Well no more snow! The weather has been lovely since the 1st of March! We have 50 foals on the ground and the "boys on the hill" are busy, busy, busy! There aer 7 stallions standing at the INS this year. The hugely popular Invincible Spirit, the tough guy Rakti, Verglas the beautiful grey, Indian Haven who is by the late INS patriach Indian Ridge, Amadeus Wolf and Jeremy who have their first crop of foals on the ground this year, and new kid on the block Art Conoissuer.
There are quite a few very well connected students this year, and listening to their stories is sometimes like what you would see in a movie! Although we are a small group, everyone gets along really well. The stud is absolutely beautiful and the tourism side of the farm is very interesting. I really like all the tourists coming around, and the thrill they get out out of being able to touch a mare or foal or get their picture taken with one. There are several tours that run daily, and on weekends the stud is crawling with visitors! Trying to get all the work done when there are 50 people hanging around the gateways or inside the stables is very challenging, but meeting people from all over the world makes up for it! The weather hasn't been as bad as I had expected, and since the 1st of March it has only rained once! The lectures have been coming thick and fast, and I'm very grateful for having studied previously at the NCEE as I really feel it has given me a huge head start.
I was lucky enough that my first weekend off in a month fell on the Curragh's first race meet of the year! The Curragh is Irelands premier racetrack, and is only a 5 minute drive from the INS. Aiden O'Brien (Coolmore's top trainer) had a team of 25 horses do trackwork after the last race, showcasing St Nicholas Abbey, Fame and Glory and Rip Van Winkle. Can't wait til we start our field trips; especially to Kildangan (Darley), Coolmore and Gilltown to see "Sea The Stars"!
Hope all is well back in Oz!