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Flying Start students graduate with flying colors

Darley Flying Start students Michael Dilger, Edward Sackville and Francis Graffard recently graduated from Darley's inaugural Flying Start program after spending part of their multinational tour in California under the tutelage of Eoin Harty. The two-year equine management-training program prepares students for careers in racing and breeding.

Conceived by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum, the program is free and living expenses are covered for the twelve candidates selected. The students rotate apprenticeships in the US, Dubai, England, Ireland and Australia. They attend a variety of conferences and seminars, and gain six weeks of hands-on work experience in each area of course study. During the spring of 2004, Dilger, Sackville and Graffard served apprenticeships at Santa Anita with Harty. The three exercised horses and assisted training and racing. Before graduation, the students were required to deliver presentations and written research reports on topics related to aspects of racing and breeding, as well as evaluations of the program itself.

The results of the first completed course and reports by students can be found on Darley's website at The course is open to "anyone of any age from anywhere." Profiles on all selected candidates and information on how to apply to the course are featured at the site.


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