A Great Way to Gain Industry Experience
I can hardly believe that my summer Internship with HRI is drawing
to a close. Apart from having thoroughly enjoying the experience over the last
two months, it has greatly benefited me in considering a future career path.
I have always had a keen interest in the thoroughbred industry.
Growing up in a breeding and racing environment afforded me the opportunity to
visit various countries and interface with likeminded people.
My father, Stephen Collins, General Manager for HRH Sheikh
Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum has given my family the opportunity to grow up on
one of Ireland’s most prestigious and well-known stud farms, namely Derrinstown
Stud. Being surrounded by top quality bloodstock and seeing how much time and
effort is involved in the breeding and preparation of a champion class racehorse,
generated a real interest for me. My grandfather, Sean Collins, was very much
involved in the industry, apart from being a very successful Stud Farm Owner,
Stallion Master, and an Equine Veterinary Surgeon, he was one of the principle
founders of the Irish Equine Centre. All of this allowed me to become familiar with
many aspects of the industry. Both my father and grandfather’s passion for the
bloodstock and racing industry has encouraged my interest in pursuing a career
in marketing and hopefully in time I will be able to further my involvement and
commitment within this exciting industry.
Leopardstown Racecourse has afforded me the opportunity to
work with their single -minded team and I am very grateful to have been given
this position. The hustle and bustle of the Bulmers Live Series has given me
the unique experience of working within two massive industries incorporating
both music and horse racing. It is difficult to fathom the amount of time and
effort that goes on behind the scenes to make a successful race day and to
promote a hugely engaging music event running in tandem.
I am a third year
Marketing student in DIT. The four years Honours course is intensive and covers
all aspects of a business marketing environment. Using the skills from my
degree course facilitates immersing myself into a practical daily working
environment with office life. I have been primarily involved in the sales/hospitality
sectors during my tenure at Leopardstown Racecourse. This also involved
managing and selling tickets directly to clients as part of our hospitality
On Thursday evening race meetings, I shadow the marketing and
PR department to better understand the complexity of their roles within the
organisation. However, my primary role is to look after the very important corporate
hospitality sector and receive feedback from clients to make sure they were
enjoying the experience and more importantly with the intention of adopting any
further improvements for future race meetings.
We have had some incredible nights at the Bulmers Live Series
at the racetrack, hosting artists such as Coolio, Versatile and The Stunning and
we are very much looking forward to hosting All Saints on August 15 which should
be one of the biggest events of the whole series.
One of our principal tasks at the outset of my internship was
to make racing more attractive for a younger audience. Jack Linehan (also a HRI
Leopardstown intern) and I are currently working on a strategy to encourage more
young people between the ages of 18 and 30 to become future racing members at
Leopardstown. This event will take place on August 15, the final night of the
Bulmers Live Series, which will no doubt justify our efforts in applying with
what we have learned during the past few months. We have run social media
competitions and have also regularly posted on our various social media
We have received a very positive response so far which is essential
in attracting younger people as the future owners and supporters of Irish racing.
Our industry has so much to offer and it is up to all of us to encourage people
to engage positively with horse racing and to enjoy this wonderful social
experience so richly engrained in Irish culture.
A huge thank you to Pat Keogh, my supervisor Lynn McNally and
her hospitality team who have taught me so much and have given me their upmost
help and assistance in making my internship so enjoyable and beneficial.
Personally, I feel it is paramount that people should partake
in an internship or work experience as it will help progress their skills and
knowledge. Gaining real-life experience is vital and having partaken in this
year’s HRI summer internship programme, I would highly recommend that anyone
who has an interest in horse racing should consider it for next year.
Interested in joining?
Goracing Student Society
Published in The Irish Field
Student Intern Blogs
Dates for your diary
Student Race Day