• Jack Fogarty - HRI Finance Intern

    As I enter my eight week of my internship with Horse Racing Ireland, I am delighted to have an opportunity to combine my studies with my love of the equine industry.


    My profound passion for the equine industry originates back to my childhood. There is photographic evidence in my home illustrating that my passion started at a very young age, attending pony classes at the local agricultural shows. As I got older, I progressed onto show jumping and then started hunting through the Golden Vale with the Tipperary Foxhounds. Regular visits to Tipperary, Clonmel and Thurles racetracks, all quite near me, along with the wonderful conversations and stories that I listened to as I grew up about the breeding of different horses that won races sowed the seeds for my passionate interest in the bloodstock industry today.


    This passion has driven me to seek out various employment roles within the equine industry. I have previously worked as a bid spotter with Goffs Bloodstock Sales. It gave me an opportunity to see the wonderful progeny of some of the amazing stallions and pedigrees in this country. It was a fantastic place to be when bidding would commence on a much sought after animal, the atmosphere would be electrifying. Last summer and at weekends during the college year, I worked at Ballydoyle Racing. This gave me a great insight into the world of horse training and I also got an opportunity to visit different racetracks here in Ireland and overseas.


    I am going into my third year of the Bsc Accounting degree at UCC in September. I applied for the HRI internship as I saw it as a dream opportunity to combine my interest in the racing industry with the skills I’ve learned in college. I was delighted when I was given the opportunity to join the finance department through the internship programme. The finance department is an extremely busy division as it supports the activities of the Horse Racing Ireland Group as well as its subsidiaries Irish Thoroughbred Marketing, HRI-owned racecourses and Tote Ireland. At first, I was taken back by the hive of activity that takes place in this department but, through the support and assistance provided to me by Michelle Lawlor and her team, I’m gaining a wealth of knowledge in relation to the business and financial sector of the industry. The team have been so helpful and very generous with their time and knowledge.


    A vast amount of activities need to be completed for the HRI Group and its subsidiaries and this ensures that no two days are the same. My responsibilities as part of the finance department include doing up the month end management accounts for different departments, administration work in relation to the foal levy, working on the half year stats for HRI racecourses, assisting in putting together the forecasts for certain departments, analysing the spend per country versus the sales per country for Irish Thoroughbred Marketing and looking into the bloodstock sales results for Irish Thoroughbred Marketing purposes.


    I am thoroughly enjoying my time with Horse Racing Ireland and am extremely grateful to HRI for giving me this incredible opportunity. I look forward to gaining further knowledge about the wonderful horse racing industry and how it diverts into so many fields, creating huge employment and attracting foreign investment into this country. I am beginning to understand when professional sports people speak about how fortunate they are to work in a sport that they are passionate about and I know this internship will energise me even more with my studies in accountancy when I return to college. 

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