LEO Powell, honoured this year at the Irish Thoroughbred Breeders’ Association annual awards for his lifetime contribution to the industry, has been appointed the new Independent Chairman of the Bloodstock Industry Forum (‘BIF’) with immediate effect.

BIF was formed in 2019 in response to the British Horseracing Authority Review of the Buying and Selling of Bloodstock and Racehorses, and subsequently published the Bloodstock Industry Code of Practice which covers the conduct of all participants when trading bloodstock in the UK and Ireland, both at public auction and privately.

Powell has a long record of service to the industry, firstly with Ballsbridge Sales (now Tattersalls Ireland), then at Goffs, and latterly as Editor of The Irish Field for 20 years.

Commenting on his appointment, Powell said: “I am delighted and honoured to be appointed as the Independent Chair of BIF. This is an area in which I have always taken a keen interest, and recognise its importance in giving confidence to all participants in the industry.”

Since the formation of BIF, the chairmanship has been held by Jimmy George of Tattersalls who oversaw the publication of the Code, followed by Goffs’ Henry Beeby.

The latter said: “An independent Chair was one of a number of key aspirations for BIF once we had published the Code of Practice in August 2021, and Leo is ideally qualified for this position as he is truly independent of all other BIF members.

“He has an undeniably thorough knowledge and understanding of the bloodstock industry, having worked for both major auction houses and then commented upon and analysed the selling of horses as well as a wide range of bloodstock and racing issues in his role at The Irish Field.

“BIF is lucky to have secured his services, whilst the Committee would like to acknowledge the work of Jimmy who coordinated the introduction of the Code.”