I AM writing this final blog as a graduate of the 2020-2022 Godolphin Flying Start class.

Our final month consisted of externship placements throughout Europe and the bittersweet finale, graduation. I completed my final placement with Jessica Harrington Racing.

Overall, we were spread between Ireland, England, and France. The separation made us all appreciate our final week together.

My placement with Jessica Harrington Racing will be remembered as one of my highlights throughout the course.

When we were last in Ireland, the Covid-19 lockdown prevented us from going to races, both with trainers and as fans. This placement allowed me to see Irish racing at its finest.

I was able to travel and lead up horses at tracks such as Fairyhouse and Listowel. I was able to attend racing at the Curragh and Punchestown as a fan. I was able to finally see Irish racing in person. The passion amongst the spectators and horsemen was evident. It showed why horseracing in Ireland is intertwined with the people.

While I am heading back to America, there are many takeaways from my time on the course.

First, my fellow trainees have become lifelong friends. We have learned so much, not only from the amazing opportunities the course provides, but also from each other.

Second, the diverse methods of management and task completion in every country is something to remember. There is so much to learn from every jurisdiction. It is worth trying to see if the various styles translate to another jurisdiction.

Third, thoroughbred racing is only as successful as its least passionate supporter. For me, I became involved because I love the breed and the horse. For others it is the thrill of the race and the skill in reading the form.

Fourth, as was discussed at the graduation ceremony, never stop practicing and learning.

Finally, everyone should have at least one mentor. There is no one better than a staunch supporter to discuss ideas and passion and to help guide you through life.

I may have said goodbye to my fellow trainees on June 24th, but I know that was simply a goodbye for now. I will see them again through our careers and lives. We persevered through the challenges of Covid-19 but came out on the other side resilient.

Thank you to His Highness Sheikh Mohammed for the scholarship and opportunities. Thank you to Godolphin across the world, you ensured we experienced the dream that is Godolphin Flying Start.

See godolphinflyingstart.com for more information on the programme