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Saturday 25 February 2017

Stud's €20m star attraction shows no signs of stopping

Louise Hogan

Louise Hogan

FOR the stud's flagship stallion, Invincible Spirit, the day kicks off at 7.15am during the breeding season.

There are around 150 mares on the book of the stallion, at a cost of €60,000 per covering.

It is estimated that the horse is conservatively valued at €20m, although it is recorded on the Irish National Stud's accountancy books at zero due to depreciation and conservative accounting.

The stud owns 40pc of the horse, whose annual earnings amount to €7m to €8m.

Mick 'the gaffer' Kelly, who has been working with the stud's stallions for the past 23 years, said all the eight stallions were treated the same.

"He'd usually have four mares to cover. The first would be 7.15am, then it's 11.30am, 4.30pm, 8.30pm or 9pm," he said, adding this was Invincible Spirit's routine for about five months of the year. The busiest time is April and May.

"Sometimes this lad might turn his nose up to a mare. We might have to bring a second mare into the shed for him. He likes a bit of a blonde now and then," Mr Kelly said.

Irish Independent

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