Several previous FLS workshops had been attended by Geoff Derham, brother-in-law of Paul Nicholls, and a friend of his, Simon Panes,who was previously in charge of sport at Filton College. They had said how horse-racing was seen to be very different to other sports, yet the issues remained the same. They suggested to me that Paul might be interested in being involved in a workshop Paul had been champion trainer 10 times in the past, but not in the two previous years, so he was beginning to harbour doubts and concerns. Thus it was that FLS, in conjunction with the British Horse-Racing Authority, held a small workshop on May 9th, around the subject of ‘Winning’.
The day started with a guided tour of Paul’s stables at Ditcheat in Somerset, and then the workshop itself took place in the village hall.
What a wonderful day it turned out to be. A highlight was a conversation between Paul Nicholls and England rugby coach, Eddie Jones, steered beautifully by Richard Hytner. ‘Team Ditcheat’ staff were then involved in a panel discussion, which demonstrated the value in horse-racing as in other sports of a strong culture and healthy core values. Members of a second panel then shared their own ideas and experiences from sport, business and the military. The workshop ended with a customary sharp and relevant summing up by Frank Dick.
The day ended with many of the delegates attending Wincanton races as guests of Paul in his box.
As always, all the workshop content is here on the FLS website in the members secure area. It is well worth spending some time looking at it