Rachel Doran and Ciara Russell

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The board of the Gerry Dilger Equine Scholarship Foundation is pleased to announce two further scholarships for 2021 to Irish students currently studying Animal Science Equine at University College Dublin. Rachel Doran and Ciara Russell have been awarded a placement at Springhouse Farm in Lexington, Kentucky. Both award recipients impressed the board with their enthusiasm, positivity, and willingness to learn, all qualities Gerry Dilger appreciated and encouraged throughout his distinguished career at the helm of the renowned Dromoland Farm. The scholarship foundation was started in honor of Gerry to aid, promote, and nurture the younger generation in the bloodstock business. “I am extremely grateful to all the donors that have generously contributed to establish this foundation.” Said Erin Dilger. “It celebrates Gerry’s memory and beliefs in such a positive way by helping young people progress and learn in the bloodstock business.”

Dublin native Rachael grew up around horses, has bought, developed, and sold young equine talent and works in a racing yard while studying for her equine degree. “I am honored to have been chosen alongside Ciara for this scholarship and it is a once in a lifetime opportunity to get something like this. I hope to pursue a career in bloodstock and breeding and Springhouse Farm will definitely provide me with experience in that area and it will be amazing to learn from industry experts” remarked Rachel.

Ciara also hails from Dublin and at an early age developed a strong interest in horses while participating in pony club. In more recent years she has worked in a mixed flat and national hunt farm in Monaghan and particularly enjoys foaling mares. Ciara commented “I feel so privileged to have been chosen for the Gerry Dilger Equine Scholarship Award. I am excited and look forward to gaining invaluable experience at Springhouse Farm in Kentucky”.

Owned and operated by Gabriel and Aisling Duignan, Springhouse Farm specializes in all aspects of the bloodstock business including sales preparation, pinhooking, and boarding. Gabriel is on the board of the foundation and said, “I am delighted to welcome Rachel and Ciara to Kentucky and give them the opportunity to further their experience and knowledge while based at Springhouse Farm.”

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