Major breeding figure Sean Collins dies
SEAN COLLINS, founder and president of the Irish Equine Centre and a former chairman and president of the Irish Thoroughbred Breeders ’ Association, died last Saturday.
He was 84.
Described as a man “who reached the top of his profession” by friend and colleague Stan Cosgrove, of Moyglare Stud, leading veterinary surgeon Collins set up Corbally Stud in 1968 and stood many successful stallions, including Pennine Walk, Persian Bold, Northfields, Jukebox and Priolo.
In 1999 he downsized his operation and sold Corbally and he had been living in Foxrock in south Dublin.
He died in the city’s Beacon Clinic from a brain haemorrhage. “I knew Sean for 60 years and he was a very good vet and a very hard worker who drove all over the country,” said Cosgrove.
“He initiated a lot of systems in the fertility field and started the Equine Centre and was a man who reached the top of his profession.”
Des Leadon, head of Clinical Pathology at the Equine Centre, said: “Sean was a remarkable man with tremendous foresight
who will be sadly missed.
“The ultimate endorsement of his setting up of the centre is that it is now firmly established as a key part of the integral structure of the horse industry in Ireland.
“He did that by convincing the key figures in the industry of the need for it at the time and then took it upon his own
shoulders to turn it into reality through tremendous hard work. It was a labour of love for Sean.”
Collins ’ most notable achievement as a breeder came through Kooyonga, a Persian Bold half-sister to Listed winner Hatton Gardens out of Anjuli, an unraced daughter of Northfields. Trained by Michael Kauntze, the tough filly won nine races, including four Group 1s, led by the Coronation Stakes at Royal Ascot, in which she reversed 1,000 Guineas form with Shadayid, the Irish 1,000 Guineas and Eclipse Stakes.
An Emeritus Member of the Turf Club since 1989, Collins is survived by his wife Hanne, daughter Julie and sons Paul, Gary and Stephen, who is manager of Derrinstown Stud.