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Young gun kicks off auctioneering career

Next Generation Chairman
Young gun kicks off auctioneering career

THERE was a fresh face on the Goffs UK rostrum during the August Sale which took place at the Doncaster sales complex on Wednesday, with Sean Flannery making the leap from bloodstock manager to auctioneer.

Flannery grew up at the familyrun Esker Lodge Stud, who sold a Dawn Approach colt to John Ferguson for €300,000 at last year's Goffs November Foals Sale, before going on to study equine science at the University of Limerick.

The degree course saw him spend time working at the likes of Ballyhane Stud in County Carlow and Coolmore Australia before he took up a full-time position as a bloodstock executive with Goffs in 2012.

Flannery says he hadn't dreamed of taking up the mic when he joined Goffs, but having spent plenty of time on the rostrum as a bid spotter he gradually warmed to the idea of taking centre stage himself.

"I knew I'd be kicking myself if I didn't give it a go," says Flannery. "I expressed an interest in auctioneering back in January so I've been rehearsing since then.

"I started practising with my coach Andrew Nolan in the canteen here at Goffs, starting off slowly and gradually building up. I'm not a fan of listening to my own voice but there's been a lot of videoing myself to help me to trying keep on improving."

Those present at Doncaster on Wednesday will have witnessed the fruits of Flannery's labour, as the 27-year-old slipped smoothly into the Goffs auctioneering rota alongside established names such as Henry Beeby and Nick Nugent.

"When I put the mic on I felt like I had sand in my mouth! But, despite the nerves, I thoroughly enjoyed my first stint," reflected Flannery.

With auctioneering not the kind of work which lends itself to idols Flannery said he was aiming to take inspiration from a range of sources to help him develop his own style.

"When it comes to auctioneering Nick and Henry are in a different league, although I have a lot of respect for a few of the Tattersalls guys," said Flannery. "I also owe an awful lot to Andrew Nolan, he's been a massive help to me."

Flannery is aiming to take up auctioneering duties in Ireland in due course and will next take to the rostrum at the Goffs UK September Sale, although he is unlikely to be left twiddling his thumbs in the interim.

Esker Lodge will soon begin preparation for the November Foal Sale draft, which includes a Dark Angel filly out of Elshamms - whose ten runners have all won - as well as lots by sires such as Cape Cross and Charm Spirit.

And with Flannery also recently having taken over as the chairman of the ITBA's Next Generation association he certainly seems to have his hands full with more than just the auctioneer's gavel.

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