Shadwell Day a ‘fantastic’ experience for Admirals Academy pupils

Last Friday was Shadwell Day at Newmarket Racecourse, with the racing and breeding operation of H H Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum sponsoring the two Group 2 races on the card. It also marked the start of the second year of Shadwell’s sponsorship of 12 Racing to School activity days, with the first event involving an eager group of Year 5 and 6 pupils from Admirals Academy.

Not only did these young people get the chance to experience the full Racing to School day, they were very lucky to have the opportunity to visit Shadwell’s Nunnery Stud in Thetford. During their day they got the chance to learn all about the Thoroughbred breeding industry and meet some of the world’s leading stallions. Each of the pupils was tasked with writing a poem about their experience at the stud, with the

winning entry being awarded a prize at Newmarket on Friday.

All the entries were very good but the winner was Laurence Roberts, whose poem ‘The Muhaarar Trot’ can be read here. Laurence was presented with his own set of silks in the colours of Sheikh Hamdan by his retained jockey and former champion, Jim Crowley. The day was made even more special for the family, as, by complete coincidence, Laurence’s mother was on duty with the group as one of the school’s volunteers on the day.

Reflecting on what she thought of the day, Admirals Academy Principal Sandra Dunkley said: “Fantastic! Yes, absolutely wonderful. We came last year and I was told it was a brilliant day and it was. They children have been so excited, they’ve had such fun and they have also learnt such a lot.

“We wanted to find a way to support Racing to School and have decided on doing an enterprise project back at school to raise funds for the charity.”

Later in the afternoon, Racing to School was presented with a cheque for £18,000 from Shadwell to support the programme, which will engage around 450 pupils. The charity is so grateful to Shadwell Stud and H H Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum for their generous and ongoing support.