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Wednesday, 12 December, 2018

Ferguson: the time was right to leave Godolphin

John Ferguson (right) and son James during inspections at the Goffs Orby Sale last month
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John Ferguson on Sunday declared “it was the right time” for him to leave Godolphin in June after 25 years of working for Sheikh Mohammed.

Ferguson announced in the summer he would depart Godolphin, admitting his position had become "untenable", one day after the Racing Post revealed the damaging extent of Saeed Bin Suroor's feud with Sheikh Mohammed's closest aide.

Ferguson has since returned to the bloodstock industry in partnership with Sam Haggas, son of trainer William.

Ferguson said on Racing UK's Luck on Sunday: “The time was right to leave Godolphin. It’s a fabulous organisation run by a fabulous man, who I’m so grateful to, but you’re focusing on racing and breeding in England, Ireland, France, United States, Australia and Japan and you’re constantly on the move and managing processes.

“When I started with Sheikh Mohammed there were four people in the stud office and when I finished there were 1,800 people.

“You’re always managing people and, although it was great fun and a huge honour to have the job, there’s always a time for everybody to step down.

“You know in your bones when the time is right to move on – I have no regrets in how my time with Godolphin ended.”

Saeed Bin Suroor: made stinging comments about Godolphin and the way it has been run

In an interview with the Racing Post in the lead-up to the Derby, Bin Suroor revealed he no longer reported to Ferguson, while describing his latest intake of juveniles as a “disaster”.

Ferguson, however, stated he had no issues with Bin Suroor’s comments.

He said: “When you’re training beautifully bred horses, you have huge pressures to perform. Sheikh Mohammed doesn’t put pressure on trainers himself but trainers are so desperate to do well for him so you put pressure on yourself.

“I don’t criticise Saeed for his comments at all – he had absolutely the right to say what he said and felt it was the appropriate thing to say, and I don’t have any problem with that.”

If you are interested in this, you might like . . .

Ferguson steps down as chief executive at Godolphin

Former Godolphin chief Ferguson returns to action at Goffs

Godolphin mainstay sets his sights on another Derby


You know in your bones when the time is right to move on - I have no regrets in how my time with Godolphin ended
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