Former long-time New Zealand Thoroughbred Breeders’ Association chief executive Michael Martin has been honoured at a dinner at Cambridge on Wednesday night where he was awarded a life membership to the association.
Martin had a long tenure at NZTBA, working for the association for 23 years, 21 of those as chief executive.
“It is the first time they have awarded the lifetime membership to a former employee,” Martin said. “I feel particularly honoured and I am joining a list of very eminent people in the thoroughbred breeding industry in New Zealand.”
Martin, together with his wife Susan Archer, also experienced success as breeders, having bred 13-time Group One winner Sunline.
“That was our personal breeding highlight,” Martin said. “In 1999, Susan and I were named breeders of the year. We also bred So You Think’s mother as well.”
Martin said he has taken particular enjoyment in mentoring younger generations in the industry, with the Sunline Trust scholarship being a pinnacle part of that.
“One of the most enjoyable parts of my role has been the mentoring of young people and the formation of the Sunline Trust, which is an educational trust that was formed after Sunline retired in 2002,” he said.
“It has sent a lot of young people overseas to further their careers. I have had a lot of satisfaction in watching people grow into significant industry roles as a result.”