Vale Phillip Esplin

The Australian flag is fluttering at half-mast at Arrowfield Stud as a mark of respect following the death on Friday of one of its founding directors, D. P. R. (Phillip) Esplin.

Mr Esplin was a director of the Arrowfield Group from its inception in 1985 until 1997, and was closely involved in the development of the Stud during that period.

The principal of Esplins, and a well-respected commercial lawyer, Mr Esplin had a passion for the thoroughbred industry and in recent years served on the board of the Australian Jockey Club, and as a Director and Acting Chairman of Racing NSW.

Over the years Mr Esplin earned a reputation as a shrewd and distinguished breeder, operating under the Twin Palms Stud banner. On his own account and in partnership with the Johnson family, he was responsible for many stakeswinners, among them Reset, Charge Forward, Merlene, Miss Pennymoney, Timbourina, Well Rounded, Fast ‘n’ Famous and Duelled. Current Esplin-bred performers include Group 2 winner Varenna Miss and Group 2-placed Platinum Passion.

“Phillip was a fierce competitor in every sphere. He had the capacity to think outside the square and was always clear and direct in his assessments. This made him a great advocate to have on your side, and a formidable opponent,” said Arrowfield chairman, John Messara.

“In the thirty years that I knew Phillip, he constantly tested my ideas and opinions, and I will miss our often lengthy debates on racing topics. Most of all, I will miss his friendship and counsel. May he rest in peace.”

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