SHOW JUMPING – IRISH OPEN WITH BACK-TO-BACK WINS AT DUBLIN HORSE SHOW

Cruise-On-Clover-Hickstead-2014-MDIT was a triumphant opening day yesterday for Ireland at the Discover Ireland Dublin Horse Show, with back-to-back wins in the two international classes.

Mayo’s Cameron Hanley dominated the first competition, the Speed Stakes, romping home with two fellow-countrymen on his heels, but stopping the clock with over a second in hand.

Thomas Ryan and the Irish Sport Horse Cruise on Clover placed second, with another Irish Sport Horse, Westland Ruby, claiming third with Michael Duffy on board. Tipperary’s Shane Breen was also placed equal fourth in the Speed Stakes with Ominerale Courcelle, forcing America’s celebrity entrant Jessica Springsteen and Davendy S into sixth overall.

Two members of the Irish Aga Khan squad featured in the second big class of the day, the Irish Sports Council Classic, which had two rounds with top international riders facing a formidable maximum fence height of 1m60.

While 19 year-old Wexford rider Bertram Allen finished in ninth place with the stallion Romanov, it was Offaly’s Darragh Kenny who took the trophy and its 8,000 euro prize money with the gelding Picolo, much to the delight of the home crowd. Kenny outpaced the world’s No. 3 rider, Britain’s Scott Brash, to give Ireland its second victory of the day in the main arena.

BREEDING

· Cruise On Clover (ISH) – 2000 grey gelding by Cruising (ISH) out of Ballinakill Clover (ID), by Clover Hill (ID). Bred by Dr Noel Cawley, Co. Kildare. Owner: Laura Nina Aschwanden. Rider: Thomas Ryan (IRL)

Westland Ruby (ISH) – 2004 chestnut mare by Aldato (KWPN) out of Diamond Explosion (ISH), by King Of Diamonds (ID). Owner/Bred by Dermot Forde, Co. Cavan. Rider: Michael Duffy (IRL)