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Girl power USA set to take Dublin Horse Show by storm

By Ruth Loney

Published 21/07/2016

Champions: Peter Smyth and Templepatrick Welcome Diamond, winners of the six-year-old class, with Horse Sport Ireland Chairman Pat Wall at the Dublin Horse Show
Champions: Peter Smyth and Templepatrick Welcome Diamond, winners of the six-year-old class, with Horse Sport Ireland Chairman Pat Wall at the Dublin Horse Show

Dublin Horse Show has attracted the cream of celebrity showjumping ladies this year including the top Great Britain rider Laura Renwick.

Laura is the only female on the GB squad this year, as opposed to the all American girl power line up of Jessica Springsteen, Laura Kraut, Lauren Hough, Georgina Bloomberg and Audrey Coulter.

The USA team with Springsteen on board won here two years ago and the daughter of ‘The Boss’ Bruce is determined they give everyone a run for their money in tomorrow’s Aga Khan Nations Cup event.

However lurking in the wings are strong teams from Ireland and Great Britain with the dark horse being the Czech Republic.

Bloomberg, daughter of the former Mayor of New York, is another tough cookie and returns to Dublin with some of her five star horses having competed in Europe on the Global Champions Tour in recent months.

Kilkenny’s Marion Hughes shines the torch for the Irish ladies, but the national classes will be dominated by up and coming ladies such as Tyrone’s Jenny Rankin who is stable jockey for the Athlone yard of Deirdre Bourns.

The breezy but sunny start to Dublin Horse Show 2016 was a memorable opening event for international rider Peter Smyth of Strabane, who won the Horse Sport Ireland six-year-old class in the unique Ballsbridge grass arena.

Smyth, brother-in-law of golf’s Ryder Cup captain Darren Clarke, partnered Antrim farmer Robin Bingham’s Templepatrick Welcome Diamond, a bay mare sired by the County Down stallion Limmerick, to stop the clock in 41.73.

Kilkenny’s Ger O’Neill, with Killossery Kaiden, was close on her heels by under a second in 42.70.

The cream of Ireland’s six-year-old horses qualified for this class with County Tyrone’s Emily Turkington claiming third place on Quantify, owned by John Fee.

Both the winner and third placed mares, together with fourth placed HHS California by Heritage Fortunus ridden by Maria Vozone, Kilkenny have qualified for the RDS Brood Mare Futurity competition.

Jason Foley won both the 148cms qualifers for ponies with More Clover and Casino Royale with Ciaran Nallon taking third on Judy Murphy’s Javas Lady Bug.

Francis Derwin junior won the 128cm pony class with Buachail Baire, beating Tom Wachman with Park Epic and Max Foley on Remington Steel.

Omagh rider Niamh McEvoy finished in an excellent fifth place with Sparkling Majestic Caesar.

Cian O’Connor with Aramis 573 took the Avery Crest Speed stakes from 79 starters with five Irish riders occupying the top placings.

The fact that three of them were tomorrow’s Aga Khan team riders indicates they mean business and will most certainly be favourites to take on the strong USA team.

The Irish line-up for the Avery Crest speed class from 79 starters saw Bertram Allen finish in the runner-up spot ahead of Greg Broderick, Billy Twomey and Darragh Kenny.

Sport Ireland Classic Table A two round class was won by Lorenzo De Luca for Italy with Limestone Grey, beating Brazil’s Marlon Modolo Zanotelli on Rock N Roll Semilly ahead of GB’s Ben Maher.

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