Belfast Telegraph

Showjumper Abby through as top qualifier

By Ruth Loney

Armagh teenager Abby Morton won the 148cms pony showjumping qualifier on the second day of the Discover Ireland Dublin Horse Show.

The already selected Children on Horses European team rider will also ride her horse in Dublin. Abby, a member of the Iveagh Pony Club, is trained by her father Ronnie and mother Joanne. She partnered Tynan Bo Bo Bear to win a four-pony jump-off.

Donemana owners Aldyth Roulston and William Gamble finished fifth in the same class with the brilliant Ballygawleys Little Ferro, ridden by Olivia Roulston.

Ballymena's Beth Doherty and her pony X Scream won the 138cms pony class in a six-pony jump-off. A double clear round in the fastest jump-off time of 42.44 secured the red riband for Beth ahead of Wednesday's winner Kate Derwin.

Lesley Ann Duke of Langtry Lodge Moira won the Riding Horse championship with Brookfields Showdown, while the Performance Irish Draught winner was Greyabbey's Jackie Marsh with Dowdstown Dancer.

Other Performance Irish Draught placings went to Gareth McClean from Donaghadee, with Shanbally Lucky Dip and Roy Butler from Ards, with Millhollow Real McCoy.

Douglas Sporthorses from Aughnacloy were also in the money when they took second in the Three year old Potential Young Event Horse, with Rock Ambassador securing a hefty prize cheque for €3,000. They were also reserve champions for the Perpetual Challenge Trophy for young event horses.

Desmond Gibson, Dromara with Kilcarna Boy received €1,500 for fourth place in the same championship which saw the best 30 three-year-olds compete from six qualifiers across Ireland.

Dromore rider Charlotte Houston, daughter of Peter and Joanne Houston, qualified for the weekend's pony 128 championship with Kilcreene Apollo.

Darragh Kenny, won the opening speed class in the Connolly's Red Mills seven and eight year old horse qualifier with Quidam Chin Chin.

Having won with Picolo at Aachen, Chantilly and at Simmonscourt yesterday, the consistent rider said: "It's great to come back to this show having been away so long.

"This Connollys Red Mills has turned into a great class which allows international riders to bring horses, and the lads at home test their seven and eight year olds against them."

Judith Hamilton, the Co Antrim rider whose husband Andy starred in a BBC NI documentary on his cancer treatment, had an emotional win in the lightweight hunter class on Thursday.

She suffered an arm injury recently and her husband sadly passed away a few months ago, but she rode to a much celebrated victory and received amazing applause.

Today sees the final of the pony jumping championships and young riders events wlll be staged at Simmonscourt.

Irish team manager Robert Splaine has named the four-man squad who will compete in the Aga Khan Trophy competition at the Discover Ireland Dublin Horse Show this afternoon.

It includes Banbridge showjumper Dermott Lennon on board the Randalstown mare Loughview Lou Lou, which is owned by Judith Sossick and has had major successes in Europe and North America.

Meanwhile international course designer Alan Wade is concerned about the forecast for today as he may have to make changes to his planned track for the Aga Khan trophy.

He explained: "I have been watching the RTE weather and there are threats of flooding in the area, so if this affects conditions, I have to be ready for the change."

Wade, who has built the main arena tracks for five years at the RDS added: "The ground here is first class and can take rain, but nevertheless if the conditions change, I will have to be flexible."

Results: The Talbot Hotel Speed Derby: 1 Michael Duffy IRE Westland Ruby 0- 82.63, 2 Cameron Hanley IRE Newton du Haut Bois 0-84.97, 3 Capt Michael Kelly IRE Mo Chroi 0- 85.47.

Connollys Red Mills seven and eight-year-old International: 1 Darragh Kenny IRE Chin Quidam VDL 0- 59.51, 2 Greg Broderick IRE Javas Keltic Mist 0- 60.25, 3 Alexander Butler IRE Hallowberry Cruz 0- 61.43.

Five -year olds: 1 Ger O'Neill, Ard Ginger Pop 0-0- 38.06, 2 Clement McMahon, Hilton Pacifico 0-0 38.66, 3 Gemma Phelan, Mr O'Brien Two You 0-0 39.87.

Serpentine Stakes International: 1 Kent Farrington, USA Blue Angel 0- 64.93, 2 Conor Swail IRE Lansdowne 0- 66.35, 3 Bertram Allen IRE Romanov 0- 67.10

Belfast Telegraph

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