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Our Brendan hits the gold standard with Dublin victory

 

By Ruth Loney

Fintona's Brendan McSorley lifted the loose jumping trophy in the young horse section of the Dublin Horse Show yesterday. McSorley, who was awarded the prize by Olympic gold medallist Nick Skelton, who also judged the competition, impressed on a stallion by Aganix du Seigneur to win €3,000 and the RDS trophy.

Ireland's winning run continued yesterday with Greg Broderick and Zuidam scoring their second win in 24 hours.

Broderick and the 13-year-old stallion came out on top in the opening class on Wednesday and added another victory in the Speed Derby.

Broderick went clear in a time of 80.60, beating Billy Twomey on the multiple-winning Irish stallion Ardcolum Duke, who went clear in 82.64.

Hickstead-based Shane Breen and Sheikha Maitha Al Maktoum's Dubai-owned Can Ya Makan just pipped Banbridge rider Dermott Lennon to third with a time of 83.81.

Strabane's Peter Smyth, on Derrycastle Sensation, came second in the five-year-old qualifier, which was Darragh Ryan on BP First Editions.

Ryan was the fastest of the 18 clear rounds. His time of 39.90 could not be bettered by Smyth, who left the fences standing for second place in 40.78.

Dromore entrant Lynsey Wylie took first in the lightweight hunter class with Front Line, owned by her father Trevor.

The two-year-old Championship RDS trophy went to the County Down-owned Superior Choice for Pat Martin (Crossgar) and Dorothy Walsh (Belfast).

Yesterday ended on a great note for Randalstown's Rachel Smyth, who won the Side Saddle Championship with Vantage Point having qualified at the Armagh Agricultural Show.

Smyth collected two prestigious silver trophies and nearly €600 having given the judges a perfect display for top marks.

Meanwhile, the talented Mark McAuley from Ardee makes his debut on the Nation's Cup team with Cian O'Connor, Bertram Allen and Denis Lynch today.

The well known former pony champion, who has moved to Switzerland having spent the past 10 years in Italy, is delighted with his selection.

"This is my first time on the Aga Khan team. I am very happy. I've had a great year, so the ultimate reward is being chosen for the team. I have been here every year since I was 11 and my dad is delighted," he said.

It will be an emotional day for McAuley, who lost his mother to cancer some years ago. His father and uncle will cheer him on.

He added: "It is every young rider's aspiration to jump on the Nations Cup team. The other three riders are very supportive and I am very lucky to compete with them. We are all very focused, it is a different kind of pressure. We have a great team spirit."

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