Belfast Telegraph

Sports Awards

Emotional Mexico edge out Ireland

 

By Ruth Loney

An emotional Mexico team were crowned Nations Cup champions of the Stena Line 2018 Dublin Horse Show.

Ireland finished in a tie for second place after a thrilling jump-off, in which the Mexicans triumphed, booking a place at the world championships in Tryon, North Carolina next month.

It was particularly emotional for Mexico team member Federico Fernandez, who survived the 1988 Mexican air crash where over 50 people died.

"This brings tears to your eyes," Fernandez said.

"We have had the best Nations Cup ever, we haven't stopped dreaming about this moment."

Mexico finished on a score of eight faults to win, with Ireland, Italy and France all finishing on 12 faults and sharing second place, while GB were sixth.

It was a thrilling finish as, with the last line of riders left to jump, Ireland, France, Mexico and Italy were tied.

Ireland's Cameron Hanley was last to jump and, had he gone clear, Ireland would have gone to a jump-off, but a fault at the combination handed Mexico victory.

Rodrigo Pessoa, Ireland's chef d'equipe, said: "We came close and, one thing is for sure, we will be back next year to try again."

Meanwhile, Stewartstown's Gareth Swail won the highly coveted 3,000 gelding loose jumping final on Brian Hutchinson's SVS Valiant.

Hutchinson was the overall champion and will now produce the horse under saddle.

Randalstown's Samuel McAteer produced the heavy cob winner with Randalstown Cromwell, and was runner-up with Randalstown Raffles in the lightweights.

Vice President of the Balmoral Show Diane Gibson took to the saddle for the heavy hunters section and finished runner-up.

Randalstown chemist Sam Smyth kept Co Antrim in contention, taking second in coloured horses with Ballylurgan Ferro, who went on to win reserve championship of his section, and Alice Power, on Bear Me In Mind, won the 138cms National Pony Showjumping Championship.

Max Foley's Pumpkins Pondi, a 15-year-old 148cm pony stallion owned by Ger Foley, received the RDS Championship trophy after a six-pony jump-off from 14 finalists, while Ryan Sweetnam on Kilcummin Cruise, owned by Patrick Finn, won the six and seven year old 148cms ponies in 35.92.

GB's Amanda Derbyshire claimed yesterday's seven and eight year old international on the Holstein bred bay mare Celina BH, while Derry's Daniel Coyle was in the money for third with Legacy, a bay mare by Chippendale owned by Ariel Grange of Ontario.

He will now contest tomorrow's Grand Prix on his multiple winning five star horse Cita.

Today sees the Royal Dublin Society Stakes start at noon, followed by the International Stakes at 1.50pm.

International riders and pony pairs relay kicks off at 4.30pm, while the Racehorse to Riding horse follows at 5.35pm.

The Land Rover Puissance is at 6.10pm when spectators will throng for the high jump big wall event. The amateur national championship concludes the day.

Young Riders 1.35m

1 Nicholas Connors, Abordable du Talus 0-0 38.98; 2 Stephen Murphy, Chantelle 0-4 39.38; 3 Anna Carway, Claricella 0-8 38.38

Young Riders 1.25m

1 Nano Healy, Sligo Land du Rouet 0-0 36.17; 2 Cian Harrison, Mr Big Cash 0-0 37.13; 3 Mark Finnerty, All Action 0-0 37.75

Six Year old Horses

1 Mickey Pender, Javas Gucci 0-0 37.27; 2 Sophie Richards, Moonahaw 0-0 37.58; 3 Damien Griffin, Celtic Hero 0-0 39.26

138cms National Championship

1 Alice Power, Bear me in Mind 0-0 37.02; 2 Alex Finney, Dolly du Carel 0-0 38.78; 3 Sarah Fitzgerald, Future Memories 0-0 40.28

148cms National Championship

1 Max Foley, Pumkins Pondi 0-0 40.82; 2 Ellen Thompson, Sligo Little James 0-0 48.75; 3 Seamus Hughes Kennedy, Rock Dee Jay 0-4 38.81

Showjumping Loose Jumping

1 Brian Hutchinson, SVS Valient, Moneymore

Four Year Old Horses

1 Damien Griffin, Ganesh Hero Z 0- 88.50; 2 Ita McDermott, Katorevel 0- 86; 3 Shane Goggins, JDP Dougland 0-81.50; 4 Catherine Thornton, Darco Q 0-81.50

Six and Seven Year Old Ponies

1 Ryan Sweetnam, Kilcumman Cruise 0-0 35.92; 2 Robyn Moran, Colesgrove Cavalier 0-0 37.06; 3 Katelynn Kilkenny, Castlehill Titan 0-0 40.62

Longines FEI Nations Cup

1 Mexico; 2 France; 2 Italy; 2 Ireland

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