Ulster duo Swail and Coyle to the fore as Irish celebrate double joy
Saintfield's Conor Swail and Daniel Coyle of Derry were celebrating over the weekend as Ireland won Nations Cup events in Lisbon and Langley British Columbia.
Belfast company Devenish Nutrition, the co-sponsors of the Irish international equestrian teams, were delighted as Swail and Coyle - along with captain Brian Cournane and Richie Moloney - scooped the Nations Cup in Langley, adding to the squad's European success in Portugal on Saturday.
The Irish finished on a two-round total of 12 faults in Langley, with hosts Canada second on 18 faults and Mexico third on 25, with the USA in fourth.
Langley hosted the last of three qualifying rounds in the North and Central America Longines FEI Nations Cup Series, and the result means that Canada and USA have claimed the two qualifying places on offer for the 2018 Nations Cup World Final in Barcelona.
There were showjumping successes earlier in Langley when Coyle won the £235,000 Longines Grand Prix, and Swail also scored a win in the $35,000 class.
Back in Europe, the Irish Under-14 Children on Horses team finished as joint runners-up in another FEI Nations Cup event at Wierden, where Portadown rider Lucy Morton competed with Delton.
The team - made up of Limerick's Sarah Fitzgerald (Master Holiday (ISH)(TIH), Kilkenny's Isobel Hughes Kennedy (ESI Carvalho (ISH), Armagh's Morton (Delton) and Clare's Rhys Williams (CES Cruson (ISH) - finished on a two-round total of 12 faults, level with Spain and the Netherlands. Belgium took the winners' prize on nine faults.
Crossmaglen Olympian James Kernan was trainer of both the Under-18 and Under-14 Irish squads which took runners up in Wierden.