Native Irish breeds take centre stage on showing scene
Clare Lambert’s Gold Dancer named champion by judges
Seamus McGillion with his daughter Emma (3) from Omagh, Co Tyrone, at the opening day of the Discover Ireland Dublin Horse Show at the RDS, Ballsbridge, Dublin. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill
Native Irish breeds, the Draught and Connemara, took centre stage on the showing scene at the RDS yesterday with large crowds around Ring 2 for the performance classes.
The Irish Draughts were first to take on the challenge set by course builder Dereck Hamilton and the champion, selected by British judges Jon Trice-Rolph and Chris Hunnable, came from the older class where the line-up was topped by Clare Lambert and her own Gold Dancer.
A very distinctive liver chestnut with one loppy ear, the 10-year-old has plenty of experience behind him and most recently won a Junior C one-day event under the owner’s daughter Correna Bowe. Until the autumn, when he was gelded, Gold Dancer stood as a stallion in Co Wexford with his breeder, Jack Lambert.
The reserve champion was the four- and five-year-old class winner, Loughnatousa Angelo, a five-year-old gelding ridden for Co Waterford owner Tim Beecher by his son Paul, who whipped hounds off the grey son of Crannagh Hero over the winter.
Popular with spectators
The two Connemara performance classes continue to prove popular with spectators who saw the six-year-old Josie Jump repeat his win in the five- to seven-year-old section.
He was again partnered by Jason Higgins who sold the grey stallion by Currachmore Cashel to his present owner, JJ Bowe, after his victory here last year. Josie Jump will compete later in the week in the pony show jumping classes.
Lydia Dawson came within two points of landing the older Connemara class with the 2011 winner Gloster Boy but had to give best to Rebecca Dunlea riding Comical Con. The 10-year-old grey gelding by Crusheen Comet was in action at the Irish Pony Club Festival last week, finishing third in the team dressage competition.
He was represented by the 11-year-old grey Glencarrig Prince mare Glencarrig Princess and her April filly foal Glencarrig Countess, a grey by Glencarrig Knight.
The Corbett family from Ballynahinch had a successful day on the level with Shannon landing the riding horse championship on her six-year-old gelding Massereene Dorian Gray, another by Crusheen Comet, while sister Eirin later claimed the honours in the small hunter championship on her grey Coille Mor Hill gelding Carnsdale Corbiere.