Competitors from 16 nations arrive for Millstreet equestrian event

European eventing championships for Juniors and Young Riders starts on Wednesday

 One of the feature fences on this year’s  European eventing championship track at Millstreet,  Co Cork

One of the feature fences on this year’s European eventing championship track at Millstreet, Co Cork

 

The combined European eventing championships for Juniors and Young Riders starts on Wednesday in Millstreet, Co Cork, with the first horse inspection.

Competitors representing 16 nations have been arriving at the Duggan family’s Green Glens Arena since the weekend, with Ireland as host being permitted to have a dozen riders in both divisions.

Disappointingly, the home contingent, which is sponsored by Gain Horse Feeds, lost one young rider following the withdrawal of Co Down’s Adam Haugh with Master Gold Touch. However, there are some strong contenders amongst the remaining 11, chief of these being Co Galway-born Cathal Daniels.

The 20-year-old, who won many medals at previous underage championships, is due to partner Margaret Kinsella’s Imperial Hights gelding Sammy Davis Junior on which he finished best of the Irish when 14th in the two-star class for seven-year-olds at the world breeding championships for young event horses in France last October.

Alex Power is the in-form Irish rider at Junior level, and he competes on the German-bred Lakantus, a seven-year-old Hannoverian gelding with which he won the Junior class at this year’s Tattersalls international horse trials where the vast majority of the Irish squad finished behind him.

Among those coming in from abroad are Marie Fuss and Hella Meise who won individual gold and silver at last year’s Young Riders’ championships which were held in Montelibretti, Italy.

The former was on the French gold medal-winning team, but Meise was not a member of the German quartet who claimed team silver ahead of Italy. Germany are the reigning Junior champions, while France and Great Britain took silver and gold last September.

Millstreet hosted the 2014 European eventing championships for ponies, and France’s Victor Levecque, who won double gold on that occasion, returns for this year’s Young Riders championships.

Britain’s Isabelle Upton, who claimed team and individual silver that season, is among the British Junior squad for this week’s championship.

Irish Young Riders Squad – Susie Berry (Morswood), Nessa Briody (Tomboy), Daragh Byrne (Peruising), Alice Copithorne (Fort Arthur Going For Gold), Cathal Daniels (Sammy Davis Junior), Tessa Harley (Catsky), Robbie Kearns (Garrybritt Bonny), Shannon Nelson (Commanchero), Gavin Smiddy (Carraigh Rua), Casey Webb (Beltrim Full Moon) and Patrick Whelan (Footfall).

Irish Junior Squad – Correna Bowe (LCC Cooley), Luke Coen (Stroke Of Genius), Cillian Creedon (Spirit in the Sky), Anna Kelly (Something Special), Robyn McCluskey (Rum Jumbie), Alex Power (Lakantus), Izzy Riley (Ballycarron Lad), Katie Riley (Versace Biscuit), Maresa Ronan (Super Jumbo), Stephanie Stammschroer (Master Swatch), Jim Tyrrell (Rock Gift) and Sofie Walshe (Kinsau).

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