Irish riders fill top three places in Kilguilkey House
Offaly’s Darragh Kenny just failed to land the Rolex Grand Prix at Knokke in Belgium
Ireland’s rider Sarah Ennis topped the leaderboard on Sunday. Photograph: Getty Images
Irish riders filled the top three places in the featured Global Sport Horses CIC3* class as the Fernhill Sport Horses international horse trials concluded with the cross-country phase at Kilguilkey House near Mallow on Sunday.
Co Meath’s Sarah Ennis, who topped the leaderboard, was the only rider to complete on her dressage score (28.2 penalties). On the final day, she came home clear within the time on the 14-year-old VDL Richocet gelding Horseware Stellor Rebound on which she finished best of the Irish when seventh in last year’s European eventing championships at Strzegom, Poland.
Kildare-based Cathal Daniels enjoyed an excellent weekend as he recorded double clears on all six horses he competed at the event and all finished inside the top six. In the feature class, he placed second on Margaret Kinsella’s nine-year-old Imperial Hights (CORRECT) gelding Sammy Davis Junior (31) with Co Down’s Joseph Murphy finishing third on the 17-year-old Ricardo Z gelding Sportsfield Othello (33).
Daniels also had to settle for the runner-up spot in the Top Spec CIC2* where he completed on his dressage score (31.8) with Michelle Nelson’s home-bred Samgemjee gelding OLS King Aragon (31.8). Here the honours went to a regular visitor to Ireland, Australia’s Kevin McNab (CORRECT) whose total of 28.3 included one show jumping time penalty. He rode the Irish Sport Horse gelding Willunga, an 11-year-old by Olympic Lux.
Luke Coen, who is studying Equine Business at Maynooth University, had his first start in a senior international in this 39-runner class where he finished third with the eight-year-old Jacks Delight gelding Stroke Of Genius (31.9).
Title sponsor through her Kilkenny-based operation Fernhill Sport Horses, Carol Gee had the pleasure of seeing her Fernhill Sky High record an all-the-way success in the Plusvital CIC1* class under Fraser Duffy. Gee owns the six-year-old Afellay Z mare in partnership with Tim and Clare Corballis. The Eventing Ireland CIC1* for ponies went to Co Kildare’s Ava Banahan riding Regent des Mauvis while Co Waterford’s Sharon Power won the Equissentials & Avalon CI Intro class on SRS Mini Vendi.
In show jumping, Offaly’s Darragh Kenny just failed to land the Rolex Grand Prix at Knokke in Belgium on Sunday.
One of 14 riders through to the second round where he was fourth to jump, Kenny set a very good time of 39.06 on Balou du Reventon. Britain’s William Whitaker tried hard to beat this when home in 39.84 with Utamaro D Ecaussinnes but the one who did was home favourite Niels Bruynseels who stopped the clock on 38.74 with the mare Gancia de Muze.
Kenny’s mount Balou de Reventon, on which he finished second in Friday’s 1.50m jump-off class, is a 12-year-old stallion by Cornet Obolensky. The bay is owned by Ann Thompson.
Britain-based Barry Capstick was another Irish international to fill a runner-up slot over the weekend, his second-place finish coming in the FEI two-star horse pairs’ competition held in conjunction with the British national driving trials at Sandringham. Capstick completed the three phases on penalty score of 150.84 with the honours going to Britain’s Tara Wilkinson (143.82).
The Irish driver won Saturday’s exciting marathon phase but was only fifth of the nine starters in Sunday’s concluding cones phase.