Irish show jumping stallion Cruising cloned

Famous grey died last year but was cloned twice by Mary McCann of Hartwell Stud

Trevor Coyle on Cruising at the Dublin Horse Show in 1997. Photograph: Lorraine O ‘Sullivan / Inpho

Cruising, the world famous Irish show jumping stallion which died last year, was successfully cloned by his owner Mary McCann, it was revealed on Friday.

Speaking on Radio 1’s Drivetime programme, The Irish Field’s Caitriona Murphy revealed that DNA extracted from the horse in 2011 was inserted into empty eggs with the resultant embryos implanted into surrogate mares.

Two colt foals were born in 2012 but the McCann family, who are based at Hartwell Stud outside Kill, Co Kildare, kept their birth very much a secret until recently. The greys are about to take up stud duties themselves this breeding season, becoming the first cloned stallions to stand in Ireland.

Ridden by Trevor Coyle, Cruising won many Grand Prix competitions, including those at Aachen, Dortmund and Lucerne, and also appeared regularly on winning Nations’ Cup teams. Bred by Bord na gCapall in 1985, he was by the Irish Draught Sea Crest, a Grade A show jumper himself, out of the top international jumping mare Mullacrew (by Nordlys).

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Cruising, the only stallion in Ireland to have a 5* rating for his own show jumping performance and that of his offspring in both jumping and eventing, was one of the most influential sires of his generation. Among his top winners are the show jumpers Flexible and Mo Chroí and the eventers Mr Medicott and Mr Cruise Control.

Cruising was paraded before his legion of fans at the Dublin Horse Show last August, at the same time as Mo Chroi which was retiring from competition. He died at Hartwell Stud the following month.