EVENTING Ireland’s Northern Region held their final event of the 2019 season at Knockany, courtesy of Harold and Jenny Lusk.
Rafael Suarez of Portmore Equestrian Centre, Show jumping Course Designer, built two superb courses in the large outdoor arena, which certainly added influence to the overall results.
Luke Drea from Gorey, Co. Wexford, was the visiting Cross-Country Course Designer and he undoubtedly made his mark, providing exciting challenges across all classes.
Robyn McCluskey won the Open 110 class with her mother, Denise McCluskey’s, 14-year-old ‘Cyrano’ gelding, ‘Rum Jumbie’, with whom she competed as an individual at the Young Rider Eventing Championships in Maarsbergen in July. This week, they added just a few cross-country time penalties to their first phase mark to finish almost four points clear of Melanie Wrynn on the Tattersalls winner, ‘Ardeo Artic Wolf’.
The EI 110 class saw Clare Abbott deliver two perfect jumping phases to finish on her dressage score with Sarah Riley’s ‘DHI No Fear’, a six-year-old gelding by ‘Non Stop’.
Finishing one point behind was Steven Smith riding Virginia Maguire’s seven-year-old ‘September Storm’ gelding, ‘Handsome Starr’.
There were just two starters in the EI 110 J class, where Jodie O’Leary added nothing to her first phase mark with ‘My Ballintoghers Cracker Jack’ to claim the win, ahead of Tara Dixon and ‘Master Smart’ and, again, just two combinations challenged the EI 110 Amateur class. This was won by Florence Campbell and her ‘Marlon’ gelding, ‘Emperor G’, runners up at Vesey Lodge. Lindsay McIvor and ‘Drumreagh Actress’ slotted into second place.
Christina Turley took centre stage on the podium in the EI 100 Amateur class with ‘Ann’s Bob’, having kept a clean slate across the jumping phases to leave a three and a half point margin over second placed Liam Moran from Swords with ‘Timpany Flight Hero’.
Simone Leathem had the EI 100 P field all to herself, following the unfortunate elimination at the middle phase of Robert Fitzgerald and ‘Donaghpatrick Joker’. Simone completed the competition to take the win.
Tara Dixon rose to the fore in the EI 100 J class on board her mother’s six-year-old mare, ‘Quick Step Diamond’, finishing on her dressage score, two points clear of Hugo O’Neill, who occupied the runner up spot for the second consecutive week on ‘Pulldoaran’.
Meantime, in the EI 100 class, Adam Haugh led from the outset on ‘Taptoo’, his five-year-old bay mare by ‘Shannondale Sarco St Ghyvan’ to finish almost four points clear of Steven Smith and Ann Bowe’s ‘Hi Mr Henry’, a six-year-old gelding by ‘Cruising Harry’.
Margery Warnock from Ballyhalbert, who returned to eventing this year, claimed victory in the EI 90 Amateur class with her ‘Almiro’ gelding, ‘Butterfly Charm’, adding just a few time penalties to her dressage score to give them a two point margin over Rhonda Hall and ‘Bill Little’.
15-year-old Sophie Grainger from Belfast took the red rosette in the EI 90 class on her maiden outing with her father’s nine-year-old piebald mare, ‘Chanel No 5’, on whom she had previously show jumped, hunted and competed at working hunter, having been placed third in the evening performance at Cavan. However, it would appear that she has caught the eventing bug and is already very much looking forward to next season. They finished fractionally ahead of David O’Connor riding ‘Tullymurray Silver Lining’, a lovely four-year-old gelding by ‘King of Mourne’, who was just completing their fourth event.
A very delighted Anna McCaldin picked up her winning rosette in the EI 90 Pony class, where she was competing with Fran Rowlatt-McCormick’s ‘Mon Ami Tonnerre’, with which her son’s Ben and Tom had three years of fun and success. Katie Haire slotted into second place, less than a point behind with ‘My Galway Girl’, having won the previous two events.
Northern Region would like to express thanks to Harold and Jenny Lusk for hosting this event and to Luke Drea for the cross-country design as well as Course Builders, Cyril McElroy, Neil Knox and Alan Irwin. Thanks, too, to Rafael Suarez for the Show jumping course design.
Since this is the final NR event of 2019, organisers extend thanks to all the landowners, who have opened their gates to the Northern Region this year and without these marvellous venues we would not have a sport.
Thanks, too, to all the sponsors, who have been very loyal over the years. Their contribution is hugely appreciated, as is their support and association.
Finally, heartfelt thanks go to each and every volunteer who has helped this year. Organisers are most fortunate to have this pool of hard working, professional supporters. The sport just would not function without their invaluable input. They are certainly not fair weather workers, as everyone experienced this year. Their commitment and dedication to the sport is legendary and deeply appreciated.
The next event for Northern Region is the Annual Awards Ball, which takes place in La Mon on Saturday, November 16. Tickets will go on sale very shortly.
Saturday, September 7
EI 110 Open: 1) Robyn McCluskey, Rum Jumbie; 2) Melanie Wrynn, Ardeo Artic Wolf; 3) Conor Savage, Leapfrog.
EI 110: 1) Clare Abbott, DHI No Fear; 2) Steven Smith, Handsome Starr; 3) Steven Smith, Fredie Fox; 4) Johnny Mulligan, Dilly Diamond Queen; 5) Suzanne Hagan, Futuristic; 6) Steven Smith, Izzietop.
EI 110 J: 1) Jodie O’Leary, My Ballintoghers Cracker Jack; 2) Tara Dixon, Master Smart.
EI 110 Amateur: 1) Florence Campbell, Emperor G; 2) Lindsay McIvor, Drumreagh Actress.
EI 100 Amateur: 1) Christina Turley, Ann’s Bob; 2) Liam Moran, Timpany Flight Hero; 3) Sarah Kee, Ballymullan Jodie; 4) Dawn Clerkin, The Sailors Girl; 5) Scott McIvor, Sport of Kings; 6) Christine Milligan, Tullymurry Seana.
EI 100 P: 1) Simone Leathem, Knockjames Jedward.
EI 100 J: 1) Tara Dixon, Quick Step Diamond; 2) Hugo O’Neill, Pulldoaran; 3) Aoife Cronin, Newgrange Danny Boy; 4) Felicity Ferris, Deepspring Tookanoo.
EI 100: 1) Adam Haugh, Taptoo; 2) Steven Smith, Hi Mr Henry; 3) Clare Abbott, Mr Mighty; 4) Johnny Mulligan, Castleviews Gee Apollo; 5) Melanie Wrynn, Ardeo Castleconnor; 6) Casey Webb, Chinouk Van De Heihoek Z.
EI 90 Amateur: 1) Margery Warnock, Butterfly Charm; 2) Rhonda Hall, Bill Little; 3) Nicola Martin, Butter; 4) Nicky Nesbitt, Carrickview Saratoga; 5) Rachel Rooney, Ardnacashel Autumn; 6) Sarah Pannasch, Largymore Lass.
EI 90: 1) Sophie Grainger, Chanel No 5; 2) David O’Connor, Tullymurry Silver Lining; 3) Callum Fitzgerald, Dantzig Boy; 4) Jonathan Steele, R Showman; 5) Kiara Malcolmson, Drumaran Nigel; 6) Katie McKee, Essenar Luizza.
EI 90 P: 1) Anna McCaldin, Mon Ami Tonnerre; 2) Katie Haire, My Galway Girl; 3) Rebekah McKinstry, Cornhill Rose; 4) Gemma Murphy, Sillogue Sergie; 5) Alex O’Hare, Millbrae Abbie; 6) Annie O’Hare, Breaffy Boy 11.