Connolly’s Red Mills National Show Jumping Championships20th July 2012
Sligo club claims two derby titles over testing track
Benbulben Riding Club claimed two of the four derby competitions on offer at the Connolly’s Red Mills National Show Jumping Championships last Sunday at Mullingar Equestrian Centre, Co. Westmeath.
The first of the titles was won by Deirdre McDonald for the Sligo based club in the Connolly’s Red Mills open division after a two horse jump-off.
The Benbulben was first of the two riders to take on the reduced track but returned with two on the floor from Nisqually De May in a time of 36.46.
Donegal Gaeltacht rider Patricia Warren was next in on Colourado Kid and but again returned home with two poles down but her time of 39.50 kept her off the top spot.
The advanced intermediate derby had a more dramatic finish with four of the 37 starters making it through to the jump-off.
Mullingar’s Alison Mortell was first to take on the shortened track but B.B.B. Bossy Boots picked up four penalties at the second fence in a time of 39.39. Julie Ann Hannon entered next and retuned home in a slightly slower time of 39.73 but with all fences intact for the Meath club.
The time was beatable as Myles McGowan proved when he crossed the line in dramatic fashion on board Journey Man. The eight year old gelding, took a big jump over the last and this left the Benbulben rider clinging on but he fell off just after crossing the line to win the class in a time of 36.97. Clubmate Kelly Fergus couldn’t better the time on Art Monarch to give McGowan the honours.
The Robert Fagan designed course included up to 16 fences with 20 jumping efforts in the main sand arena at the centre where clear rounds were few and far between.
50 riders contested the intermediate division where eight riders went forward to the jump-off.
Pathfinder, Claire Leahy, produced an unbeatable time on board Balsloe Ebony of 38.39 with all of the fences intact to win Kilrainy’s only class of the day.
The Navan resident had over two seconds to spare over second placed Rosemary Hughes on Tinny Cross Bob for Annaharvey.
West Kerry’s Jerome Foley won the advanced open derby after Portphilip Dioscruise returned home with just one pole down in a time of 118.17. Last years winner, Anne Lambert, had to settle for second place after Killinick Bouncer crossed the line with 8 penalties in a time of 106.93.
In a change from previous the advanced primary and primary riders contested an optimum time based accumulator competition where competitors were also given the option of a joker fence.
25 riders took part in the advanced primary division where eight riders reached maximum points but the clock favoured Lawrence Smyth. The Donegal Gaeltacht rider was almost 10 seconds off the target of 68 seconds on Jenny’s Jigsaw.
However, it was a close enough contest as second placed Christine McWilliams on Guinness Mac was just over a second off Smyth’s time.
Five riders reached the maximum target in the primary division where Niamh Macken won the spoils. The Ballinasloe members time of 88.19 was good enough for the red ribbon.