THOMAS O’BRIEN AND ULLRICH WIN THE SECOND LEG OF THE H.S.I/CONNOLLY’S RED MILLS SPRING KildareInternationalredmillssince1908TOURHorse Sport irelandGetAttachment[2] (2)SJC_GFX_geroneill-10



      Writes Brian Hennessy

Co Galway’s Thomas O’Brien claimed a decisive victory, in the second round of the Horse Sport Ireland/Connolly’s RED MILLS Spring Tour at Kildare International Equestrian Centre, finishing over two seconds ahead of his nearest challenger.

Riding the thirteen year old bay gelding “Ullrich”, who is owned by Niamh Kehoe from Co Westmeath, O’Brien, who is based at his family’s own Galway Equestrian Centre in Athenry Co Galway, was first to jump against the clock, posting a clear target time (40.73), that was to prove unbeatable.

“I had a plan going into the arena and I stuck to it, I had a long wait with 11 in the jump off and as everyone knows it’s never over in Show Jumping until that last horse jumps”.

“We bought Ullrich (by Emmilion out of a Concorde dam), in Holland as a four year old and we later sold him to his current owner Niamh Kehoe who herself jumped him in Amateur classes. My brother David then picked up the ride again and they won the Cavan Indoor Derby when Ulrich was just a seven year old.

I was runner up in a few Connaught Grand Prix’s last year, and I’m delighted with this win at Kildare” commented Thomas O’Brien afterwards.

Kildare International Equestrian Centre sponsored the competition with €2,500 on offer for the twenty – five starters.

All of the top five finishers posted double clear rounds including Co Armagh’s Conor Mc Eneaney, who finished runner up with Moonlite Cavalier (43.22), this same combination carrying forward the excellent form they showed in the opening round of the series at Cavan, where they finished in fifth place.

Another rider in the prizes at Cavan was Galway’s Olive Clarke and she collected more valuable league points at Kildare with Kofi Annan (Colander x Baloubet du Rouet) finishing third in a time of 44.30 seconds.

Kildare rider Derek McConnell and the Captain Clover gelding Oak Park Clover also posted an excellent double clear (44.40) to take fourth, just ahead of Kilkenny junior rider Anna Carway, finishing fifth with Ajaccio (45.27) who is by the sire Carentino out of a dam by the recently deceased  Quidam De Revel.

The top six was completed by Gemma Phelan who made the journey from Co Waterford worthwhile finishing sixth with RVS Harley Ger (by Harlequin Du Carel), they posted the fastest four fault score of the jump-off in 45.18 seconds.

The HSI/Connolly’s RED MILLS Spring Tour moves to Co Louth on Sunday (02/03/2014).

Forty – four horses and riders will line out at Ravensdale Lodge, including last week’s winner Daniel Coyle who will ride three horses in the competition, while Emily Turkington, who filled both second and third places in the opening round at Cavan, is also triple handed and both riders will be hoping to add to their points tally.

 O Reillys Wholesale Newry sponsor Sunday’s round of the series at Ravensdale, with €2,500 on offer in the main event which starts at 3pm.

 The Horse Sport Ireland/Connollys RED MILLS Spring Tour, is also supported by the Show Jumpers Club, ShowjumpingIreland, Castlefield Sport Horses, Thermatex, Platinum by Harry Dabbs, Darragh Equestrian Solutions, and

 RESULT –  H.S.I/Connolly’s RED MILLS Spring Tour  –  Kildare International.

1st Thomas O Brien/Ullrich 0/0 40.73 2nd Conor Mc Eneaney/Moonlite Cavalier 0/0 43.22 3rd Olive Clarke/Kofi Annan 0/0 44.30 4th Derek McConnell/Oak Park Clover 0/0 44.40 5th Anna Carway/Ajaccio 0/0 45.27 6th Gemma Phelan/RVS Harley Ger 0/4 45.18 7th Patrick Byrne/BGS Courage 0/4 48.96 8th Conor Mc Eneaney/Kings Best 0/4 52.97

25 starters 

11 into jump off

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