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Irish-bred horses dominate at Blenheim Palace International Horse Trials 2013

General September 17, 2013

Blenheim Palace CCI3* saw Aoife Clark make history by becoming the first Irish rider to win the prestigious event. This victory was made all the sweeter by the fact that her ride, Fenyas Elegance, is also Irish bred. Fenyas Elegance, owned and bred by West Cork’s PJ Hegarty, is a nine year-old Irish Sport Horse mare by Ricardo Z (ZANG) out of Fenya (ISH), by Good Thyne (USA) (TB).

“This means a huge amount. She’s been a star this week, and is at just the right age to be looking at the World Equestrian Games and Rio [2016 Olympic Games],” said Aoife (Horse & Hound)
“I knew I had to go clear,” Clark said. “We’ve only had one showjumping rail down all year, but there was still pressure.”

It is therefore no great surprise that Fenya showjumped consistently in Ireland up to 1.20m level before producing her first foal, Fenyas Elegance, in 2004.

Fenyas Elegance & Aoife Clark. Photo credit: Eventing Nation

Fenyas Elegance & Aoife Clark. Photo credit: Eventing Nation

In total Irish bred horse claimed four of the top five places in the CCI3* class. USA’s Clarke Montgomery and the Irish Sport Horse gelding Loughan Glen took 3rd place. Bred by Daragh Geraghty, Galway, Loughan Glen is by Limmerick (HOLST) out of Tattymacall Mustard (ISH), by the Thoroughbred sire Cut the Mustard (USA). Fourth place went Gemma Tattersall (GBR) and the Irish Thoroughbred Arctic Soul. This ten year-old gelding is by Luso (GB) (TB) out of Dream Cocktail (IRE) (TB), by Roi Danzi (TB), and was bred by Michael Whitty. Highand Ford (ISH) and Richard Jones (GBR) completed the top five combinations. This thirteen year-old gelding is by Highland King (ISH) out of Forest Mistral (IRIP), by Cruising (ISH), and was bred in County Kildare by Diana Warrington.

Irish-bred horses also claimed four of the top ten places in the CIC*** 8/9YO class. William Fox-Pitt (GBR) and Fernhill Pimms (AES) took the number one slot. By Ard VDL Douglas (KWPN) out of the Thoroughbred mare Celestial Drive, by Dublin Taxi (TB), Fernhill Pimms was bred by Imelda Creighton of Old Mill House Stud.

The breeders were delighted with the win adding “Pimms is from an extremely successful performance family which includes Celestial Touch and Sugar Brown Babe to name just a few. He was the best looking and moving athlete bred so far at Old Mill House Stud”.

Fernhill Pimms & William Fox-Pitt.  Photo credit: Horse & Hound

Fernhill Pimms & William Fox-Pitt.
Photo credit: Horse & Hound

Following closely in second place was Chris Burton and the Irish Sport Horse Graf Liberty. Another by Lougherne stud’s Limmerick (HOLST), this one is out Lisheen Star (ISH), by Cavalier Royale (HOSLT), and bred by Brian Livingstone in County Down.
Australia’s Bill Levett claimed fourth on his Master Imp (TB) sired Irish Sport Horse Improvise. Bred in Kilkenny by Anastasia Lawlor, Improvise is out of Diamond Wood (TB), by Marwood (TB). The same combination placed second in Tattersalls CCI3* this summer.
Carol Gee’s Fernhill prefix was flying high with the addition of Fernhill Quality Street (ISH) to the top ten, in 8th place. This nine year old Irish Sport Horse gelding was bred Ronan Sheehan of Cuffesgrange Sport Horse in Kilkenny. Fernhill Quality Street (IH) is by OBOS Quality 004 (OLD) out of Coolmore Joyita (ISH), by Puissance (ISH) and was ridden by Australia’s Kevin McNab.

Blenheim Palace International horse trials 2013 has been an outstanding showcase for the strength and success of the sport horse breeding industry in Ireland and for this the Irish breeders deserve great credit.


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