Some of the world’s greatest event riders will be heading to the Green Glens Arena and adjoining Drishane Castle Demesne in 2018 as it was announced recently that the Co. Cork venue will host the Irish leg of the 2018 FEI Nations Cup™ Eventing Series. Established in 2012, the series runs from April to October each year and includes venues in Italy, Great Britain, Poland, the USA, France and Belgium. As ratified at the recent FEI General Assembly in Montevideo, Uruguay, Millstreet will stage the penultimate leg of the series from 22nd-26th August, ahead of the final in Boekelo (The Netherlands) in October.
Ballindenisk (Co. Cork) and Tattersalls Ireland (Co. Meath) have previously hosted the Irish Nations Cup leg and attracted strong representation from Great Britain and France to contest the home nation. In an exciting change for 2018, Millstreet will adopt the new Olympic Games format whereby teams will consist of three members and the final result will be decided in the show-jumping arena. The dressage and show-jumping phases will take place on all-weather surfaces while world-renowned course designer Mike Etherington-Smith (GBR) will be working with the Millstreet team once again to design a Championship-level track that takes in many of the historic features of the 300 acre Drishane Castle estate. The Nations Cup will run alongside the existing one, two and three star level classes at Millstreet.
The Green Glens Arena is no stranger to world-class equestrian competition. In recent years, the venue has hosted the FEI European Eventing Championships (Young Riders & Juniors) (2017), the FEI European Jumping Championships (Young Riders, Juniors & Children) (2016) and the FEI European Championships for Ponies (Dressage, Eventing, Jumping) (2014). In the past, the Green Glens Arena has also staged FEI World Cup Jumping Qualifiers while presently, the facility hosts Show-Jumping (CSI1*, CSI2*) and Eventing (1* – 3* level) competitions on a regular basis.
Speaking after the announcement, Millstreet director Thomas Duggan said;
It is an honour to be bringing international team competition of the highest order back to Millstreet. Having seen the extraordinary level of talent at our recent Pony (2014) and Junior/Young Rider (2016) European Championships, I’m looking forward to seeing what senior riders make of the Mike Etherington-Smith designed Cross Country track and the unique Irish welcome we offer to all visitors.
Further information will be made available in the coming months.