Opening Days of Millstreet International 2013
Ireland’s Daniel Coyle clinched victory in the first International class of the week at the Millstreet International Horse Show yesterday. Riding Conor Coyle’s “Athlet Van’t Lozerhof,” the two times HSI/Blue Grass Spring Tour Champion posted a superb clear in the Horse Sport Ireland sponsored qualifier for Sunday’s €50,000 Grand Prix. The rain that came in over Clara Mountain did nothing to deter Great Britain’s Guy Williams who took the top position in the Slaney Foods International 2 Phase aboard “Belinka VH Overlede Goed.” Having taken the top position in four of the international classes at last year’s show, the Kent-based rider will be hoping for similar success this week.
The Green Glens Arena has been a hive of activity this week, with nearly 8,000 entries received across 97 competitions. Competition got underway with a series of National and young horse classes on Tuesday and Wednesday. Richard Howley took the honours in Wednesday’s Self Built Ireland Boomerang Qualifier, jumping a superb clear with Ann Solis’ “Benedictus.” The large crowd that gathered in the afternoon sunshine to watch the Goresbridge Go for Gold National Eventing Discovery class were treated to a display of top class riding from Co. Meath’s Deirdre Reilly and “Stormhill Lad,” while last years winner Geoff Curran had to settle for second place with “The Jump Jet” who is shortly to be retired from eventing. Thursday’s Plassey Foods Millstreet Ruby Qualifier went the way of Gerard Clarke who took two of the top three places with “Scoobie is our Man” and “Westside Madona.” Gerard O’ Neill slotted into second position with “Dondoctro Ryal K.”
The action continues at Millstreet until Sunday with plenty of top class International and National competitions still to come. Of the 8 International classes (including three Longines World Ranking classes), the €50,000 Millstreet International Grand Prix is the main highlight, taking place on Sunday 18th August. Once again, Millstreet is delighted to host the final of the Connolly’s RED MILLS GBI Showjumping tour. Having included competitions at Chepstow (Wales), Mullingar, The Royal Highland Show (Scotland) and the British Masters (Southview, England), the €10,000 Leading Rider Prize will be determined by the outcome of the Grand Prix. With “Points and a half” on offer, current GBI contenders Steven Whitaker, Alexander Butler and Richard Howley will each be hoping the main competition goes their way.
This evening’s Irish Farmer’s Journal Young Irelander Final looks set to be one of the strongest showcases of three year old horses in recent years while Saturday’s Irish Field sponsored National Discovery Final will also provide a fascinating insight into the International showjumping horses of the future.