Ailsa’s ‘Grateful For Gold’ as Northern Region event returns to Kircubbin

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Once again competitors made their way along the Ards Peninsula to Kircubbin for the latest Northern Region event. It was the third trip to the O’Flynn family home this season where the legendary welcome awaited everyone.

The early arrivals received their customary breakfast courtesy of Karen O’Flynn, who, despite suffering an accident to her finger earlier in the week, was still very much in charge of operations on Saturday morning.

The husband and wife duo had once again made a very quick change of courses to give riders a complete different set of challenges over the expertly decorated and dressed fences.

Terry Johnston’s ten year old Porsch gelding, Hi Happy Harry, enjoyed back to back wins in the O/CNC1* class under the guidance of Steven Smith who also managed to clock up a second placing with Mimi Falb’s Ghareeb gelding, Ballyward.

Tori Dixon and her six year old gelding, Mawillan, took top spot in the CNC1* class, adding just two showjumping time penalties to her first phase mark to finish half a point ahead of Rachel Rendle and Ballyvalley Bay who finished on their dressage score.

The Tattersalls International Junior 1* winner, Katie Riley and Versace Biscuit, repeated that success at Kircubbin, finishing marginally ahead of Holly Boal riding Bonmahon Flash, a seven year old gelding by Bonmahon Master Blue.

There were just four starters in the CNCP2* class where Grace Adams from Maynooth claimed the victory on board Myshall Rodge with Rocco Quinn, who was double handed in the class took second place.

The CNC1* amateur class saw Denis Currie returning to the central podium spot on Arodstown Aramis, finishing on his first phase score over six points clear of Kathryn Graham riding her Chill Out gelding, Flush Hill Fendi.

North Leinster’s Lesley-Anne Lyons and the 20 year old dun gelding, Rupert Bear, benefitted from a disappointing showjumping score for the early leader, Jayne Moore and Laylas Way, to take the win in the EI 100 Amateur class where Sarah Irvine slotted into second place with City Vintage.

Virgina Maguire’s six year old gelding, Handsome Starr, picked up a red rosette in the EI 100 with Steven Smith in a class where showjumping penalties made a significant impact on the final result. Anita Doherty, the early leader with her Connemara-bred gelding, Powder Day, was more than content with her second placing after knocking a coloured pole.

There were just two starters in the EI100P class where Amy Tubman swept to victory with Corha Delight, pursued by Tori Jewiss and Carraigoir Blaze.

There were also just two starters in the EI 100 class where Caitie Slater moved up one place from last week to take the win on Elaine Douglas’s seven year old dun gelding, Rock Tempo. Charlotte Leslie and Marcaigh Star were runners up.

Ailsa Martin and Grateful For Gold were best of the twenty starters in the EI 100 Amateur class. Her victory was never in doubt as she led from the outset with a determination to finish inside the time, which she achieved almost three points clear of an equally delighted Georgina Brown and Ballycreen Milady on just their fourth outing.

There was double celebrations in the Dixon household as Charlotte joined her sister in the winning stakes. Charlotte took victory in the EI90 class with her five year old, Irish Amigo, on their maiden outing. They kept an impressively clean jumping sheet, adding just a fraction of a cross country penalty to their flatwork mark to finish over one point clear of David O’Connor and House Elf, who occupied the runner up spot four weeks in a row in a highly competitive and heavily subscribed class.

Felicity McConnell led from the outset in the EI 90P class with Joyce McConnell’s Rickamore Sport. They finished seven points clear of Megan Nelson and Balnashallog Goldfinch.

A spokesperson commented: “A huge debt of gratitude goes to Eamonn and Karen O’Flynn for the use of their fabulous premises and for the cordial welcome to everyone.

“Thanks, too, to all the helpers and volunteers on the day, many of whom travelled long distances to be with us to allow our sport to function.”

Full results

O/CNC1*: 1. Steven Smith, Hi Happy Harry; 2. Steven Smith, Ballyward; 3. Emma Jackson, Silken Allure; 4. Emma Jackson, Magheradrummond Lad; 5. Steven Smith, Winchester.

CNC1*: 1. Tori Dixon, Mawillan; 2. Rachel Rendle, Ballyvalley Bay; 3. Steven Smith, Newferry Jagermeister; 4. Matthew Johnston, Bluestone Jupiter; 5. Jonathan Steele, LKC diamond Legacy; 6. Jonathan Steele, R Wee Builder.

CNCJ1*: 1. Katie Riley, Versace Biscuit; 2. Holly Boal, Bonmahon Flash; 3. Hollie Smith, Anvil Lodge Pinnochio; 4. Katherine Shields, Melody Maker; 5. Hannah Adams, Millchem Ardeo.

CNCP2*: 1. Grace Adams, Myshall Rodge; 2. Rocco Quinn, Knockagarron Fear Bui Princess; 3. Katie McKee, OMS Dark Prospecr; 4. Rocco Quinn, Knockagarron Fear Bui Phoenix.

CNC1* Amateur: 1. Denis Currie, Arodstown Aramis; 2. Kathryn Graham, Flush Hill Fendi; 3. Emily Morris, Florida Bud; 4. Hazel Hilland, Lisbane Butterfly; 5. Holly McClenaghan, Miranda; 6. Aoibheann Morgan, Hey Aussie.

EI 100; 1. Lesley-Anne Lyons, Rupert Bear; 2. Sarah Irvine, City Vintage; 3. Hilary Redmond, Pulldoaran; 4. Holly McClenaghan, Blacklaw Pelorus; 5. Jayne Moore, Laylas Way; 6. Lynsey Napier-Sneddon, Carsonstown Porsch.

EI 100 P: 1. Amy Tubman, Corha Delight; 2. Tori Jewiss, Carraigoir Blaze; ; EI 100J; 1. Caitie Slater, Rock Tempo; 2. Charlotte Leslie, Na Marcaigh Star.

EI 100; 1. Steven Smith, Handsome Starr; 2. Anita Doherty, Powder Day; 3. Johnny Mulligan, Bright Boy; 4. Adam Haugh, Varande; 5. Joanne Jarden, Quarryhill Calypso; 6. Jonathan Steele, Homegrown Ajax.

EI 90 Amateur: 1. Ailsa Martin, Grateful For Gold; 2. Georgina Brown, Ballycreen Milady; 3. Hannah Thompson, Jemeela Charm; 4. Christina Turley, Ann’s Bob; 5. Katie Wray, Easy Dun; 6. Laura Kee, Ballymullan Jodie.

Ei 90; 1. Charlotte Dixon, Irish Amigo; 2. David O’Connor, House Elf; 3. Janie Cairns, Cross Georgina; 4. Emma Jackson, Rubane Candy; 5. Leah Knight, Aghagallon; 6. Victoria Clarke, Carrick Diamond Connie.

EI 90 P: 1. Felicity McConnell, Rickamore Spoirt; 2. Megan Nelson, Balnashallog Goldfinch; 3. Robert Fitzgerald, Donaghpatrick Joker; 4. Alex Turley, Marshallstown Summer.