As half of the UK was attending the Burghley International Horse Trials, the masses from the island of Ireland were attending their own mini-Burghley at Loughanmore by kind permission of Wilson Dennison.
The weather gods were in their favour and the bright sunshine served to show the fabulous 17th century demesne off to maximum effect.
There was a new layout this year and the showjumping and start of cross country took place in full view of the magnificent house which provided a photographer’s paradise.
The extensive acreage of the estate allowed for four top class galloping courses, designed by Adam Stevenson, which provided plenty of technical challenges across the board.
The feature class of the event was a leg of the Connolly’s Red Mills Super League at O/ CNC2* level which was won by Declan Cullen riding Seavaghan Ash, his nine year old gelding by Glenhill Gold. They finished on their dressage score just over one point clear of Steven Smith and his Contendro mare, Derryinver Girl.
Izzy Riley who is shortly heading to University in England after a gap year, spent in Eventing yards in England and Ireland, won the O/CNC1* class by a margin of two points with Emma Jackson’s Silken Allure. Nessa Briody was runner up with Tom Boy.
Susan Sullivan’s seven year old mare, Bellablue, won the CNC1* class with Jonathan Steele on board. They finished on an impressive dressage score marginally ahead of the early leader, Steven Smith and Lindsay Martin’s Lassban-Au-Revoir who picked up four showjumping penalties.
The Rowlatt-McCormick household had plenty to celebrate with two wins and a sixth placing. Ben topped the leaderboard in the Junior 1* class with a substantial lead on his mother’s ten year old gelding, Mon Ami Alme. Emily Cosgrove tucked in behind on Clonross Razzmatazz. Ben’s brother Tom, won the EI 90 P class with Elizabeth McMillan’s seven year old mare, Devlish Cavalier’s Girl on just their fourth outing.They added nothing to their first phase mark and finished four points clear of debutante, Sarah E Moore, with her mother, Lorna’s six year old mare, Kilgarvin Morning Misty who also kept both jumping phases clean.
There were five starters but just two finishers in the CNCP2* class where Kerry Magill had a runaway victory on Lisnahall Miss Toffee, followed by Cerys Howell and Essenar Luizza.
Aibhe McGrath made her trip from Ashbourne, Co Meath well worthwhile by securing victory in the CNC1* Amateur class following the withdrawal of the early leader, Denis Currie, due to injury and multiple showjumping penalties by most of the other contenders. Aibhe finished almost twelve points clear of second placed Emily Morris and Florida Bud.
The 100 Amateur class saw victory go to Kate Keenan with her lovely Je T’Aime Flamenco mare, Ardkyle Je T’Aime, on her sixth Appearance with the accomplished duo of Jayne Moore and Layla’s Way taking runner up position.
Local girl, Jessica McConnell gave a very good account of herself in the 100P class with Finding Nemo who had not evented since his win at Kircubbin exactly a year ago. There was no mistaking their win as they led from start to finish and maintained a three point margin over Chloe Fagan and Cadbury Cascade.
Olivia Quinn, partnering The Spin Doctor, for the second successive week delivered a superb display of horsemanship to take the win with Kate Shields and Melody Maker finishing one and a half points behind.
Lucca Stubington who was able to hack to the event with September Son, her mother’s eight year old gelding by September Storm claimed victory in the EI 100 class. They were runners up in this class at Tattersalls two weeks earlier. The combination moved up one spot from dressage by keeping all the coloured poles intact and finished one point clear of Anita Doherty and her little Connemara-bred ‘pocket rocket’ Powder Day.
A very heavily subscribed EI 90 class saw birthday girl, Lucy Hanna, claim her red rosette with a very impressive first phase mark which was her completion score. David O’Connor was the runner up with another Connemara bred gelding, Chestnut Hill Merlot who was making their first appearance as a partnership.
Christina Turley added to her impressive list of performances this season with Ann’s Bob by winning the EI90 Amateur class on her dressage score, half a point ahead of Sarah Logan riding As If By Magic.
A spokesperson added: “Once again, sincere thanks to the Dennison Family for hosting this very special event and to all our stalwart volunteers who turned out in force to ensure that all three phases ran smoothly. Special thanks to ‘RJ’ who did sterling work over long hours assisting Adam Stevenson with the course building.”
O/CNC2*: 1. Declan Cullen, Seavaghan Ash; 2. Steven Smith, Derryinver Girl; 3. Patrick Whelan, Footfall; 4. Emily Corbett, Leapfrog; 5. Jonathan Steele, Centrestage; 6. Steven Smith, Donogue Big Ronnie.
O/CNC1*: 1. Izzy Riley, Silken Allure; 2. Nessa Briody, Tom Boy; 3. Catherine Robinson, Excalibur.
CNC1*: 1. Jonathan Steele, Bellablue; 2. Steven Smith, Lassban-Au-Revoir; 3. John Gavin, Toome Ramiro Pippin; 4. Fiona Cooper, Gortshalgan; 5. Trevor Smith, Luxey; 6. Emily Corbett, Sportsfield Cosmo.
CNCJ1*: 1. Ben Rowlatt-McCormick, Mon Ami Alme; 2. Emily Cosgrove, Clonross Razzmatazz; 3. Hollie Smith, Anvil Lodge Pinocchio; 4. Elena Mullen, SBT Upmarket.
CNCP2*: 1. Kerry Magill, Lisnahall Miss Toffee; 2. Cerys Howell, Essenar Luizza.
CNC1* Amateur: 1. Aibhe McGrath, Tredstep Renaissance Man; 2. Emily Morris, Florida Bud; 3. Aoibheann Morgan, Hey Aussie; 4. Aoife Carr, Tyra MB; 5. Denis Coakley, Prince Louis.
EI 100 Amateur: 1. Kate Keenan, Ardkyle Je Taime; 2. Jayne Moore, Layla’s Way; 3. Wendy Seymour, Carrick Diamond Lilly; 4. Scott McIvor, Sport of Kings; 5. Sarah Irvine, City Vintage; 6. Aoife Dunlop, Balloo Hollow.
EI 100: 1. Lucca Stubington, September Son; 2. Anita Doherty, Powder Day; 3. Steven Smith, Handsome Starr; 4. Johnny Mulligan, Omard Honey Factor; 5. Johnny Mulligan, Tynan Forever; 6. Camilla Speirs, Omard Hawaii Lady.
EI100J: 1. Olivia Quinn, The Spin Doctor; 2. Katherine Shields, Melody Maker; 3. Katherine Duffy, Slaneyside Aldatus Flight; 4. Kara Stanbridge, Barberton; 5. Alanna Doherty, Clonfinn Lara; 6. Hannah Morrow, My Good Thyne Girl.
EI100P: 1. Jessica McConnell, Finding Nemo; 2. Chloe Fagan, Cadbury Cascade; 3. Charlotte Keers, Western Ocala; 4. Ellen Douglas, Rock Melody; 5. Amy Tubman, Cora Delight; 6. Tom Rowlatt-McCormick, Mon Ami Tonnerre.
EI90: 1. Lucy Hanna, Rock Storm; 2. David O’Connor, Chestnut Hill Merlot; 3. Emily Corbett, Lachain Jack; 4. Amanda Goldsbury, Right On Q; 5. David O’Connor, House Elf; 6. Johnny Mulligan, Bonmahon Quick Step.
EI90 Amateur: 1. Christina Turley, Ann’s Bob; 2. Sarah Logan, As If By Magic; 3. Jenny Nixon, Coolmount Cruise; 4. Joanne Cairns, Made You Look; 5. Lindsay Martin, Bartez; 6. Kathryn McCaughan, Artistic Design.
EI90P: 1. Tom Rowlatt- McCormick, Devlish Cavalier’s Girl; 2. Sarah E Moore, Kilgarvin Morning Misty; 3. Robyn Fagan, Mulcair Lad; 4. Ross Lyons, Triggernometry; 5. Felicity McConnell, Rickamore Sport; 6. Alex Turley, Marshallstown Summer.