The large number of visitors who came to Portrush for the annual Raft Race had an added attraction when the Causeway Coast Community Showjumpers held their two-day showjumping festival in the Bowl Arena.
The show opened on Saturday with bright Spring sunshine which prevailed throughout the day providing excellent conditions.
The opening class on the first day was set at 90 cm and was won by the popular Ballycastle rider Liam McGarry riding his own Javes Jonny Red with Charlene Breslin, Jane Kealey and Jaqui McKinney filling the minor placings.
Class 2 at 1 metre had an entry of 24 and was won in some style by Donegal girl Ashlene Doherty on Carney Bridge Lady Leap with Victoria Wharry in second place and local girl Harriet Bell in third place.
Class 3 at 1.10 metres had a strong entry of 38 and produced some exciting sport for the large number of spectators. The first and second places went to Liam McGarry with Maddybenny rider Tegan White in third place on her new event horse Lenamore Lux.
Class 4 at 1.20 metres went to Tegan White again on Lenamore Lux with Garry Marshall in second place on Claudio.
The final class of the day at 1.30 metres was won in impressive style by the young Donegal rider Simon Scott with Lisa Boyle on her own Bannside Boy and Gary Marshall on Claudio filling the minor placings.
The opening class on Sunday was for the Norrie’s Roulston Memorial Trophy. This class at 85 cm was for riding club riders who had qualified from previous shows and was won by a delighted Jane Kealey on her own horse Cruising on Red with south Derry rider Joanne Wilkinson in second place on her own Yellow Moon with Justin O’Hara on Patricia Dalton’s Vales Blue Flag Beach in third place.
The second class was at 1 metre and with a strong entry of 28 produced some excellent show jumping. First place went to Brittany McAfee on Ballysheen Lad with the ever reliable Aoife Carr on Kaliedescope taking second place.
The third class at 1.10 metres attracted an entry of 37 and produced some exciting showjumping against the clock. Early in the class Tegan White had set a very fast time on her event ride Texan Style on which she has had a very successful start to the season but local farrier Lee Johnston had other ideas and riding Eavan White’s O’Harabrook produced a flying display to take over the lead and win the class. Incidentally O’Harabrook and Texan Style are by the same sire.
The fourth class at 1.20 metres attracted another large entry of 31 horses. The first two places went to young Donegal rider Mark Harley on his own Kalando with the popular Raphoe businessman and all round sportsman J P McGranaghan in second place on his own Lismoon Luidam. The quality of the showjumping in this class set the tone for the Blue Grass Grand Prix at 1.35 metres which was to follow.
Guest course designer for this Grand Prix was senior National Course Designer Fred Guthrie who was no stranger to the subtle slopes of the Bowl Arena. This was a trade mark track which demanded accurate riding and power jumping.
Only two of the twenty two entrants went clear in the first round with eight others incurring only four faults. In the jump off between the two clears the win went to the Egyptian rider Sam El Daman on Joanne Sloane Allen’s WKD Diva with Jordan Coyle taking second place on Amiro VH.
The showjumping on Sunday was very kindly sponsored by Mr Garth Godfrey, owner of Garth’s Take Away food outlets in Coleraine, local farrier Lee Johnston, Maddybenny Leisure and local motor traders Joe and Lisa Boyle.
Welcome visitors to the show on Sunday were the Sloane family from Templepatrick with their WKD team of international Showjumpers. The Sloane family have been supporting the Causeway Coast Community Showjumpers for many years.
Results - Saturday
90cm: 1st, Javas Jonny Red, Liam McGarry; 2nd, Captain Pleasure, Charlene Breslin; 3rd, Cruising on Red, Jane Kealey; 4th, Emiel, Jaqui McKinney
1 Metre: 1st, Carnmoney Bridge Lady, Aisling Doherty; 2nd, Lady, Victoria Wharry; 3rd, Ballybreagh Ryan’s Girl, Harriet Bell; 4th, Sky Cruise, Karen Heron; 5th, Tacoma Cruise, Zoe White; 6th, Ant hea Moffett, Pumbas
1.10 Metres: 1st, Javas True Colours, Liam McGarvey; 2nd, Senator 180, Liam McGarvey; 3rd, Lenamore Lux, Tegan White; 4th, Father’s Footsteps, Alastair Wilson; 5th, Kaleidoscope, Shannon Cole
1.20 Metres: 1st, Lenamore Lux, Tegan White; 2nd, Claudio, Gary Marshall; 3rd, Jasmine Tide, Simon Scott; 4th, Carnmoney Bridge Sister, Simon Scott; 5th, Bobby, Laura Reid; 6th, Ardnacastle, Philip Gaw
1.30 Metres: 1st, Carnmoney Bridge Diva, Simon Scott; 2nd, Bannside Boy, Lisa Boyle; 3rd, Claudia, Gary Marshall
80cm: 1st, Cruising on Red, Jane Kealey; 2nd, Joanne Wilkinson, Joanne Wilkinson; 3rd, Vales Blue Flag Beach, Justin O’Hara
1 Metre: 1st, Ballysheen Lad, Brittany McAfee; 2nd, Kaleidoscope, Aoife Carr; 3rd, Western Annie, Sean Nangle; 4th, Ballyreagh Ryan’s Girl, Harriet Bell; 5th, Wakley’s Clover, Hannah Meneely; 6th, Javas Jonny Red, Liam McGarry
1.10 Metres: 1st, O’Harabrook, Lee Johnston; 2nd, Texan Style, Tegan White; 3rd, Lenamore Lux, Tegan White; 4th, Shanvey Diamond, Justin O’Hara; 5th, Crossmaglen Bandit, Charlotte Harding; 6th, Mulvin Line, Johnathan Smyth; 7th, Seaburg, Johnathan Smyth
1.20 Metres: 1st, Kalono, Mark Halley; 2nd, Lismeen Luidam, J P McGranaghan; 3rd, Javas True Colours, Liam McGarry; 4th, Hermes De Cavalier, J P McGranaghan; 5th, Dinlitto RK, Claire Doherty; 6th, Maul in Line, Johnathan Smyth; 7th, Down Stream, Lucy Hamilton
1.35 Metres: 1st, WDK Diva, Sam El Daman; 2nd, Amigo VH Winkenshof 2, Jordan Coyle; 3rd, Lenamore Donnatella, Kenneth Graham; 4th, Charlton Clio, Johnathan Smyth; 5th, Galway Bay Hummer, Edward Little; 6th, Calle, Sean Nangle; 7th, Javas True Colours, Liam McGarry; 8th, Claudio, Gary Marshall.