The sun shone between heavy showers, but nothing dampened the spirits of the competitors on Saturday, October 24, at Omagh High School’s annual charity horse show.
Twenty nine schools from across counties Donegal, Tyrone, Fermanagh, Armagh and Londonderry were represented. Jumping commenced at 9.15am and continued throughout the day until 8.20pm when Castlederg High School’s Jenny Torrens claimed the Sperrin Springs 1 metre individual title.
Horse rugs had been sponsored by Omagh Equestrian and Countrywear while Boyd Bedding donated a palette of Blue Frog Shavings. TJ’s School of Motoring, Lyons Haulage, Sperrin Springs, Kerr Bros Bodyshop, WW Tyres, Happy Pets, Tyre-Tec, Bailey’s Meal, Thompson’s Farm Feeds and Jollyes sponsored other prizes.
McClintock Primary School collected the first trophy of the day with Ollie Bolton winning the Tyre-Stop Perpetual Shield in the Starter Stakes. This set the tone for McClintock’s day as they went on to win several prizes and were the most successful school overall. The fierce competition in the individual classes came to a climax as Kasey McLaughlin on My Friend Flicka from Loreto proved untouchable in the Kerr Bros Speed Class.
With the individual classes over, the tension mounted as the teams prepared to compete over challenging but fair courses prepared by Raymond Caldwell ably judged by Christopher Bogle.
An outstanding performance was put in by McClintock Primary School to claim first place in the novice inter-schools team class and the Primary School Cup while Fivemiletown College took home the Secondary School Trophy. On their first visit to the show, Loreto Community College from Milford, Co Donegal gave a flawless exhibition to claim the title in the open inter-schools class. Exhilarating performances from Tia Smith, McClintock Primary School and Jeni Lyons, Omagh Academy left them clear winners of the Individual Inter-schools titles.
At the end of a long but most enjoyable day, two hundred and seventeen rounds of jumping had been completed with the honours being distributed amongst all five counties represented. As a result, a presentation of £500 was made to Omagh Riding for the Disabled Group to help in their work and a further donation of £150 was made to Heartstart.
Show organiser, Mrs Gillian Quigley said: “We are indebted to the local businesses who have sponsored us, the staff of Ecclesville Equestrian Centre along with the many volunteers who assisted throughout the day, parents and friends of Omagh High School, the competitors who participated and all who supported us or helped in any way to make the day a fantastic success. The local RDA group provide an invaluable service to many young people in this area and Omagh High School is glad to be able to support them in their work. Some of our pupils have also benefited directly from Heartstart in Northern Ireland and it is rewarding to be able to support them.”
Starter Stakes - Tyre-Stop Shield: Ollie Bolton, Coco; double clears: Cara Garrity, Snowy; Leah McCreery, Lily; Nikita Thompson, Molly; Kaitlin McCrory, Truly; Nikita Thompson, Tornado; Nicole Lyons, Bubbilicious; Kaitlin Kelly, Zac. Tack & Turnout: Eunan Kelly, Bubble Bob.
Newcomers - Tyre-Tec Cup: Leah McCreery, Lily; Double Clears: Keeley McCarney, Ria; Nikita Thompson, Tornado; Nikita Thompson, Molly; Kaitlin Kelly, Zac; Niamh Donnelly, Sweetie; Ella McCarney, Maisie; Cobhlaith Donnelly, Mallon. Tack and Turnout: Ciara Owens, Lady T.
Newcomers Pairs - 9th Avenue Pizzeria Shield: 1. Kaitlin Kelly, Zac and Niamh Donnelly, Sweetie 2. Nikita Thompson, Tornado and Leah McCreery, Lily 3. Ella McCarney, Maisie and Cobhlaith Donnelly, Mallon
Novice 60cm - Omagh High School Cup: 1. Molly Troughton, Lenamore Lucia; 2. Rhianna Thompson, Penny; 3. Zara Keys, Romeo; 4. Sophie Gurney, Chelsea G; 5. Ellie May Johnston, Starry Nights; 6. Chloe Mitchell, Buster. Tack and Turnout: Ellie May Johnston, Starry Nights
Kerr Bros 70cm Speed Class: 1.Kasey McLaughlin, My Friend Flicka; 2. Tia Smith, Latsie Sunday; 3. Mairead Gartland, Puzzle; 4. Rhianna Thompson, Penny; 5. Jenny Dunlop, Cobra; 6. Katie Ritchie, Blue
Ride and Run: 1. Laura and Rachel Tuohey; 2. Jessica Curneen and Jeni Lyons; 3.Beth Wilson and Rhianna Thompson; 4.Tia and Lori Smith; 5. Fin and Thea Walsh; 6. Kasey McLaughlin and Mairead Gartland.
Inter-Schools Novice Team - Charlene Wilson Memorial Cup and Quigley Cup (11 teams): 1. McClintock P.S (Quigley Cup for Primary Schools); 2.Rainey Endowed Combined Team; 3.Fivemiletown College (Charlene Wilson Memorial Cup for Secondary Schools); 4.Omagh High School Black; 5. Enniskillen Collegiate; 6. Omagh High School White.
Novice Inter-Schools Individual - A.T.Morrow Memorial Cup: 1. Tia Smith, Latsie Sunday, McClintock P.S; 2. Hannah Shaw, Kilconey Princess, Enniskillen Collegiate (Kerr Bros Shield); 3. Zara Keys, Romeo, Carntall P.S; 4. Demi-Lee McKenna, Ria, Drumragh Integrated College; 5.David Clarke, Benny, Omagh High School; 6. Katie Ritchie, Blue, McClintock P.S.
Open Inter Schools Team - Lyons Haulage Cup: 1. Loreto Community College, Milford; 2.Holy Cross College, Strabane; 3. Omagh High School combined team; 4. Omagh Academy Gold; 5. Drumragh Integrated College; 6. Omagh Academy Navy
Open Inter-Schools Individual - Wagging Tails Trophy: 1. Jeni Lyons, Katy, Omagh Academy 2. Jenny Torrens, Lackaview Star Appeal, Castlederg High School; 3. Kyra Gilmour, Windsor, Drumragh Integrated College; 4. Betsy O’Reilly Duff, Loreto Community College; 5. Jill McGettigan, Loreto Community College; 6. Jane Early, Ginger Snap, Holy Cross Strabane.
Sperrin Springs 1 metre Individual: 1. Jenny Torrens, Lackaview Star Appeal, Castlederg High School; 2. Victoria Lockhart, Loreto Community College; 3. Roisin McNamara, Colour Magnet, Loreto; 4. Betsy O’Reilly Duff, Loreto Community College; 5. Jill McGettigan, Loreto Community College; 6. Chloe Moore, Joe Dazzle, Loreto Community College.
D. Hewitt Cup for Sponsorship: 1. Lucy McCann, Sacred Heart P.S, Tattyreagh; 2. Bethany Stewart, Omagh High School; 3. Grace McIvor, Omagh High School; 4. Ellie May Johnston, McClintock P.S; 5. Neamh Donnelly, St Lawrence’s P.S; 6. Jodie Lyons, Omagh High School.