The eagerly awaited final of the Meadows Equestrian Centre’s TRI Inter-Schools Show Jumping League took place on Saturday on a rather wet spring day
The pressure of the final certainly took its toll with some of the most consistent combinations failing to secure the all important double clears which created great anticipation as to how the final league placings would pan out.
Both arenas got underway promptly at 9am and action continued unabated until darkness was just descending.
Again, this year, the success of the MEC League has led to an invitation for the winning teams and individuals to travel to the All Ireland Inter-Schools Show Jumping Final in Mullingar in April.
Down High School had another very successful day in Arena 1 with their Gold team taking third place in the Novice competition and winning the League overall. They were one of nine teams to finish on a zero score with Larne Grammar coming in fastest to take the win on the day just ahead of Ballyclare Secondary.
Individually, in the Novice section, the daily win went to Katie McCombe and Afandou, followed closely by the most consistent performer in the class, Daniel Moore and Lancelot Du Bois who was runner up on the day as well as in the league. The league win went to Lucy Morton and Tilly who had a two point margin over Daniel.
The Open Team leader board at the start of the day showed an eight point differential in the top two spots. The leaders, Ballymena Academy, had to settle for sixth place on the day but that was sufficient to ensure that they were crowned champions, just two points ahead of Down High Flyers.
The Open Individual class saw nerves clearly getting to some of the competitors. Josh Mark and Calinvella went into the final with a commanding lead and despite having an unfortunate pole in the first phase managed to hold onto his prime position. The win of the day went to a combination that have certainly made their mark this year - Rory Osbourne and Bella Bambino.
The Morton sisters were battling it out for supremacy in the Premier Individual competition which has turned into a showjumping showcase. Taking top spot this month was Kathryn Morton and Dominic which gave her sufficient points for third place overall but it was her sister Lucy and Bert who claimed their passport to the All Irelands by winning the championship.
Meantime, action in the Primary section got underway in arena two with a very excited group of 11 year olds and under. They have provided plenty of excitement and entertainment over the past five months and this month was no exception.
The first class is the 50cms Individual competition where you could easily believe it was the Agha Khan that was being competed for. It is amazing to see the professionalism of this very young group of pupils. These young riders have thoroughly impressed the judges month after month with their ability and enjoyment of the sport.
Lily Murphy and her amazing little pony Busby won on the day and gained sufficient points for an overall runner up placing. However, the champion was nine year old Andrew Sharvin and Archill Lass whose enthusiasm and delight were as bright as any beacon.
The Jolly Jumpers secured their fourth win of the season in the Primary Team event to guarantee their championship win ahead of second placed, Marvellous Mix Up Team.
In the 70cms individual section, where blinking could easily have meant you missing a round, it was Ballyclare Primary School pupil, Sam Jackson who flew around the arena to win the class ahead of Taylor McKnight and Killeshin Bambino from Bronte PS.
The Meadows Equestrian Centre would like to thank the sponsors, TRI Equestrian, Judy Maxwell of Baileys Horse Feeds and Lisburn Bowl whose generosity and support of the league is very much appreciated. Thanks, too, to all the judges, starters and arena parties in both locations as well as all the schools, together with their chefs d’equipe, who supported this very popular league.
Particular thanks go to the very dedicated and skillful tack and turn out judges, Denise Withers and Nikki Cullen, whose meticulousness was very evident in the respective winners.
The organisers wish all teams and individuals the very best of good luck as they proceed to represent the Northern Region in the All Ireland Schools’ Competition and very much look forward to hearing of their further successes.
Primary Individual – 50cms
1. Lily Murphy, Busby; 2. Daniel O’Sullivan-Toner, Elmos Delight; 3. Elizabeth McCracken, Star; 4. Grace Morton, Louie; 5. Amber Bradley, Flynn; 6. Elizabeth McCracken, Billy Frazer
Tack & Turn Out Winner - Daniel O’Sullivan-Toner, Elmos Delight
1. Andrew Sharvin, Archill Lass; 2. Lily Murphy, Busby; 3. Elizabeth McCracken, Billy Frazer; 4. Matthew Wilcock, Solar Eclipse; 5. Nicole Peoples, Forest Flash; 6. Daniel O’Sullivan-Toner, Elmos Delight
1. The Jolly Jumpers (Anna McErlean, Lily, Emma Burns, Peter, Ruby Kinkaid, Houdini, Benjamin Moore, Makers)
2. Chicks With Sticks (Molly Davidson, Monochrome Boy, Katie Robinson, Cloud, Taylor McKnight, Bambi, Charlotte McCracken, Blayneys Boy)
3. The Rapid Rebels (Fergus Emmett, Cash, Andrew Sharvin, Archill Lass, Amber Bradley, Flynn Rider, Ceoladh Crozier, Nat King Cole)
4. The Marvellous Mix Ups (Emma Bamford, Highbent Chardonnay, Molly McCartney, Darby O’Gill, Ella Lindsay, Waitwith Dynasty, Sophia Bingham, Prince Caspian)
5. Fabulous 4 (Mya McCullough, Windale Sapphire, Grace Morton, Louie, Thomas Patton, Rokeby Pepper, Sam Jackson, Ike)
Tack & Turn Out Winner - The Rapid Rebels
1. The Jolly Jumpers; 2. The Marvellous Mix Ups; 3. Chicks With Sticks 4. Rapid Rebels; 5. Fabulous 4
Primary Individual – 70cms
1. Sam Jackson, Ike, Ballyclare PS; 2. Taylor McKnight, Killeshin Bambino, Bronte PS; 3. Thomas Patton, Rokeby Pepper, Whitehead PS; 4. Ruby Kinkaid, Lismahon Houdini; 5. Charlotte McCracken, Billy Frazer, Moyallen PS; 6. Anna McErlean, Lilly, Rowandale PS
1. Sam Jackson, Ike; 2. Taylor McKnight, Killeshin Bambino; 3. Ruby Kinkaid, Lismahon Houdini; 4. Anna McErlean, Lilly; 5. Charlotte McCracken, Billy Frazer; 6. Peter Morton, Princess
1. Larne Grammar (Anna Jackson, Duke, Joel Peoples, The Ranger, Tyler Houston, Percy, Katie Lee Houston, Sky Lara)
2. Ballyclare Secondary (Katie Bamford, Tia, Jessica McConnell, Sport, Natasha McKernan, Princess Fantasia, Tori Jewiss, Tia)
3. Down High Gold (Abby Cummiskey, Holiday Graceful Lady, Abby Brown, Buckaroo, Abby Cummiskey, Blackjack, Zara Sharvin, Holiday Graceful Lady)
4. Victoria College (Lauren Carville, Volvo, Zara Craigs, Annaghmore Clover Boom,. Olivia Byrne, Buck Rogers, Vicky Fox, Lislaird Joni)
5. Saintfield High School (Bailie Dunn, Bug, Hannah Patterson, Ladybug, Hannah Bayfield, George, Ben Cousins, Tablo)
6. Hunterhouse Blue (Lucy Toombs, Suzie, Indie Bloomfield-Friars, Millparks Slievenagarragh, Sophie Lister Tinsley, Ginger Spirit, Gillian Grogan, Shadow)
Tack & Turn Out Winner - Ballymena Academy (Zoe Dickey, Cuffsgrange Popstar, Chloe Gillespie, Ginger, Katie McClean, Belle, Myah McClean, Apache)
1. Down High Gold
2. Hunterhouse Blue
4. Ballymena Academy
5. Larne Grammar
6. Victoria College
1. Katie McCombe, Afandou, Tandragee High School; 2. Daniel Moore, Lancelot Du Bois, Lurgan Junior High; 3. Megan Carson, Tynan Tobias, Ballynahinch High School; 4. Erin Carson, Kilgarry Breezer, Wellington College; 5. Lucy Morton, Petal, Killicomaine; 6. Lucy Morton, Tilly, Killicomaine
Tack & Turn Out Winner - Kerry Magill, Bonmahon Quickstep, Wallace High School
1. Lucy Morton, Tilly; 2. Daniel Moore, Lancelot Du Bois; 3. Charlotte McCracken, Spud; 4. Erin Carson, Kilgarry Breezer; 5. Hannah Woolsley, Hillside Figaro; 6. Victoria Boville, Bobby
1. Down High Flyers (Charlotte Leslie, Seymours Pride, Charis Vinaccia, Derry Mac, Jessica Nelson, Duke, Alex Cleland, Rafa Smash)
2. Wallace High School (Kerry Magill, Lisnahall Miss Toffee, Sarah Moore, Scoobie, Connie Crothers, Stella, Sarah Moore, Cleagh Lady)
3. Royal School Armagh Hawks (Chloe McBride, Connor, Kathryn Morton, Whiskey, Victoria Lee, Duffy, Chloe McBride, Tynan Expresso)
4. Ballymena Academy Red (Taylor Hunter, Magic Rhythm, Charlotte Wylie, Perhaps B, Courtney Hamilton, Buddy, Ellen Harkness, Galloon Keano)
5. Glenlola Collegiate Divas (Cerys Howell, Leo, Phoebe Beaumont, Edie, Zara Woods, McCormick, Cerys Howell, Mr Murphy)
6. Ballymena Academy Navy (Alex Byrne, Millbrae Abbie, Tori Surgenor, Rocket Lady, William Hamilton, Rakish Talisman, Alex Byrne, Forest Lodge Rambler)
Tack & Turn Out Winner - Our Lady’s Grammar (Laoise O’Farrell, Cheryl Cole, Grace Kehoe, High Hopes, Meadbh McIlduff, Dalsown Done & Dusted, Niamh Morgan, Millbarr Phoenix)
1. Ballymena Academy Navy; 2. Down High Flyers; 3. Glenlola Collegiate Divas; 4. Belfast Royal Academy (Olivia Quinn, Beatie, Jessica Davidson, MHS Nadal, Rocco Quinn, Pixie, Olivia Quinn, Teddy); 5. Royal School Armagh Hawks; 6. Ballymena Academy Red
1. Rory Osbourne, Bella Bambino, St Patricks; 2. Cerys Howell, Murphy, Glenlola Collegiate; 3. Victoria Lee, Duffy, RSA; 4. Cerys Howell, Lulu, Glenlola Collegiate; 5. Emily Hawe, Crannard King of Hearts, Bloomfield Collegiate; 6. Sophie Hanna, Orea Patches, Lismore Comprehensive
Tack & turn Out Winner - Julie Lee Radcliffe, A Dream Come True, Carrickfergus College
1. Josh Mark, Calinvella; 2. Rory Osbourne, Bella Bambino; 3. Cerys Howell, Lulu; 4. Ellen Ward, Phoenix Delight; 5. Laura Gordon, Jake; 6. Cerys Howell, Mr Murphy
1. Kathryn Morton, Dominic, Royal School Armagh; 2. Abby Morton, Yogi, Royal School Armagh; 3. Lucy Morton, Bert, Killicomaine; 4. Ben Rowlatt McCormick, Mon Ami Alme, Friends School Lisburn; 5. Mya McDowell, Imps Girl, Newbridge Integrated College; 6. Meabh McIlduff, Dalsown Done and Dusted, Our Lady’s Grammar
1. Lucy Morton, Bert, Killicomaine; 2. Jessica Nelson, Duke, Down High; 3. Kathryn Morton, Dominic, Royal School Armagh 4. Meabh McIlduff, Dalsown Done and Dusted, Our Lady’s Grammar; 5. Ben Rowlatt McCormick, MJI Cabernet, Friends School Lisburn; 6. Josh Mark, Callinvella, Cambridge House