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American Connemara Pony Society at the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games
by Susan McConnell, Chair for the WEG Committee
WEG: The Alltech Experience and Impact
Until 3 years ago, Alltech was a name few people in the horse world knew, even though Alltech owns several brands of horse feed and supplements. Now, thanks to the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games (September 25 – October 10, 2010) in Lexington, Kentucky, the company has received brand recognition. CEO and founder Dr. Pearce Lyons has already signed a memo of understanding to be the title sponsor of the 2014 World Equestrian Games in Normandy, France.
WEG: By the numbers
The Chronicle of the Horse (November 5, 2010 issue) reported that there were 752 horses and 632 athletes from 58 countries who attended the 16 days of competition at WEG, 507,022 spectators, 62,707 school children and 6,000 volunteers. There were 81 medals awarded in 8 World Championships (reining, driving, dressage, eventing, show jumping, endurance, para-dressage and vaulting). NBC showed 8 hours of TV coverage over three weekends, while Universal Sports Network showed 15 hours live. The WEG’s website coverage received another 1.5 million views. The Kentucky government spent $102 million on improvements to the 1,200 acre Kentucky Horse Park. Alltech spent $10 million for the title sponsorship and another $22 million to ensure financial success. The pre-estimated economic impact of the WEG was $167 million.
These are unprecedented numbers for US horse sports.
In addition to the stadiums for the 8 World Championships, the WEG organizers set aside a large area next to the International Museum of the Horse and the Horse Park’s Visitors Center called the Equine Village and Village Arena (180’ x 200’). Spilling out into the training track and infield were individual tents for breed organizations, sporting organizations, and clinicians from all over the world. Daily, thousands of people were milling about visiting the tents and attending the continuous, free demonstrations, clinics and performances (10:00AM – 6:30PM).
The American Connemara Pony Society was in booth #30 of the Equine Village – ideally located beside the Horse Park Visitor’s Center, and booths for world renown, Irish vet, Brendan Furlong, DVM, the United States Pony Club, Goresbridge Horse Sales (Ire) and the Irish Draught Horse Society (NA).
WEG: Connemara Performers
Over the two weeks of WEG, the ACPS had 14 purebred Connemara ponies giving daily demonstrations in dressage, eventing and driving. There were stallions, geldings and mares – buckskins, greys and bays – ridden by Junior and Senior riders. The ACPS showcased the Connemara Pony as a useful, multi discipline, working pony, plus a pony that can learn “tricks” or jump a picnic table with silverware, plates and glassware! Melanie Trimper of MMT Communications (Pennsylvania) organized green jackets, navy blue and green monogrammed polo shirts, matching saddle pads and ear veils for the demonstrations. The ACPS provided these keeper items for all the riders and drivers. Many thanks to the following Connemara Pony owners and riders/drivers for bringing their ponies from “near and far”:
*Aille Coretca (Massachusetts) Lee Gregory and rider, Kate Alderfer
Conneleigh Raney McMor (Vermont), owner Ted Saggese and rider, Cailin Saggese Grey Haven Padraig MacDaire (Ohio), owner Stephanie Burk and groom, Keith C. Lewis Greystone’s Adirondack A’Herne (New York), owner Cindy Fletcher
Killian (Vermont) owner, Michele Sturm and rider, Michaela Whitty
Loughlin’s Journey (Ohio), owner Martha Slamer and groom, Sarah Slamer
*Patty’s Look At Me (Virginia) owner, Marian McEvilly and groom, Sarah McCrea Ridgetop Windy City (Virginia), owner Karen McIntyre Welch and groom, Christopher Welch Shadey Hill’s Oscea (Kentucky) Debbie Shade and rider, Sarah Kleintop
Stonybrook Belmont (California), owner Lee Webster and helper, Joan Webster
Rosemont’s Irish Abbey (Kentucky) owner, Fonda Eigel and groom, Meg Dumaine
Tricreek Greystone Riley (New York), owner Mary Lou Thall and rider, Kim Grescheck Wildwych Eclipse (California) owner, Lisa Martin and Max Gerdes and rider, Danielle Casalett Windy Hollow Lilia (Kentucky), owner Amy Plavin and rider, Katherine Short
WEG: Demonstrations in the Village Arena
Ireland is blessed with two native equines – horse size and pony size! The Irish Draught is the native Irish horse, and the Connemara Pony is a native Irish pony, named for the West of Ireland where it originated. At WEG, some of the Connemara Pony demonstration times were shared with Irish Draught horses. The demonstrations were ably narrated and commentated by an Irish Draught enthusiast, Fleur Bryan (Kentucky). Using her cheerful Irish accent, Fleur creatively engaged the crowd with relay races between the Irish Draughts and the Connemara Ponies! Lee Webster, Katherine Short, Karen Welch and Chris Knox wrote and rewrote the script for the demonstrations so each pony was included. Chris Knox (Idaho) helped “pass the baton” as the ponies out jumped and out paced the horses – usually! The driving demonstrations showed the horses and ponies beautifully presented, driving between cones and doing pirouettes. There were musical freestyle dressage demonstrations as well as Caprilli, grid jumping and show jumping over higher fences. The crowd cheered loudly and loved every minute, every day! Thanks to Katherine Short, all the ponies and people were well organized in the barn. During the demonstrations, there were volunteers (19 cheerful volunteers over 16 days) going through the stands delivering brochures from the Connemara Pony Breeders’ Society (Ireland) plus a promotional, information booklet created by Janice Meyer (Ohio) and Amy Plavin (Vermont) which included paid advertisements and the ACPS Breeders Directory. Fonda Eigel (Kentucky) was “the boots on the ground for the ACPS”.
WEG: Distinguished Visitors
Everyday brought new faces, pony stories, plus national and international dignitaries to the ACPS Booth in the Equine Village. Janice Meyer wisely created a three ring notebook “Guest Book” for people to sign with their name and address or requests for further information. Now, the public relations and promotion committee can communicate with these people. From the web, Janice ordered emerald green plastic wrist bands with the inscription “I (heart) Connemaras” and the web site www.acps.org. It has been a tradition to collect “pins” from countries, breeds, clinicians and disciplines. The ACPS green wrist bands were a huge hit to the visiting public. The wrist bands were light weight, easy to wear and carry, eye catching and “different”. Pat Parelli had wrist bands for the first time, this year, so we were on the cutting edge!
The Irish Ambassador, living in Washington DC, His Excellency, Ambassador Michael Collins and his wife, Marie visited our booth. The day they visited was perfect timing so they could meet and chat with the Connemara Pony Breeders’ Society, Clifden, Ireland, Chair, Dermot Power, and his wife, Carmel. The two couples had never met but instantly had friends in common. Ambassador Collins chose two ACPS Foundation ties and Mrs. Collins was given a scarf.
Jane Beshear, wife of the Governor of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, Steve Beshear, visited our booth the next day. She was given a scarf, too, and chose a tie for her husband, the Governor. As some people may know, Jane Beshear was the successful rider of Mary Beth Fleming’s gelding, Shammer Sandman, in many eventing competitions.
Niamh Philbin, Secretary for the Connemara Pony Breeders’ Society, Clifden, Ireland, flew over to volunteer her help in the booth. The ACPS appreciated her extra hands. Undoubtedly, Niamh has some pleasant memories and stories to share!
Heather Dean Wright of the Ard Stud in Co. Westmeath, Ireland and the seller of the capable eventing stallion, *ArdCeltic Art, to Donna Miller, came to our demonstrations.
Dan James, of “Double Dan” fame began his trick riding career at Sue Clarke’s, Glenormiston Farm in Australia. While growing up at Sue’s, Dan broke her stallion, *Castle Baron (aka “Henry”), to do theatrical tricks on command.
And, Irishman Dr. Pearce Lyons and his wife, Deirdre, were given a tie and scarf from the ACPS.
So many visitors had happy, positive stories to share! The Connemara Pony was known to many Americans, Canadians, and Europeans. It was great to see old friends and make new friends.
WEG: Keep the momentum going
The question now – for US riders, leaders of national organizations and breed affiliates – is what will these numbers mean in the future? It may take many years to know if the increased exposure brings more people as fans, competitors, owners or breeders. It appears that the visibility and overall popularity of horse sports have changed as a result of the Games.
There is nothing like the World Equestrian Games! The Olympics pale compared to these Games. Unlike the Olympics, at the WEG, there are no other sports. The horse is the focus at the World Equestrian Games. The horse brought all those people together. Everyone wanted to see, learn, or talk about “The Horse” – all breeds, all disciplines.
Somewhere back in the caveman days, someone got on the back of a horse. And, the human and the horse have been partners ever since. Depending on its conformation, temperament and athletic ability, the horse has learned to jump (show jumping), pull (driving), slide (reining), go long distances (endurance), move gracefully (vaulting, dressage and para-dressage) or combine most of these attributes (eventing). At the World Equestrian Games, the “Best of the Best”, from all over the world, compete and remind us what a special animal “The Horse” really is. Mark your calendar for 2014 World Equestrian Games in Normandy, France. Don’t miss the next World Equestrian Games. The Connemara Pony should be part of the breed demonstrations showing the world that this pony breed “Can Do It All”.
As overall Chair for the ACPS at WEG, I want to express my gratitude to the people “behind the scenes”. It was my honor to work with so many wonderful people who made the American Connemara Pony Society’s experience at the World Equestrian Games so successful. Generous financial support and colorful brochures from the Connemara Pony Breeders’ Society, Clifden, Ireland were greatly appreciated. Numerous donors gave to the “Ride to the WEG”, the brainchild of Joanie Webster (California) and Sally Oxnard (New Hampshire) relying on the generous help of Christie Kelly (California). Donors, benefactors, and exceptional volunteers combined to make the exposure and publicity of the Connemara Pony possible. The booth and demonstrations were informative and well organized. A huge amount of credit should go to the Connemara Pony owners and riders/drivers who made the commitment to follow all the veterinary directives (starting 9 months in advance) and Homeland Security rules; ship long distances; work with people and ponies they had never met; and, then, give entertaining demonstrations! They were great!
And, last but not least, thanks to Irishman, Dr. Pearce Lyons and his company, Alltech, for providing this unique opportunity. Without his vision and commitment, none of this would have happened in Lexington, KY.
***CPBSA PERFORMANCE REGISTER 2010/2011***
The final date to accrue points for the first year of the newly established CPBSA Performance Register is 30 June 2011. It is anticipated that the state division winners and overall national Australian Connemara Performance Pony for 2010/11 will be announced in August.
Winners of the ‘In hand’ and ‘Performance’ sections will be awarded a good quality, embroidered woollen rug, and promoted in a major national horse publication.
There has been a good response to the Performance Register with nearly 70 ponies entered.
Ponies that have had scores submitted and have accrued greater than 100 points so far are:
- Celtic Fairytale – (Celtic Winter’s Tale x Ballantrae Treacle)
- Glenormiston Ballymalloe – (Castle Baron x Glenormiston Ballycara)
- Glenormiston Killian – (Castle Baron x Glenormiston Ballycara)
- Springfield Kylemore – (Ben Dhui Diccon x Celtic Summer Mist)
- Wychwood Happy Songbird – (Wychwood Willy Wagtail x Lagoonside Divinity)
The CPBSA looks forward to receiving final scores and announcing the state winners and national Australian Connemara Performance Pony for 2010/11.
Pony Profile : Kemill Hill Tinka
A party of note to Connemara lovers in Western Australia took place recently at Helen Colleran’s when the mare Kemill Hill Tinka celebrated her 29th birthday with a special cake and group of admirers.
Born of imported parents at the Kemill Hill Stud, Tinka was very much the traditional Connie pony type, bomb proof and very much the family pony with bone and substance. The major part of her first eighteen years was spent as the back bone, school master of the Kemill Hill Riding School. Her near perfect response to voice control made her the ideal beginner pony. She was trained to work on the lunge from spelling, this was achieved by emphasis being placed on the last letter so that STOP resulted in her cue to halt, WALK the K was the cue and TROT the T became the cue. A simple gimmick but it resulted in apprehensive young riders becoming so fascinated by this pony that could spell they forgot their nervousness and relaxed. The first essential in learning to ride.
Such was Tinka’s bomb proof temperament and willingness to serve that she also became a star in the Hill Group of Riding for Disabled. In 1981 the Rural & Industries Bank sponsored a competition across the state for the mount most suitable for Riding for Disabled work.
Qualifying competitions were held at major country shows and the final took place at the large Autumn show held in Claremont. Tinka was the state winner of this prestigious event.
With the sale of the riding school Tinka was passed on to Helen Colleran to use as a dam in her breeding program with her stallion Leroy Dwayne. This Dwayne – Tinka union was very successful, especially the female progeny many of which went on to be champions. Probably the most notable being Hill View Irish Mist being supreme champion at several Perth Royals, Connemara of the year, and judged many times to be a champion in both saddle and led classes. Others that left their mark in the outside show scene were Hill View Patrice and Hill View Kate, so Tinka, although restricted by the work load she has carried, has been denied the opportunity to shine in the show ring but proved most valuable by leaving her mark in the West Australian pony world and has provided a lot of pleasure to many.
NOVEMBER NEWS FROM DOWN UNDER
A quote from the Australian Anzac ode goes age shall not weary them nor the years condemn and from the news this month from Australia, this could apply to the Connemara Pony. Read on!
The “Jo Heard” Memorial trophy for 2009 was given to one of Joe’s home bred ponies – Ballantrae Turkish Delight. The story of the acquisition of and the working with this pony by its present owner is delightful. The trophy is decided on the Connemara Pony that is “out doing”. Not necessarily winning ribbons but out doing whatever it is that shows the Connemara pony is capable of doing better than most other ponies! A broad spectrum, but one that Jo always bred her ponies to achieve.
Turkish Delight, or “Star” as he is known at home, was first noticed at a Horse Sale on the River Murray in March 2004 by Nicole Salisbury. Catalogued as “black gelding, white star, done stock work, good jumper, suite pony club, nice type, 11yr, and 14.2hh”, Star took the eye and was purchased by Nicole’s parents that “Pony Club type” would be correct. There was no indication as to breed, or type.
It soon became evident that the previous owner had been a bully and had belted Star frequently and consistently. He had a fear of everything! Some tender loving care soon had Star beginning to accept the new environment and he went to pony Club a few times, then in May 2004, he went to his first Pony Club Gymkhana. To the surprise of all, including his new owner, he came home with 3 reserve Champions, 5 firsts, 2 seconds, 3 thirds and a first in Jumping. All of this from a pony that was initially scared of everything from his previous treatment and had been in work with the Salisbury family for just 2 months. TLC really worked.
Some little time later Nicole and her mother went riding in the bush – and got well and truly lost. The Australian bush can be very tricky in many areas if you are not “Bush orientated”. Good common sense saw Star given his head and he turned, took a course that he knew was to home although it went down steep hills, huge rocks protruding etc. but he knew and soon familiar sights were noticed and home became evident.
At one show he was taken to a person stated that he was a New Forest Pony and should be registered as such. Shortly after this event the Secretary of the CPBSA, Vicki Plummer was in touch with the Salisbury family to say that she believed that Star was in fact a Connemara Pony. Records were checked, previous recorded owners contacted and finally Star was found to be Ballantrae Turkish Delight. Great joy for Nicole as she now knew what a gem she had been riding and could now see the reasons for the qualities in her new pony! She owned a Connemara.
Nicole cannot name all that Star has done and won with her as rider. Suffice to say that mum has made five rugs of the ribbons that have been won at varying disciplines. Star now trusts Nicole with everything; he has got over the fear etc. Those who saw him in the early days cannot believe the difference in the Pony and the brilliance that he is showing with the questions “is this the same pony that you had previously?”
In Nicole’s words: “Star has truly helped me find my favourite breed of horse. I will always know that you cannot beat a Connemara”. Star is now 15 years of age and he is really just now finding his rhythm.
To continue with the theme “Age shall not weary them” come the story of Binnowie Mandolin from Sally Weiss. After purchasing Mandolin, an out of work 12 year old with limited education and no training in dressage just over 12 months ago he has had a huge change of pace. He is successfully competing in Pony Club Dressage, consistently scoring top in preliminary and has placed 5TH AT State Championships. He has had numerous top placings at EFA Pony Dressage at 2** level. Mandolin is not limited to Dressage having been placed 2nd at EFA Jnr. Preliminary ODE events, 80cm Pony Club Combined training to State level and 90cm Interschool Show Jumping.
Mandolin being a Connemara, would do anything for food, hence teaching him to bow for presentations was really quite simple – once a carrot was introduced. Sally’s own words say it all: “Binnowie Mandolin has been our introduction to Connemara Ponies and this has been an absolute delight!”
What those with Connemara ponies already know – The Connemara pony is always an absolute delight and they do really just keep on keeping on!
News from South Australia again centres on the “Mature” Connemara.
Mayo Mary has been show jumping for a number of years but indicated that enough was enough. Yet, she still wanted to “do things” so her owner/rider entered her, at the age of 14 years, in her first ODE. I actually saw this event and was surprised to see Mary on course. She performed extremely well on an uphill, twisting course that ran through a steep dry creek bed with several fences set precariously on the brink of the uphill cut of the creek bed. At one fence that was built on a curve Mary decided that she did not have enough room and had a stop. The only one for the course and that fault was that of the rider. The combination at its first event finished midfield but the Connemara was noticed and recognised for all of those traits that we know the Connemara to have.
Yet another mature Connemara Newlands Winsome (Newlands Gideon x Wychwood Fairy Wren) is showing the true Connemara Colours. Newlands Winsome is owned by a mature aged lady and the combination attend “Riding club and potter around”. (Owner’s words)
At one meeting a ridden Dressage test to music was convened. Owner Helen decided that she and Winsome would have a go, “just for the hell of it!” First time ever at dressage! Music was chosen – This could be the last by John Farnham (perhaps appropriate at that time) and the tune had a firm 1-2 beat rhythm and so began the training. The event time came and perhaps it was the atmosphere – perhaps it was the music – perhaps the mare understood the feelings of her rider – whatever it was – Winsome powered on, picked up the beat with intelligence, worked to perfection and to the great excitement of all, Winsome and Helen won the event by a mile!
Once again those wonderful traits of the Connemara Pony came to the fore. Whilst Winsome is not considered “aged” in the true sense of the opening adage, the combination fits in as Helen said to me when talking about the event – “I fit in to your introduction, I have the age and it does weary me at times – but the mare took it in her stride and really excelled beyond belief”.
News from Hobart
Glenormiston Benbaun was awarded Champion Australian pony, reserve Saddle pony and Supreme Australian Pony at the Hobart Royal Agricultural Show 2009. Do not be mislead by the awards. In Australia, because of the lack of numbers at many shows, ponies are collectively entered in classes. For Instance the “Australian” pony could have Welsh, Connemara, Australian, New Forest, Shetland, Dartmoor etc. ponies entered in the one class called “Australian” Pony. Even greater the win varying breeds competing.
News from New South Wales
From NSW comes the news that Glenormiston Bartle was awarded the Supreme Champion ribbon at the Castle Hill show in March 2009. Glenormiston Stud yet again in the news!
– Finally a consignment of frozen semen from Spinway Comet is now available to owners and breeders of Connemara Ponies in Australia. In due course, this service will form part of the liaison between the Charles Sturt University and the CPBSA.
What a wonderful Pony the Connemara Pony is!!!
Not much material is available from the Connemara worldwide since the European Show Jumping Championships and the great results of the Irish team in Moorsele, Belgium. The CPBS certainly made the most of it with the appearance of individual Medallist Ballyowen Maybelle Molly and silver team member Sillogue Darkie being paraded at the historic Clifden showgrounds during the Connemara festival in late August. I have it on good authority that Molly has now been sold to a Belgian owner.
In trolling through overseas magazines it appears that the new Connemara Performance Hunter Classes have proved popular in England with Rachel Suffern topping the 5yr – 7 yr class with the Ashfield Festy bred ANNAGH STORM. Brenda Short also made a successful return to the ring to ride NEWTON BLOSSOM to first place in the National Ridden Connemara title.
At the NPS Summer Championships, Malvern Worcs. Sarah Dowdell’s Connemara, JOHN’S CUCKOO, ridden by Mathew Lawrence claimed the Mountain and Moorland Silver medal. A further Mountain and Moorland Pony show at Castlewellan, Northern Ireland saw 5year old County Down based ABBEY STORM take out the ridden mountain and moorland Championship. Storm was ridden by Sylvia Henry. This win added to the Pony’s success at Cavan Equestrian centre where he won the Northern Ireland Dressage Preliminary Championship.
– John Tennant
As the nights grow longer and darker the show and competition season in Sweden is coming to an end and we can look back at a busy and successful Connemara year at both breed specific and interbreed events.
On the last day of July, the Connemara ponies and riders competed for the coveted titles of Swedish Connemara Champion. After warm-up classes three championship classes were held. First out was the championship for riders over 18 and/or Connemaras over height. The gelding New Star (by Myrens Wilbur out of Nadin) has been competing successfully against horses and had no problems to take the championship title after also winning the warm-up class. Second to New Star was Busy Bailiff (out of Betty Blues). His sire Spinway Corona was exported to the US as a dressage horse, but has apparently passed on his talent for dressage.
Among the ponies 130 – 140 cm Olbiz Tellus (by V ̈arnbergs Orion out of Twilight) was second in the warm-up class, but stepped up a notch in the championship class to take the title. The runner up, the BEC Tic Tac (by Countach Campbell out of K ̈ohls Rapsodi), also did an impressive test although he couldn’t quite match Tellus.
Tellus’s half sister, Hagens Rosmara (out of Hagens Andora) came fresh from the Falsterbo show (see Swedish news from July) to win both warm-up class and Connemara champion title, but not without a good fight from the stallion Golden Garlic (by Juno Rory out of Ambrosia ) who with just a single point less was only a nose hair behind Rosmara. Garlic, however, later turned the tables on Rosmara and took home their ridden class with his full sister Ginger as runner up and Rosmara in fourth place. With the tripple Swedish dressage Champion (all breeds) Juno Rory as his sire Golden Garlic surely is another Connemara to have dressage in his blood.
Among the dressage ponies Backens Lotus (by Rolls Royce out of Princess Jasmin) has continued having a successful year and he is still the highest placed Connemara with a 5th place on the dressage top 100. Also on the top 100 are some of the names from the Connemara championships: Hagens Rosmara in place 19, Golden Garlic in place 43 and Olbiz Tellus in place 45. Also on the top 100 are Lotus II (by Rolls Royce out of Lorette V), Hagens Qumulus (by V ̈arnbergs Orion out of Hagens Fondora), K ̈ohls Fidolina (by Shirley’s Thunderbell out of Hagens Ellina) and Backuddens Hurricane Haze (by Dale Haze out of Tyfon). There are thus three ponies by V ̈arnbergs Orion among the top 100 dressage ponies.
The partbred Verdi (maternal grandsire Lofty Roderic) also continues to do very well. At Falsterbo International Horse Show he won the Grand Prix Ku ̈r and in the European Championships Verdi was seventh in the individual finals.
In eventing the two stallions Nice-n’-Curly (by Nice-n’-Easy out of Corinne II) and Grange Flynn Sparrow (by Ashfield Festy out of Grange Agnes Sparrow) continue to do well. Nice-n’-Curly is presently in 8th place on the eventing top 100. This vet- eran eventer participated in the European eventing championships in 2003 and 2004 winning a team bronze in 2004 and he has an individual gold from the 2004 Nordic eventing championships. At 17 years of age he is now ridden by the fifth of six brothers and sisters helping her win her debute in CNCP**.
At this year’s European eventing championships the partbred Connemara Lillefot (by Frederiksminde Hazy Chance) was part of the Swedish team. The Swedish team finished fourth with Lillefot taking a creditable individual 9th after clear rounds in the show jumping and cross country phases. In the Swedish championships Lillefot was third and he is presently placed 3rd in the eventing top. Interesting Lillefot and Verdi not only share the Connemara blood, but Verdi’s grandmother is also the dam of Lillefot.
Three Swedish Connemara champions were crowned on the last day of the national show. The Irish-bred Duncan Cuckoo (by Smokey Duncan out of Heather Cuckoo) took the title for adults riders and overheight Connemaras. He has had a successful career but can no longer compete in pony classes as his rider has turned 19. Among the smaller ponies (130 – 140 cm) the winner was another Irish import, Caperann Silver Line (by Seafield Silver Dun out of Cold Winter). His rider Nickilee ̊Angman has had a successful year with her three Connemaras and also won the warm-up class on Caperann Shamone (by Kylemore Rocky out of Turlough Beauty).
The championship class for ponies 140 – 148 cm saw the single clear round from Brittney (by Ashfield Cathal Crobdhearg out of Hagens Grandezza) who subsequently took the Champion title. Second to her was one of the oldest ponies at the show, the 21-year old Amielle (out of Brantshammar Beckymoss 33-83-2567), one of the Elite stallion Finney Master’s daughters.
There has also been Swedish show jumping championships for ponies regardless of breed, both outdoors and indoors. Three Irish imports were in the ribbons in the outdoor championships. Some Man for One Man (by Ashfield Bobby Sparrow out of Misty Maiden) took sixth place among the ponies 140 – 148 cm, just ahead of Lexus Justice (by Westside Fred out of Dunamoney Lass) in seventh place.
Among the ponies 130 – 140 cm Sceilig Siofra (by Deise Sam Maguire out of Gentle Jessie) took the bronze medal. This successful little mare is presently fourth on the show jumping top 100 list. At the recent indoor championships Desdemona (by Brol ̈otens Joop out of Ti-Ti-Oo) took a creditable seventh place and Some Man for One Man was fifth among the larger ponies, but the Swedish champion title went to the French-bred Ix de l’Aulne.
A lot of Connemaras figure on the show jumping top 100. Apart from Sceilig Siofra names like Lexus Justice, Ix de l’Aulne, Desdemona, Some Man for One Man, Clew Bay Thunder (by Thunderball out of Racecourse View) and Poetic Annie (by Poetic Justice out of Myrens Anitra) have all had a successful season.
Thethree-year-oldtestscontinuedafterthesummerandatNossebroFidelie(byO ̈xenholm Bobby out of Eriksbyns Colette) was given a double award for both gaits and jumping. The offspring of Coosheen Finbarr (by Glencarrig Prince out of Scarteen Mistral) have continued to do well and no less than four of his progeny have achieved awards this year. Two for jumping, two for gaits. At the national finals at Falkenberg it was instead another three-year-old who shone. Erinmore Golden Marble (out of Glaskopf Grey Joanna) is the lastsonofO ̈xenholmMarbleJr,andatthethree-year-oldgaitsfinalsheprovedtobethe most talented pony of all participants winning against gait talents of all other breeds.
The national finals for the four-year-olds saw another strong Connemara victory in Kenzo II (out of Enya). Kenzo is yet another talented show jumper by Poetic Justice and further proved that this spring’s Elite premium was not wasted on just anybody. From the four- year-old Connemaras participating in the local quality tests this autumn Poetic Justice had three progeny with awards (all in jumping) and Hagens O’Chief and Coosheen Finbarr had two each. Vanessa Broderick (by Coosheen Finbar out of Nelly Broderick) achieved both a gaits and a jumping award being a multi talent.
Also five- and six-year-olds have their national finals at Falkenberg during the same busy weekend. At these ages the ponies compete in real dressage tests and show jumping across a course, though the show jumping is judged based on the ponies’ attitude and talent for jumping rather than the normal counting of poles down and speed. In the dressage for five-year-olds five Connemaras came forward and among the ponies 140 – 148 cm the gelding Gr ̈ans Tabasco (out of Gr ̈ans Tussilago), a son of the eventing Grange Flynn Sparrow mentioned above, took a creditable fifth place.
Among the six-year-olds, the stallion Starrhult Bossanova (out of Hagens Paloma) showed that he had inherited the dressage gene from his sire Spinway Corona and won one of the classes finishing third overall. In total eleven Connemaras took part in the finals for five- and six-year-olds and did a great job promoting the breed. A mention should also be made of the partbred Jamalia who won the show jumping for the five-year-olds. Her maternal grandsire is the Connemara Gryt ̊asa Kallemero.
Many Connemaras have also visited the show rings and there has been two regional Connemara shows in addition to the national show. At the regional show in H ̈ol ̈o the stallion Brol ̈otens Joop (by Finney Master out of Dame Grainne) took the championship with the nine-year-old mare Hagens Bella (by Hagens O’Chief out of Hagens Xquisite) standing supreme.
The second regional show was held at Bj ̈orb ̈ack. Here the German import Glaskopf Grey Jacquelin (by Imp ́erator M ́elody out of Glaskopf Grey Joan) was youngstock champion with Junette II (by Coosheen Finbarr out of Juliette IV) as reserve youngstock champion.
Overall champion was Erinmore Golden Marble who later did so well at the young pony finals and reserve overall champion was his niece Junessa (by Janus out of Bellobina).
At the national show more than 70 ponies came forward in the in hand classes. Of these 16 were awarded a gold and the stallion Hagens O’Chief (by Blue Chief out of Ashfield Fancy) was very successful as a sire with four of his progeny being gold awarded and he himself winning a gold in the progeny class. Janus (by O ̈xenholm Marble Jr out of Brantshammar Julie) had sired three gold ponies and Frederiksminde Hazy Chance (by Hazy Dawn out of Frederiksminde Christina) two.
Lidens Mr Li (by Janus out of May-Li) won the gelding championship to his half brother O ̈strahults Benz (out of O ̈strahults Sonette). The youngstock championship went to L ̊angarn ̈o Decibel (by Dexter Leam Pondi out of Innellan Alice) with Holmtebo Urchin (by Hagens D’Arcy out of Hagens Ultra) standing reserve. Supreme champion was Urchin’s sire Hagens D’Arcy (by Hagens O’Chief out of Hagens Morning) with Hagens Rosmara (by V ̈arnbergs Orion out of Hagens Andora), the winner of the Connemara dressage championship, standing reserve to him.
As the supreme champion of the national show Hagens D’Arcy later represented the Connemara breed to compete for the title Pony of the Year. This event took place at Falkenberg at the same time as the young pony finals and in strong competition with the supreme champions of the other breeds D’Arcy took the Pony of the Year title.
Danish team eventing championship
Kaas was on the winning team. The pair has been very successful having won two classes at national level this year.
Nordic-Baltic Championship in showjumping
The Nordic-Baltic Championship in showjumping was held in Denmark in June. The connemaras were very successful taking the individual gold and silver medals! The winner was Lavalley Prince (by Coosheen Callowfeenish Cashel out of Doe Dolly) ridden by Tine Høgsaas Dalen from Norway. Silver went to Some Man for One Man (by Ashfield Bobby Sparrow out of Misty Maiden) ridden by Alma Björklund from Sweden. Both ponies are bred in Ireland.
Cecilie Strøm Springer –www.springerconnemara.dk
Other successful jumping ponies 2009
A dream come true at Roundstone
McGrath family celebrate
The All Ireland Champion of Champions Connemara Pony show at Roundstone provided the McGrath family from Hazelrock House, Claregalway, with a memorable day as Kieran McGrath’s two-year-old colt Glencarrig Romeo (Bunowen Bobby-Fairyhill Helen) won the Junior championship and the Murty McGrath memorial cup given by the family to Roundstone in memory of their father.
The show was honoured by a visit from Deputy Enda Kenny T.D. Leader of Fine Gael who presented the cup. The reserve junior championship remained in Roundstone with Caillin Conneely’s Letterdyfe Rachel Rose (Frederiksminde Hazy Match-Letterdyfe Rose). Judged supreme champion foal was Monaghanstown Shannon (Linsfort Barney-Monaghanstown Sheeba) owned by Pat & Mary Rabbitt from Monaghanstown Stud, in Westmeath. Caoranbeg Champ owned by Peter O’Malley from Carraroe was reserve champion foal.
The good wine was kept till last, with a perfect end to a perfect day, when judges Jane Darragh wife of the late Paul Darragh and Michael Western from Grey Abbey, Belfast, awarded Glencarrig Romeo Supreme All Ireland Champion of champions ahead of Dooneen Alice (Frederiksminde Hazy Match-Jennifer Rose) owned and bred by Peter Molloy from Claddaghduff in reserve.
Chairman Paddy McDonagh and his committee deserve great credit for the overall presentation and attention to detail that surrounds this show. On Sunday the founders of 1923 would have been proud as Deputy Kenny in his opening speech complimented all the good work done over the years by so many breeders and their true dedication over the years towards the preservation of Irelands native Connemara Pony, perhaps few more so than Murty McGrath from Cregmore, on Sunday his sons did him proud.
Roundstone All Ireland Champion of Champions 13. Sept. 2009
Yearling colt: 1. Peter Molloy’s Dooneen Hazy Rebel, by Frederiksminde Hazy Match- Jennifer Rose; 2. Sean Bourke’s Rathlacken Richard, by Seoigeach-Katie the Kid; 3. Kieran McGrath’s Hazelrock Horizon, by Bunowen Bobby-Smokey Jimmy
Yearling filly: 1. Caillin Conneely’s Letterdyfe Rachel Rose, by Frederiksminde Hazy Match- Letterdyfe Rose; 2. Martin Nee’s Doonreagha Chris, by Clooneille Cashel –Doonreagha Star; 3. Gerry King’s Ballafadda Lady, by Linsfort Barney-Cashel Bay Heather
Two year-old filly: 1. Damien Gorham’s Doonhill Queen, by Currachmore Cashel-Connemara Lady; 2. Sinead Lusby-McGrath’s Lucky Molly, by Smokey Idea-Lucky Mavourneen; 3. Cathy Stuffle’s Aoifes Pride, by Glendine Kestrel-Jasmine
Three year-old filly: 1. Peter Molloy’s Dooneen Stephanie Rose, by Laerkens Cascade Dawn- Jennifer Rose; 2. Pat O’Neill’s Illaunurra Heather, by Silver Shadow-Illaunurra Mist; 3. Gearoid Curran’s Glencarrig Rose, by Coosheen Storm Boy-April Rose
Two &Three year-old colts: 1. Kieran McGrath’s Glencarrig Romeo, by Bunowen Bobby- Fairyhill Helen; 2, Sean Conneely’s John’s Pride, by Rathcoona Cove-Ros Eo; 3, Bartley Conroy’s Callowfeenish Grey, by Monaghanstown Pat-Callowfeenish Mist
Junior champion: Glencarrig Romeo Reserve: Letterdyfe Rachel Rose
Filly foal: 1. Pat & Mary Rabbitt’s Monaghanstown Shannon, by Linsfort Barney- Monaghanstown Sheeba; 2. Sean Cooney’s Loughmore Katy, by Kingstown Boy-Corrib Misty; 3. Cathal Mullen’s Gurteen Independent, by Linsfort Barney-Independent.
Colt foal: 1. Peter O’Malley’s Caoranbeg Champ, by Moorland Snowy River-Ballowstown Bibi; 2. Myles Feeney’s by Fernville Danny-Tullykyne Princess; 3. Martin Nee’s Doonreagh Marty, by Coolillaun Cushlawn-Doonreagh Star
Champion foal: Monaghanstown Shannon Reserve: Caoranbeg Champ
Stallions: 1. Eamon Burke’s Clooneile Cashel, by Cloonisle Cashel-Tolka Bridge; 2. Robbie & Barbara Fallon’s Cashelbay Cruise, by I Love you Melody-Coosheen Pheasant; 3. Sid Whorley’s Ballinavilla Prince, by Mervyn Pookhaun-Doon Fairy
Four to six year-old mare with or without foal: 1, Peter Molloy’s Dooneen Alice, by Frederiksminde Hazy Match-Jennifer Rose; 2. P.J.Burke’s Glencarrig Maud, by Castlestrange Fionn-Coosheen Breeze; 3. Roger & Laura Brady’s Vinnura Lola, by Drymills Bridgeboy- Cloonboy Lady
Seven to twelve year-old mare with or without foal: 1. Noel Brett’s Foreglos Lass, by Wings of Victory-Foreglos Matchmaker; 2. Bernard Keaney’s Murvey Cara, by Boden Park Finnard- Cashel Cherry; 3. Michael Naughton’s Glencarrig Roisin, by Castlestrange Fionn-April Rose
Mare thirteen year-old and over with or without foal: 1. Frances & Deirdre O’Reilly’s Glenmore Kelly’s Owen, by Abbeyleix Owen-Gentian Gold; 2. Jane Andrew’s Coral Mistys Jane, by Cloonisle Cashel-Coral Misty; 3. Grace Maxwell Murphy’s Lakeside Lady, by Abbeyleix Dolphin-Kits Bay
Gelding class: 1. Grace Maxwell Murphy’s Smokey Biscuit, by Glencarrig Prince-Smokey Star (one entry)
Bay Mare class: 1. Seamus Keady’s Gleann Rua Godiva, by Westside Mirah-Moonlight; 2. Patrick Conneely’s Moyvoon Breeze, by Streamstown Larry-Moyvoon Lady 3. Pat O’Neill’s Illaunurra Mist, by Corncullen Silver Belle-Village Mist
All Ireland Supreme Champion of Champions: Glencarrig Romeo Reserve: Dooneen Alice
Ruth Rogers 14/9/09