Brilliant Irish Eventing team move into Silver Medal position at World Equestrian Games – Meath’s Sarah Ennis in Bronze individually

  • 15 September 2018, 22:47

The Irish Eventing team today (Saturday) produced an outstanding Cross Country performance at the FEI World Equestrian Games, to climb five places on the leaderboard and into Silver Medal position heading into the final phase of  competition.

Sally Corscadden’s Irish team of Cathal Daniels, Sam Watson, Padraig McCarthy and Sarah Ennis had been in seventh place after Dressage on Friday, but within touching distance of the medal places on a tight leaderboard.

Cathal Daniels and Rioghan Rua (ISH) Photo: Erin Gilmore)

Saturday’s Cross Country saw Carlow’s Sam Watson get Ireland off to a perfect start when posting a clear with Horseware Ardagh Highlight (ISH). Galway’s Cathal Daniels, who is the youngest competitor in the competition at just 22, also jumped clear with Rioghan Rua (ISH), adding just 3.6 time penalties. Ireland’s third rider, Tipperary’s Padraig McCarthy added another clear with Mr Chunky and at that stage Ireland were in Bronze Medal position. Ireland’s final combination, Sarah Ennis with Horseware Stellor Rebound (ISH), matched their team-mates perfect performance, and their clear round moved Ireland ahead of France and into second.

Sarah Ennis who lies in Bronze Medal position individually after Cross Country

Britain hold the lead on 80.8, with Ireland second on 89.0 and France in third on 91.8. Japan sit just outside the medal places on 100.9 and in fourth place of the 15 teams taking part.

Meath’s Sarah Ennis is also sitting in Bronze medal position in the individual competition on a score of 26.3. She is less than one fence behind German leader Ingrid Klimke (23.3), while Britain’s Rosalind Canter is in second on 24.6. Padriag McCarthy is also in contention and lies in seventh place on a score of 27.2. Sam Watson is in 25th (35.5) with Cathal Daniels in 28th (37.6) while Irish individual rider Patricia Ryan is in 64th with Dunrath Eclipse (ISH).

The final Show Jumping phase of the Eventing competition at the North Carolina venue was due to take place on Sunday, but has been rescheduled to Monday due to Tropical Storm Florence.

Meanwhile, there was disappointing news this evening for Irish Dressage rider Judy Reynolds, when it was announced that the Freestyle to Music final has been cancelled. On Friday, Reynolds had become the first Irish rider in history to book a place in a Freestyle final at a World Equestrian Games, after an impressive performance in the Grand Prix Special with her horse Vancouver K.

A statement issued by the FEI said, that despite the best efforts of the whole Tryon 2018 team and the Officials, who had been working on plans for rescheduling since yesterday evening, including meetings with the Chefs de Mission and Chefs d’Equipe, the logistics of putting all necessary elements into place in time have proved insurmountable. As a result, and very regrettably, the Dressage Freestyle was be cancelled.

“This was not an easy decision, but we have explored every option, including trying to reschedule the horse departures, and even looking at moving the competition into the indoor with a change of footing, but the logistics of making all this happen are just not possible,”  Tryon 2018 Organising Committee President Michael Stone said.

“We know this is desperately disappointing for the 15 athletes who had qualified their horses for the Freestyle, and of course for all the spectators who had bought tickets, but the weather has simply left us with no choice. Horse welfare has to be the top priority and flying the horses out on the same day as competition doesn’t work, so sadly the decision to cancel the Freestyle had to be taken.”

Equiline – Official athlete clothing supplier of Team Ireland Equestrian

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