Can you name a sport where Ireland has eight athletes inside the world’s top 50?

  • 8 December 2016, 11:06

While Ireland has some outstanding individual athletes in many international sports such as Golf, Boxing, MMA and Rowing, it is in the equestrian discipline of Show Jumping where Ireland in particular continues to shine on the world stage on a weekly basis.

The latest Longines Show Jumping rankings released this week by the sports governing body, the FEI, shows that Ireland, with eight, now has more riders inside the world’s top 50 than any other nation around the globe.

Traditional superpowers Germany and USA come in behind Ireland with six riders apiece in the world top 50. The Longines rankings, which are based on a 12 month period, include more than 3,000 Show Jumping athletes from all corners of the globe.

The staggering scale of Ireland’s international equestrian participation is highlighted further when you consider that so far in 2016, Horse Sport Ireland had over of 500 riders competing in more than 400 different international shows and events across 32 countries worldwide.

Bertram Allen and Molly Malone on their way to victory in the Stockholm Grand Prix (Photo: Roland Thunholm/SIHS)

Bertram Allen and Molly Malone on their way to victory in the Stockholm Grand Prix (Photo: Roland Thunholm/SIHS)

Wexford’s Bertram Allen continues to be Ireland’s top ranked rider at No.21 and with an excellent runner-up finish already under his belt at the start of December in the €360,000 Longings Masters of Paris, 21 year old Allen could be in line to climb the rankings further in January. Recently Bertram Allen incredibly won three new cars on one weekend alone in Sweden, bringing to nine the number of new cars won in his extraordinary career to date.

Tipperary’s Denis Lynch is next best in 27th place, while Offaly’s Darragh Kenny has moved up two places to 35th, one place ahead of Co Down’s Conor Swail in 36th. Cian O’Connor has moved up two places to 38th, while strong results from Cork’s Shane Sweetnam and Kilkenny’s Richie Moloney saw the pair move into the top 50 this month. Sweetnam rises 10 places to 41st, three places ahead of Cork’s Billy Twomey who moves up four places to 44th, while Moloney has climbed eight places to 50.

Having made a huge jump of 56 places in the month of October, Derry’s Daniel Coyle has consolidated his position inside the top 100 holding 84th place. Germany’s Christian Ahlmann retains the No.1 position with Simon Delestre (FRA) second and Daniel Deusser (GER) third.

Judy Reynolds and Vancouver K

Judy Reynolds and Vancouver K

Meanwhile in Dressage, Kildare’s Judy Reynolds and Vancouver K are in 21st place on the latest rankings where Germany’s Isabell Werth holds onto top spot. Tipperary’s Padraig McCarthy is Ireland’s top-ranked Eventing rider in 37th place, with Galway’s Cathal Daniels next best in 41st. Germany’s Michael Jung continues his relentless reign at the top of the Eventing standings.

The latest rankings for Show Jumping, Dressage and Eventing are available to view HERE

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