Horse Sport Ireland looks forward to Le Lion d’Angers 2022

  • 20 October 2022, 13:59

Earlier this month, The Irish Sport Horse Studbook was once again crowned the World Breeding Federation for Sport Horses (WBFSH) leading Eventing Studbook in the world for 2022. Since the WBFSH rankings were established in 1994, the Irish Sport Horse Studbook has won the coveted Eventing Studbook rankings for an incredible 24 of the last 29 years.
Fittingly, the eyes of the eventing world turn now to Le Lion d’Angers in France for the World Championships for Young Eventing horses where the next generation of young stars will take their place in the limelight.

This year, Horse Sport Ireland Chef d’Equipe Dag Albert has selected a squad of fifteen horses to represent Ireland, with the Irish Sport Horse making up fourteen of those. Of the 118 horses entered to compete in the 6-Year-Old and 7-Year-Old Championships, the Irish Sport Horse is represented by 36 horses competing for 12 countries making the ISH the most represented studbook at the 2022 staging of Le Lion’s World Championships for Young Eventing horses.

The Irish team consists of two debutant Championship riders in Jonathan Steele and Meabh Bolger, three Olympic riders in Sarah Ennis, Joseph Murphy, and Aoife Clarke, with the rest of the squad comprising of riders who’ve represented Ireland at Junior or Young Rider level, or previously having competed at Le Lion d’Angers.

Speaking on his team selection, Dag Albert had the following to say:
“I’m confident in the team that we’ve selected for Ireland this week. There are some very exciting horses included and I think that we’ll definitely be seeing some of them competing at further championships in the future.”

All of Ireland’s WBFSH member studbooks are represented at Mondial Du Lion 2022 with Caroline Powell’s Tik Tok representing the Warmblood Studbook of Ireland, leading to 37 Irish-bred horses taking their place in the competition and further cementing Ireland’s reputation as the leading nation for production of eventing horses.

Six of the Irish Sport Horse entries are mares this year, with five of those appearing in the 7-Year-Old division including Brookwood Supersable (ISH) ridden by Ian Cassels. This mare’s last international outing saw her take 4th place in the Ballindenisk CCI3*S in September.
Another of the Irish Sport Horse mares is Blarney Monbeg Pepper (ISH) ridden by Sian Coleman. This mare also comes into Le Lion on the back of some excellent performances such as taking 3rd place in Millstreet’s CCI3*S in August.

Fellow 7-Year-Old mare, Very Dignified (ISH), ridden by Robbie Kearns heads to Le Lion d’Angers on the back of a consistent season that saw her take the win in the CCI2*L in Kilguikey House in Mallow, Co. Cork.

Championship debutant Jonathan Steele saddles another of the ISH mares in the form of the 7-Year-Old mare R Kid (ISH), who comes into Mondial Du Lion on the back of a Top 10 finish in the CCI3*S in Kilguikey.

The final two mares representing Ireland are GHS Calexico (ISH) ridden by Colin Halliday, herself a full sister to international event horse Van Thee Man (ISH) ridden by Ireland’s Adam Haugh, and the sole 6-Year-Old mare is Monbeg Ainslie (ISH) ridden by the highest placed Irish rider at the London Olympics, Aoife Clarke.

Eight geldings are included in the Irish Sport Horse squad, including the winner of the CCI3*S at Millstreet in August, Rosconnell Alto (ISH) ridden by Ian Cassels. The son of Tabasco Van Erpekom (BWP) also finished third in the CCI3*S in Ballindenisk in September.
Irish Olympic rider from the Tokyo Olympics, Sarah Ennis, returns with Dourough Ferro Class Act (ISH) having also represented the Irish Sport Horse studbook in Le Lion d’Angers in 2021 finishing 7th overall in the 6-year-old division.

Former Irish European Young Rider Championship rider Patrick Whelan enters the 7-year-old class double handed with the geldings Altitu (ISH) and Piltown OBOS (ISH). Altitu goes to Mondial Du Lion on the back of a victory in the CCI3*S in Kilguikey House in July, with Piltown OBOS (ISH) featuring well in the CCIO4*-NC-S in Ballindenisk in September.

Alex Houston brings the gelding Atlantic Rockstar, sired by the recently approved stallion Beach Ball (ISH) to Le Lion this year having featured strongly in both Ballindenisk and Millstreet during the summer. They’ll be looking to build on the summer’s performances with a strong showing in France.
Co. Kilkenny’s Christine O’Donnell brings the sole traditionally bred Irish Sport Horse on the Irish squad with her to Mondial Du Lion. The 7-year-old son of the thoroughbred stallion Craigsteel (GB) is a half brother to the international event horse DOD Buster Rhymes (ISH), ridden by Britain’s Sophie Lane.

Two of Ireland’s three ISH 6-year-old entrants are geldings, including MBF Back To Back (ISH) ridden by championship debutant Meabh Bolger. Having won the CCI2*-S in Ballindenisk in July, they approach their first championship in top form.

Ireland’s final entrant is the homebred, owned and produced, Stellor Deelite (ISH) for Irish Championship lynchpin Sarah Ennis and her second mount of Mondial Du Lion 2022. Sired by Caricello (Holst), the dam Dee Mac (ISH) competed internationally by Nicola Ennis and is a full sister to the international eventer Coromandel (ISH) ridden now for Britain by Guy Cubitt.

With such a strong field of representatives, the Horse Sport Ireland will be looking forward to another successful showing in Le Lion d’Angers.

Irish Sport Horses representing Horse Sport Ireland:


Altitu (ISH) – 2015 gelding by Orestus (KWPN) out of Happy Choice (SWB) by Aram (KWPN). Breeder & Owner: Seamus Carew. Rider: Patrick Whelan. 

Atlantic Rockstar (ISH): 2015 gelding by Beach Ball (ISH) out of Missey Elliot (ISH). Breeder: Alexandra R Houston. Owner: Sam & Alex Houston. Rider: Alex Houston.

BGK Valentine (ISH) -2015 gelding by Craigsteel (TB) out of Drimo Donn (ISH) by Clover Dubh (ID). Breeder: Michael O’Driscoll. Owner: Christine O’Donnell. Rider: Christine O’Donnell (IRL).

Blarney Monbeg Pepper (ISH) – 2015 mare by Dignified Van’t Zorgvliet out of Ballyeden Hero (ISH) by Cult Hero (CAN) (TB). Breeder: Marie & Peadar Carter. Owner: Caroline Colthurst. Rider: Sian Coleman (IRL).

Brookwood Supersable (ISH) – 2015 mare by Tolan R (KWPN) out of Brookwood First Lady (ISH) by Captain Clover (ISH). Breeder and Owner: Pat Duffy. Rider: Ian Cassells (IRL).

Dourough Ferro Class Acpiltownt (ISH) – 2015 gelding by S Creevagh Ferro Ex Siebe (KWPN) out of Ishd Class Act (ISH) by O.B.O.S. Quality 004 (OLD). Breeder: Gordon Drury. Owner: Wendy Harris and Niki Potterton. Rider: Sarah Ennis (IRL).

GHS Calexico (ISH) – 2015 mare by Van Gogh (KWPN) out of Penhaligon Cairo (AES) by Cavalier Royale (HOLST). Breeder and Owner: Leanne Marshall. Rider: Colin Halliday (IRL).

Piltown OBOS (ISH) – 2015 gelding O.B.O.S. Quality 004 (OLD) out of Piltown Cult (ISH) by Cult Hero (CAN) (TB). Breeder: Patrick Doody. Owner: Michael Widger. Rider: Patrick Whelan (IRL).

R Kid (ISH) – 2015 mare by Centrestage (AES) out of Fairway Lady (AEAS) by Fairman K (AES). Breeder: Jonathan Hugh Steele. Owner: J C Steele. Rider: Jonathan Hugh Steele (IRL).

Rosconnell Alto (ISH) – 2015 gelding by Tabasco Van Erpekom (BWP) out of All Clover (ISH) by Cavalier Clover Lad (ISH). Breeder: Patrick Lacey. Owner: Gerry & Fiona Leahy. Rider: Ian Cassells (IRL).

Very Dignified (ISH) – 2015 mare by Dignified Van’t Zorgvliet out of Kateys Gem (ISH) by Ricardo Z (ZANG). Breeder: Deirdre Bowler. Owner: Trish Kearns. Rider: Robbie Kearns (IRL).



MBF Back To Back (ISH) – 2016 gelding by Metropole (KWPN) out of Aughmore Irokos Dream (ISH) by Iroko (WESTF). Breeder: Liam Duffin. Owner: Brian Flynn. Rider: Meabh Bolger (IRL).

Monbeg Ainslie (ISH) – 2016 mare by Emperor Augustus (TB) out of Tullabeg B (UNK) out of Ramiro B (BWP). Breeder: Nicholas Cousins. Owner and Rider: Aoife Clarke (IRL).

Stellor Deelite (ISH) – 2016 gelding by Caricello (HOLST) out of Dee Mac (ISH) by Cruising Harry (ISH). Breeder and Owner: Niki Potterton. Rider: Sarah Ennis (IRL).

Other Irish-bred horses competing:

Barrington 57 (ISH)[was Quantized] – 2015 gelding by Quantino (HOLST) out of Wheres Juliette [ISH] by Luck Valier [ISH]. Breeder: Olivia Forrestal (Wexford). Owner: Johnny Hornby. Rider: Izzy Taylor (GBR).

Brookfield Future News (ISH)[was Future News] – 2015 gelding by Future Trend (OLD) out of Cashmere Breeze (AEAS) by Last News (TB). Breeder: Hilary Furlonger (Antrim). Owner: John, Chloe, Perry and Alison. Rider: Piggy March (GBR).

CBI Aldo (ISH) – 2015 gelding by Goodluck VDL (KWPN) out of KMS Eclipse (ISH) by Ramon (KWPN). Breeder: Raymond Carrol (Offaly). Owner: Greg Kinsella. Rider: Caroline Powell (NZL).

Dassett Arthalent (ISH)[was Arthalent] – 2015 gelding by Valent (KWPN) out of Timpany Night (ISH)[TIH] by Nigrasine (TB). Breeder and owner: Catherine Abbott. Rider: Piggy March (GBR).

Fernhill Kankan (unk) – 2015 mare. Owner: Carol Gee. Rider: Jonelle Price (NZL).

Heritage Stellor Laccato (ISH) – 2016 gelding by Latour (BWP) out of Stakkato Rain (HANN) by Stakkato (HANN). Breeder: Anne-Marie O’Gorman. Owner: N Potterton and T McKeown. Rider: Tamara Acklin (SUI).

HSH Blake (ISH) – 2015 gelding by Tolan R (KWPN) out of Doughiska Lass (ISH) by Kannan (KWPN). Breeder: Justin Burke. Owner: Kelley Hutchinson. Rider: Caroline Martin (USA).

HSH Connor (ISH) – 2016 gelding by Connor 48 (HOLST) out of Galwaybay Merstona (ISH) by Mermus R (KWPN). Breeder: Justin Burke. Owner: Kelley Hutchinson. Rider: Caroline Martin (USA).

Islandwood The Rising (ISH) – 2016 gelding by Ricardo Z (ZANG) out of Suir Touch (ISH) by Touchdown (ISH). Breeder and owner: Gerard O’Connor. Rider: Sebastian Roldan Olivera (ARG).

Jerpoint Wonder (ISH)[TIH] – 2016 mare by Wounderwall (TB) out of Jerpoint Mist by Clover Man. Breeder and owner: William Savage. Rider: Daniel Dunst (AUT).

Keep It Cooley (ISH) – 2015 gelding by Ramirio B (BWP) out of Rathlin Imp (ISH)[TIH] by Master Imp (TB). Breeder: Georgina Plilips (Wicklow). Owner: Stephanie Oaken. Rider: Wills Oakden (GBR).

Midnight Endeavour (ISH) – 2016 mare by Future Trend (OLD) out of Annsfort Coole Robin (ISH) by Ricardo Z (ZANG). Breeder: James Nash (Clare). Owner: H Jarvis. Rider: Tom Jackson (GBR).

Plot Twist B (ISH) – 2015 gelding by Plot Blue (KWPN) out of Safieria (KWPN) by Concorde (KWPN). Breeder and owner: Etter Sportfferde AG (Offaly). Rider: Tom Jackson (GBR).

Rogerstown (ISH) – 2015 gelding by OBOS Quality 004 (OLD) out of Brookpark Jazz (ISH)[TIH] by Balda Beau (TB)[IRL]. Breeder: Joe Kingston. Owner: Pat Delahunty. Rider: Paola Castelloyyi (ITA).

Royal Encounter (ISH) – 2015 gelding by Lancelot (KWPN) out of Cavalier Lassie (ISH) by Cavalier Royale (HOLST). Breeder: Perter Rice (Monaghan). Owner: Jodie Amos. Rider: Marcio Carvalho Jorge (BRA).

SBH Big Wall (ISH) – 2015 gelding by Puissance (ISH)[TIH] out of Unanibeath (ISH) by Courage II (HOLST). Breeder: John P Murphy (Kilkenny). Owner: Barry Griffin and Sara Hakala. Rider: Izzy Taylor (GBR).

Shannondale Archie (ISH) – 2015 gelding by Shannondale Sarco St Ghyvan (BEWB) out of Curraghtown Flight (ISH) by Lux Z (HANN). Breeder: Shannondale Stud (Clare). Owner: Jenny Levett. Rider: Bill Levett (AUS).

Shanroe Cooley (ISH)[was Shanroe Italk] – 2015 gelding by Dallas VDL (BWP) out of Shanroe Saphire (ISH) by Condios (HOLST). Breeder: Anthony Smyth (Down). Owner: Cooley Farm. Rider: Elisabeth Halliday-Sharp (USA).

SSK Cape Cooley (ISH)[was SSK Izabella] – 2016 mare by Simba (KWPN) out of Lady Wivollet (ISH) by Wivollet Vanbeek (KWPN). Breeder: Sharon Clifford (Kerry). Owner: Cooley Farm Rider: Andrew Heffernan (NED).

Sumas Tina Turner (ISH) – 2016 mare by Quantino (HOLST) out of Sumas Fanny Brice (ISH) by VDL Arkansas (KWPN). Breeder and owner: Suma Stud. Rider: Isabel English (GBR).

Tik Tok (WSI) – 2016 gelding by Ulysses M2S (KWPN) out of Ballinamurra Coors Light by Desir Du Chateau. Breeder: Claire Wood. Owner: Jo West. Rider: Caroline Powell (NZL).

Tullibards Tick the Boxes (ISH) – 2016 gelding by Tullibards Bennys Legacy out of Fairy Bride (TB)[IRL] by Brian Boru (TB). Breeder and owner: Hans Jurgen Kuehnle. Rider: Pauline Knorr (GER).

Horse Sport Ireland’s participation at Le Lion d’Angers, is supported by the Department of Agriculture, Food and Marine Equine Technical Support fund.