Ireland finish fifth in Nations Cup final after thriller in Barcelona

  • 24 September 2016, 23:36

The Irish Show Jumping team finished in fifth place in tonight’s (Saturday) Nations Cup World Final in Barcelona, after a thrilling competition where the final result hung in the balance until the very last rider had jumped.


Darragh Kenny and Go Easy De Muze produced a superb clear round in the Nations Cup World Final in Barcelona (Photo: Sonya Dempsey/Equestrian PR Services)

Shane Breen and Golden Hawk opened with two fences down when first to go for Robert Splaine’s team. Offaly’s Darragh Kenny then produced an outstanding clear round with the 10-year-old gelding Go Easy De Muze as Ireland stayed in touch with the early pace-setter.  Denis Lynch and the stallion All Star 5 managed to keep all the fences standing but finished fractionally over the time allowed to finish with one time fault.

Greg Broderick and The 10-year-old Irish Irish Sport Horse gelding MHS Going Global, looked to be heading for another perfect clear round, before a rub at the second last fence saw them come home with four faults. This left Ireland on a five fault total, the same score as Italy who took fourth place due to a faster combined time of their three best riders.

Horse Sport Ireland Team Manager Robert Splaine said:

“It was a high class performance from the Irish team, to finish fifth out of 18 of the world’s top teams who qualified to jump here in Barcelona this week and just one fence off a podium finish. Darragh Kenny in particular jumped a superb clear round with Go Easy De Muze , a horse who he has only had for a few months and looks to have an incredible future ahead of him. I would like to thank all our riders here this week and also all our Irish team members throughout the year who helped us to reach this final. I would especially like to pay tribute to the owners of these wonderful horses. Once again the Furussiyya final has delivered two incredible days of competition and proved that Nations Cup jumping is one of the most exciting spectacles in our sport.”

Germany are the new Nations Cup World Final champions, taking the title after a thrilling jump-off against Britain. Both teams finished on a zero score, with Olympic individual Gold Medallist Nick Skelton and Big Star laying down what looked an unbeatable clear when first to go against the clock. However German maestro Marcus Ehning then had the Spanish crowd on their feet with a stunning display aboard Pret A Tout, shaving almost two seconds off Skelton’s target to lift the trophy.

The result was a fitting end to the Nations Cup career for German legend Ludger Beerbaum, who delivered a vital clear in his very last team appearance for his home Nation. Britain finished as runners-up, while The United States took the third spot on the podium. Italy finished fourth, one place ahead of Ireland who collected an impressive €110,000 for their efforts. Switzerland finished sixth, with Belgium seventh and The Netherlands in eighth.

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