McConnell wins Studbook Series seven-year-old with Inlaws Manolo

  • 9 May 2022, 12:40

Derek McConnell picked up his first victory in this year’s HSI Studbook Series seven-year-old class with Inlaws Manolo (ISH) at Barnadown on Sunday.

The pair, who were third in the opening leg at The Meadows and represented Ireland at Lanaken last year, went first in the jump-off but saw off the remaining three who qualified.

A very happy McConnell had concerns about his horse’s greenness in the final with the qualifying round having been in Barnadown’s sand arena – but was confident of going close.

“The track probably suited him as there was a lot of space between the fences and he likes to gallop, he likes to go fast. There was a couple of long runs and I really let him open up,” McConnell said.

“It’s never an advantage to go first in the jump-off but I felt when I finished the round I was quick enough to do well, even though I knew what was there in competition after us. It’s really nice, though, that it’s his day.”

HSI Interim Head of Breeding, Innovation and Development, Dr Sonja Egan with Inlaws Manolo, rider Derek McConnell and owner Tom Hennessy

Having enjoyed a successful Studbook Series last year, the pair were selected for the World Championships at Lanaken, McConnell will be hopeful of being chosen again this time around.

“He was very good last year in the Studbook Series and in the Development Series last year and was lucky enough to be selected for Lanaken,” McConnell added.

“He was a bit green when he went there, however, and put the first fence down in the first qualifier – that was it, our chances were gone.

“I felt he was a little lacking in experience when he went there, even though he was deserving of his spot. This year I feel he is more of a proper horse.

“Tom and Mark Hester bred him – he’s by Corland (HOLST) out of a Lord Z (HOLST) mare. He was produced originally by Daisy Duggan, and she did an incredible job. She qualified him for Dublin.

“So he’s always been a good horse and the Hesters got to Lanaken to see their boy jump, which was actually the first time I had met them.

“They also won a few quid off the breeders’ prize for his wins in the Development Series so they’ve been very happy with me!”

Orla Queally was one of seven who went double clear on Kilnamac Maud (ISH) in the six-year-old final, and she told of her plans for a tilt at qualifying for the RDS.

“It was great to get a double clear here, it was a great performance” she said.

“She’s been really consistent. I’ve brought her up through the 1.10m and the 1.20m classes and the plan was always to compete in the Studbook Series. We’ll go for the six-year-old qualifier for Dublin, which start in two weeks, and I’m really looking forward to that too.”

Rider Michelle Kenny was understandably delighted with the performance of Mika (AES) in the five-year-old final.

“Mika jumped very well, I’m really happy with her. I feel like she’s come on an awful lot and it’s great for these young horses to get the experience jumping on the grass like this,” Kenny said.

“I sourced her as a three-year-old from the UK and she had been imported from Europe, originally. This is the first year a horse like her can jump in the Studbook Series and she is going to benefit hugely from it.

“She was a little late to the competition scene – I only started in February with her and I produced her with these classes in mind so she’s going to benefit from now on. She’ll go to Cavan for the next leg of the Studbook Series, and she’ll compete in the rest of the competition before hopefully going for the Breeders Classic later in the year.”



1st Inlaws Manolo (ISH) – Gelding by Corland (HOLST) out of Helena de la Vie (BWP) by Lord Z (HOLST). Owner: Sorcha Hennessy. Rider: Derek McConnell. Breeder: Tomas Hester.

2nd HHS Cornetta (ISH) – Mare by Cornet Obolensky (BWP) out of HHS Acorado (ISH) by Acorado (HOLST). Owner: Bravo Hughes Ltd. Rider: Michael Pender. Breeder: Marion Hughes.

3rd ESI ALI (ISH) – Gelding by Stakkato Gold (HANN) out of Adelheid (KWPN) by Tygo (NON). Owner: Clare Hughes. Rider Seamus Hughes Kennedy. Breeder: Ennisnag Stud

4th Tranquility Bay (ISH) – Gelding by Emerald Van’t Ruytershof (BWP) out of Tullibards Lux Sensational (ISH) by Lux Z (HANN). Owner: Richard Bourns. Rider: Joanne Blair. Breeder: John Mulvey

5th SHS SoCo Blue (HOLST) – Stallion by Zirocco Blue (SF) out of Belazza (HOLST) by Clearway (HOLST). Owner: David Cullen. Rider: Leah Stack. Breeder: Steffen Meerboth

6th CBI Bella Donna (ISH) Mare by Zapatero VDL (KWPN) out of CSF Lulu (ISH) by Luidam (KWPN). Owner: Kayleigh Soden. Rider: Vincent Byrne. Breeder: Aidan Carroll.



To view pedigree details of horse and rider combinations of the seven double clear rounds, see


To view pedigree details of horse and rider combinations of the 13 double clear rounds, see