Toni Quail and Bobeska win hugely successful Horseware Event Riders Championship Challenge at Dundalk Stadium in fundraiser for World Equestrian Games
- 29 March 2018, 15:29
Twelve of Ireland’s Team Ireland Equestrian and Eventing Ireland Members took to the racetrack in Dundalk last night (Wednesday), for the Horseware Event Riders Championship Challenge – the last race on the card which was won by Toni Quail and the Kevin O’Donnell-owned & trained Bobeska (20/1) who led from start to finish.
The race was held to help raise funds towards the Irish Eventing High-Performance Squads and the senior athletes journey to the World Equestrian Games, in Tryon, USA later on this year, which is also the first opportunity for the Irish Eventing team to qualify for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.
Sponsored by Dundalk-based company, Horseware Ireland, the 1m 4f race saw Toni Quail and Bobeska take up the early running and they opened up a lead of almost 10 lengths at one stage before crossing the line with a 2 1/2 L advantage at the finish over Sarah Ennis and the Gordon Elliot-trained 5/4 favourite, The Game Changer.
Winning jockey Toni Quail was keen to thank trainer Kevin O’Donnell and all those who supported the event:
“What a great idea as a fundraiser with realistic goals. As a rider it gave me an opportunity to fulfill one of my dreams and perhaps it could become an annual fundraising event? Big thanks to Kevin O’Donnell for the lend of the wonderful horse, Bobeska, and to everyone that sponsored me, the race and the fundraiser.”
Irish Eventing High Performance Manager Sally Corscadden, who herself guided Water Sprite to a 7th place finish, gave her reaction afterwards:
“We are absolutely delighted with the success of the race night. There was a great buzz at the racecourse and brilliant enthusiastic supporters for all the jockeys. It had a real championship feel with the crowd cheering from the stands. It was great to see so many members of Eventing Ireland and the racing community getting behind us and enjoying themselves as well.”
Corscadden was particularly keen to pay tribute to Declan Cullen who was a driving force behind the idea:
“We have to thank Declan Cullen for coming up with this initiative and driving the support. It was a real thrill to ride in the race and there was a great camaraderie between the jockeys. I have to thank all the jockeys for taking part and raising €2,000 each in sponsorship, it was a brilliant effort and we appreciate them getting behind the Squad for the World Equestrian Games.
“There were so many people who kindly gave their time including all the generous trainers and owners and I would particularly like to thank Gordon Elliott for supplying three horses on the night and very nearly a winner for Sarah Ennis. Also, the efforts of Emma Meehan of Dundalk, and Alison and Pat in Eventing Ireland must not be forgotten as a fantastic help with the logistics and organising the entries and ticket sales. All the officials in the weigh room at Dundalk were very welcoming and supportive and looked after us superbly. I would like to thank Horsewear for their generous sponsorship of the race and supplying the jockeys with our personalised breeches.”
Horseware Eventer Riders Championship Challenge – Dundalk 28/03/2018 (Polytrack)
Going ALL-WEATHER SLOW Age4yo +Winner €70 Distance 1m 4f 0y