7/9/2018 IRISH FIELD NEWSPAPER REPORTS:
Greg Broderick retained his crown in the TRM/HSI New Heights Champion Series for the second year while the final Grand Prix win in the top series went to Capt. Geoff Curran
FOR the second successive year, Tipperary international Greg Broderick retained his overall crown in the €105,000 TRM/Horse Sport Ireland New Heights Champions Series at Barnadown last weekend.
A third-place finish in the final was enough to see Broderick come out on top with the Mary Ellen De Ruschi-owned Duco, while fellow Ballypatrick Stables rider Darragh Ryan finished as series runner-up.
The final Grand Prix win in the top series went to Captain Geoff Curran who earned his second Grand Prix win in as many days when he came out on top in the 1.50m New Heights Champions Series in Barnadown on Sunday afternoon.
Riding the Minister for Defence’s Ringwood Glen, Curran was last to go in the timed decider and stopped the clock at 43.93 to secure the win.
A delightd Capt Curran told The Irish Field: “I’m absolutely delighted with all my horses this weekend. It was absolutely fantastic to win both Grand Prix classes. I couldn’t be happier with how the horses went.
“I brought all eight of my horses with me and it’s a credit to Maurice (Cousins) and his team in Barnadown that there were such a large amount of entries. The ground conditions and general standard of the show is such that people are happy to bring their horses both young and old to compete there. The (Sunday) course was big. It wasn’t too technical but the fences were big and with having to go up and down the hill it presented a challenge.
“I was very fortunate to be last to go in the jump-off. I had seen a good few go and anyone who had tried to go fast ended up with a fence down.
“I was lucky because if I’d been in the middle of the draw and had the likes of Greg (Broderick) with Chinook and Susan (Fitzpatrick) coming behind me I probably would have sped up and could have had faults but I knew going in that I could afford to be cautious.
“It totally worked out for me, my horse jumped awesome he seems to be rolling back the years, he felt fantastic.
“My other horse Drumiller Lough, who is 15 years old, won the National Grand Prix on Saturday was the same. He too felt great.
“He is a horse with amazing energy and once he gets into a rhythm and a good flow he is brilliant. The feeling he gives you when he gallops is brilliant.
“We were midway in the draw so I had to take a bit of a chance, but the course suited us and once he got into a good flow I knew he’d do well.
“The plan for my team now is to head to Belgium and France at the end of the month for some three-star shows so hopefully we can do as well away as we did here.
“I thought the whole show was very well run. I didn’t have a horse for the feature five and six-year-old class but I watched it all and thought that it was a great competition and showed off some really talented young horses well.”
Thirty-nine starters were reduced to 10 for the timed jump-off in the €10,000 class. First to go was Darragh Ryan riding Rincoola Rua, they began well but a fault at the final fence put them out of contention.
Next in was veteran rider Francis Connors and Erne Lady Goldilocks who left all the fences up in what, at that time, seemed a slow time of 45.45 but would be good enough for the runner-up spot in the final line-up.
Alex Butler and Dekato collected eight faults at the second last and last fences in a fast time of 41.46.
Greg Broderick posted a clear round with Duco but in a slow time of 48.68 which would slot them into third place.
Castlefield Vegas and Ger O’Neill tried a tight slice into the double midway round the track but had the first part down which led to a run out at the second so they decided to retire.
Tholm Keane (BHM Big Time) had fences five and six down for eight faults. Seventh into the ring was Susan Fitzpatrick riding her Millstreet Grand Prix CSI2* winner Fellow Castlefield.
They began well but, urged on by the crowd, towards the end of the track, their rhythm became disrupted which resulted in them having the final fence down in the fastest time of the day of 41.43.
Broderick and his second mount Chinook were on target for a win when four faults at the second last fence saw them out of the running.
The penultimate rider, Peter Smyth, was looking good until the fence following the double, where he and CHS Krooze collected four faults in 42.14.
Last to go was Capt Curran and Ringwood Glen. They produced an accurate clear, breaking the finish beam in 43.93 to secure the victory.
Broderick’s third place with Duco added to his wins in the Meadows and Portmore earlier in the season and meant that he claimed the leading rider prize of €2,000.
It was a good day for the Ballypatrick yard as Ashleigh Skillen won the €1,000 leading groom award and Darragh Ryan secured the €1,000 on offer for the Series runner-up. He recorded five top-10 placings throughout the series.
The top breeder’s prize of €2,500 went to Harold McGahern for Rincoola Rua, while second place went to Hugh Fitzpatrick for Erne Ladygoldilocks, and John McCann received €1,000 for Gelvins Touch.