One Irish combination impresses, while others deal with disappointment in European Eventing Championships showjumping

  • The European Eventing Championships showjumping proved influential for most of the Irish squad in Avenches, Switzerland today (26 September). The team of Clare Abbott (Jewelent), Sam Watson (Ballybolger Talisman), Padraig McCarthy (Leonidas II) and Cathal Daniels (LEB Lias Jewel) finished in seventh.

    Clare Abott was the sole member of the team to jump clear in the final European Eventing Championships showjumping phase, and she ultimately finished a very creditable 14th with the nine-year-old grey gelding, Jewelent (pictured), owned by herself, Barbra Allen and Lisa Rosbotham.

    “He felt brilliant and this is his hardest phase, but it’s improving all the time,” Clare said after her round, which helped her climb four places after the cross-country. “He felt very fresh, he warmed up beautifully and it just felt like a really smooth round, so I can’t believe it – it’s a great way to finish.”

    Clare said that she thought the design of the showjumping track helped her horse to jump clear today.

    “It suited us – it was quite flowing and it just wasn’t as technical as some of the top level courses. I’m delighted with my horse’s performance and I can’t ask any more than that.”

    Padraig McCarthy and his own and Peter Cattell’s 17-year-old Leonidas II, who was formerly campaigned at the top level by Sir Mark Todd, had something of a disaster in the final phase. They went into the showjumping in 14th place, but five show jumps down (20 penalties in total), dropped them right down the leaderboard to 34th place. Fellow teammate, Sam Watson, had three fences down with the 10-year-old Ballybolder Talisman. They finished one place ahead of Padraig in 33rd.

    The final member of the Irish team, Cathal Daniels, had one rail down with the 11-year-old mare, LEB Lias Jewel. After a run-out on yesterday’s cross-country course too, this meant that they finished the competition in 43rd.

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