Connemaras to get own working hunter class at Dublin

  • Plans to give Ireland’s only native pony its own working hunter class at this year’s Fáilte Ireland Dublin Horse Show in August have been welcomed by breed societies.
    For the first time, Connemara ponies will compete for a prize-fund of €5,000 over a 90cm course by Ireland’s most senior cross-country course-designer Tommy Brennan and top show jumping designer Ted Gibney.
    Show director Pat Hanley said the inclusion marks a move towards more performance horse competitions in Dublin.
    “It will not be your average working hunter class. We want to show the Connemara in its working clothes, so as well as the usual rails, we will have ditches, water and cross-country-style fences,” he said.
    Anne Harries, chairman of the British Connemara Pony Society, said: “The Connemara is a tremendous performance pony — they jump for fun.
    “There are many Connemaras jumping in British Show Jumping Association (BSJA) competitions.
    “I imagine a number of our members will hop over to Dublin for the show.”
    Somerset Connemara breeder Jackie Webb’s Bunowen Castle Ri was Bailey’s Olympia mountain and moorland ridden champion in 2005 and 2007.
    She said: “The inclusion of a working hunter class at the show will be an important shop window for the breed.”
    There will be no qualifying competitions for the show. Owners of suitable ponies are invited to submit their application and pony’s performance record and the best 20 will be chosen.
    The Dublin Horse Show takes place on 6-10 August and will include three-year-old performance horse classes.

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