A pure-bred Irish Draught mare made history at Harrogate when she became the first of her breed to win the Cuddy qualifier at the Great Yorkshire Show (8-10 July) — and, it is believed, be the first ever to qualify for the Horse of the Year Show (HOYS).
Judge Margaret Furness had 14 animals to choose from, with five called forward for further inspection. Enid Lord’s home-bred 16-year-old broodmare, Ballineen Glen Abbess, got the nod over Sue Grimshaw’s riding pony breeding champion, Kitty Kelley, making her first — and last — showring appearance this year with her first foal at foot.
Preston-based Enid Lord last competed at HOYS as a show jumper on her home-produced mare, Banbury Cross, in 1993 — finishing fifth in the grade C final — and little did she dream she would be returning.
“I honestly thought there was no point in us going into the Cuddy, but I always believe in supporting the breed, so I did,” she said. “I will be so proud to represent them at HOYS.”
Glen Abbess has been a wonderful model and last year, while she was in-foal, stood ridden and in-hand champion at the Royal and won the Blue Chip ridden title. This year, she repeated her Royal in-hand form and this was also her second consecutive Great Yorkshire Show in-hand tricolour.
Her strapping foal, by her own Irish draught stallion Bealagh Blue, was champion colt foal in the hunter breeding section and reserve foal overall.
Read H&H’s full showing report from the Great Yorkshire Show in this week’s Horse & Hound (24 July, ’08), on sale now