THE Irish show jumping team made their presence known early in Deauville as they qualified for the Longines EEF Nations Cup final following an excellent third-place finish in last Friday’s semi-final. Taylor Vard’s team of Thomas Ryan, Jessica Burke, Kevin Gallagher and Jenny Rankin finished the two rounds of jumping with just four faults.

Tipperary’s Thomas Ryan with Springfield 21, owned by H3K Equestrian AB, and Sligo’s Kevin Gallagher with Ballypatrick Flamenco (ISH), owned by Greg Broderick, both jumped foot-perfect double-clear rounds.

Galway’s Jessica Burke with Namamia, owned by Liam Nicholas and Tyrone’s Jenny Rankin with Carmela Z, owned by Vanessa Mannix, were also clear in the first round. Claiming victory was Belgium ahead of Spain in second and Ireland in third. The remaining qualifying places for the EEF Nations Cup final went to Sweden and Portugal. Five more teams can qualify for the final at the upcoming Budapest Nations Cup in Hungary.

Pender goes close

Earlier at the show, Jessica Burke got the Irish contingent off to a great start when she took the win in the 1.40m class with Louisa Church’s Inpulss, clear in 61.11. In the proceeding 1.55m, Molly Hughes Bravo took sixth place with HHS Vancouver, clear in 69.66.

On Sunday, Mikey Pender narrowly missed out on a win in the Deauville CSIO3* 1.50m.

Riding HHS Fast Forward, he delivered a clear in a time of 40.36. Just eight booked their place against the clock and six of those delivered double clears. Leading the victory lap was Andreas Schou and I Know when he clocked 39.66.