FOUR horses were entered, and competed, in the Treo Eile thoroughbred class at Tubberbride Stables last Sunday, which was a welcome turn-out as none had been entered in round one of the Eventing Ireland Western Region Bert’s Properties starter series.

Co Westmeath-based South African native Candice Reusch ran out a delighted clear-cut winner on the 13-year-old Tiger Twenty Two, who completed on his Philip Scott-awarded dressage score (54.5 points), while the Julie Spring-ridden The Green Grocer had a fence down for a total of 49.5.

Reusch worked for four years with Gordon Elliott who took over the training of the British-bred Tiger Twenty Two in the summer of 2019 and sent him out to win twice over hurdles. By the Montjeu stallion Authorized, who is now standing at Ger O’Neill’s Capital Stud in Co Kilkenny, the bay first ran in a two-year-old maiden at York in May 2013 for Richard Fahey who sent him out to score over six furlongs at the same track a couple of months later.

Tiger Twenty Two also spent over four years in training with another north Yorkshire handler, Brian Rothwell, before joining Cullentra House from where he made the last of his 49 career starts at Cork in May 2021.

In contrast, The Green Grocer, a seven-year-old Power gelding, had a much shorter racing career, failing to finish in the first four in one outing in a bumper and three over hurdles when trained by RTÉ racing pundit, Andrew McNamara. The chesnut last ran in February 2023.

You can read more in Pony Tales (page 98) about Reusch, who acknowledges the help she has received in preparing for the starter series from Dot Love and Charlie Walshe, who both have enjoyed a lot of success with ex-racehorses.

There were some notable absentees from the rider ranks on Sunday and just four combinations also started in the Milchem Equestrian pony class sponsored by the Western Region’s chairman, Ralph Conroy.

At the conclusion of the competition, the round one winners, Lara Field and the five-year-old Irish Sport Horse mare Creganna Gypsy O, had to settle for second on 33 points behind Lisa McGrath and Smart Tom. Both ponies recorded clear jumping rounds while their two rivals were eliminated.