Childéric Saddles 5YO Final

THE Childéric Saddles five-year-old section of the Stepping Stones to Success League finals went the way of the league winner, Diamond Mistress, who won the 11-runner final by a commanding margin under Sian Coleman. The Irish Sport Horse mare, who was competing for the first time this season before her very proud owner/breeder, Kate Jarvey, topped the scores in all three phases of the competition on her way to a winning total of 231.5, over 18 marks clear of her nearest rival. Diamond Mistress was on 60 marks following Anne Marie Dunphy’s judging of the dressage phase; on 143.5, she comfortably topped the combined scores of Ian Fearon (show jumping) and Britain’s J.P. Sheffield (cross-country) in the Derby Arena while the day’s conformation and type judge, Johnny Kyle, had her two marks clear of the field on 28.

“It couldn’t have gone better!” enthused Mallow-based Coleman who is competing three horses at this week’s Ballindenisk international horse trials. “This is such a special mare to ride and to watch as well. She has great movement and loads of scope over a fence, also, she has the most amazing temperament and is very exciting for the future.”

Owner and rider have now decided that they will not do the Young Eventhorse Series with the mare this season but instead go down the route of ‘proper’ eventing. The bay won the four-year-old division of the Dublin Horse Show young event horse championships in Lambertstown last August having already landed the YES title for her age group. “She has nothing more to prove in that format,” said Coleman who partnered Diamond Mistress into second place in the EI100 at Lisgarvan House (1) earlier this month on her sole start to date under Eventing Ireland rules. “We won’t do too much with her but I suppose we would have to think about qualifying for the Michael Leonard championships (for five and six-year-olds) later in the year.

“Kate hadn’t been to Wexford Equestrian before but was so impressed by the venue and competition that she said she would definitely send other young horses of hers for the Stepping Stones league in the future as it’s a great way of showcasing them. She was delighted when talking to the judges that they all had such nice things to say about her mare while I can’t stress how fortunate I am to have the opportunity to ride these wonderful mares that Kate has bred and that mean so much to both of us.” Diamond Mistress is by the Holstein stallion Diarado out of the 2008 Master Imp mare Shes My Master who competed up to CCI3*-L level with Sweden’s Maya Andersson Gouveia.

Taghmon’s Noel Dunne finished second in the final and the five-year-old league with his own Zangersheide stallion Cristiano TG Z (213.1). As the bay was bred in Belgium, his breeder, Guns Farm, missed out on the extra money sponsored by Horse Sport Ireland. Cristiano TG Z, who has 14 Show Jumping Ireland points, is a son of Canturano Z out of the Cassini I mare Rassini.

Jane O’Flynn finished third on Tuesday with Dick McEligott’s Greenhall Good Decision (212.6) and, as points and a half were on offer for the final, they also placed third in the league. This bay Ars Vivendi gelding, who has picked up nine SJI points this year, has had one EI run, placing seventh in a four-year-old EI90 class last October in Grove. As his prefix would suggest, Greenhall Good Decision was bred in Co Wicklow by Derry Rothwell and is the sixth of 10 foals listed on the Irish Horse Register out of the Limmerick mare Greenhall Indicator who first caught this writer’s eye when winning the yearling championship at Balmoral in 2009.

Childéric Saddles five-year-old league – 1, Kate Jarvey’s Diamond Express (Sian Coleman) 34 points; 2, Noel Dunne’s Cristiano TG Z (Owner) 30.5; 3, Dick McElligott’s Greenhall Good Decision (Jane O’Flynn) 30; 4, Ciara Kinsella’s Tykillen Jazz (Owner) 24; 5, Louise Bloomer and Jinnie Webb’s Shannondale Levi (Louise Bloomer) 23.5; 6, Margaret Hope’s Agatha Raisin (Eleanor Hope) 21.5.