13TH ANNUAL CONNEMARA PONY SHOW
Sunday, 31st July 2016
2016 Supreme and Junior Champion
Castle Cleo (Glencarrig Knight/Castle Gypsy) owned by Henry O’Toole
2016 Willows Ingredients Ltd /Midland’s All Ireland Broodmare Champion
Loughmore Suzy (Linsfort Barne/Hazy Rebel) owned by Paddy Kearns
2016 Foal Champion
Brocklodge Princess (Brocklodge Buster/Loughmore Suzy) owned by Paddy Kearns
The Midlands Connemara Pony Breeders held their 13th annual show on Sunday, 31st July – a week later than normal due to the RDS rescheduling their dates in view of the upcoming Rio Olympics. After holding the show on the wettest summer day last year, a watching brief was held on the weather forecast and the week leading up to the show did not bode well. However, the weather gods were on our side and Sunday morning dawned dry if cloudy and bar one shower in the morning, it remained dry, cloudy and warm.
Before moving on to the show itself, some thank you’s. First of all a huge thank you and heartfelt appreciation to our main sponsors, Willows Ingredients Limited. For a number of years now, Willows Ingredients Ltd. have been staunch supporters of the MCPB both through sponsorship and with their personal presence at events. The MCPB are privileged to call Carmelia and David Scrivens friends and many personal friendships have sprung up over the years of their involvement. Neither the Show nor the MCPB would be the same without the presence of Willows Ingredients – thank you.
Connolly’s Red Mills have also been long standing supporters and sponsors of the Midlands Show and it was our pleasure this year to welcome Tony Flaherty to present the Supreme Champion with the Tom Fahy Perpetual Cup and Midlands Trophy.
To our many class sponsors, our deepest thanks – you contribute so much to making the show possible.
To our many helpers on the day, ring stewards, parking stewards, runners, commentators and the many other jobs where people voluntarily give up of their time and are key to the successful running of our show – thank you, the show could not run without you.
To Robert Fagan and his team at Mullingar Equestrian – you give us a setting that is second to none.
We are also indebted to Galway Crystal for the beautiful crystal trophies that adorn many of our winners’ houses.
To Annette of The Pantry, Moate – you keep the officials ‘fed and watered’ and hopefully sane! – Thank you.
This year entries were at an all time high and it is always good to see familiar faces, new faces and some that reappear after having had to miss a few years. We hope the day lived up to expectations.
Judges on the day were:
in hand – Ring 1: Cathy Wood and John Varley Ring 2: Margaret Miller and John Joe Bolton
Broodmare Championship: Clare Oaks and Heather Wright
Performance: Nicholas Byre, Tony Ennis, Anne Grimes, Denise Norton and Jamie Frost
From the exhibitors’ point of view, the day had to belong to Henry O’Toole and his 3 year old filly Castle Cleo (Glencarrig Knight-Castle Gypsy), ably shown in the ring by Henry’s son, Michael. I wonder how the conversation went on the way home to Connemara having won both the Supreme and Junior Championships!
Standing reserve in the Supreme Championship was the winner of the 7 year old and over Connemara Stallion class – Dunloughan Troy (Currachmore Cashel-Bay Lass), owned by Terence Sweeney.
The Reserve Junior Champion went to Joe Burke with his 3 year old colt Aniar Cashel (Banks Timber-Gowlane Star) and in the Foal Championship, Reserve was taken by John Harte’s unnamed colt foal (I Love You Melody-Shannon Princess).
The pride of the ‘home team’ was held up when Midlands breeder Paddy Kearns claimed the Willows Ingredients Ltd./Midlands All Ireland Broodmare Championship with Loughmore Suzy (Linsfort Barney-Hazy Rebel). Earlier in the day, Paddy also won the Foal Championship with his filly foal, Brocklodge Princess (Brocklodge Buster-Loughmore Suzy).
Lisa Donnan from Northern Ireland took the small mare class for the third year in a row with Up To You de l’Aulne (Clifden de l’Aulne-Bailen de Kergroas).
Whilst the Young Handler’s class was small, it was great to see such well turned out ponies and handlers and there is no doubt that these young people will go on into the senior classes. We have already watched some of the earlier young handlers go on and become winners in senior classes.
This year the winner of the MCPB Five Counties Combined Class was Felim Finnegan with Gorrynagowna Lady (Matchmakers Lad-Gypsy Joe) and her foal. It was a small class this year. Hazelrock Aris (Currachmore Cashel-Hazelrock Rua) owned by Ruth Rogers stood second and the yellow went to Noel Flynn with Buttermilk Teagan (Grange Merlin Surf-Buttermilk Melody).
The performance classes kicked off at 9 am and there was a very full schedule. The MCPB Ridden Connemara Champion was Jackie Hockley’s Hazel Boy (Killaloe Buchaill Mor-Hazey Venture) and Reserve went to Creganna Belle (Fredericksminde Hazy Match-Prospect Suzy), owned by Marjorie Hardiman.
Winner of the Sarah Miller Future Performance Pony was Agharanny Minstrel (Castleside JJ-Silver Mist) owned by Noreen O’Connor.
An innovation this year was the side saddle class and it was quite spectacular to see the four ponies lined up and then do their lap of honour. The winner of this class was Mary Kavanagh’s General Rossalougha (General Humbert-White Heather).
The day was rounded off by a very pleasant dinner at the Mullingar Park Hotel hosted by our main sponsors Willows Ingredients Limited. Thank you so much Carmelia and David for your hospitality – it is great to sit down with like minded people and talk about the day.
Before the evening ended, MCPB Chairman, Sean Cooney, made presentations to the new MCPB President and his wife, George and Mary Ledwith.
2016 Stallion Parade
After an absence for the last few years, Midlands Connemara Pony Breeders held an outstanding stallion parade with 14 stallions on show at the Mullingar Equestrian Centre on Sunday, 10th April. Innovatively, the Parade was preceded by a yearling colt and filly class where rosettes and prizes were presented by Mary and George Ledwith. George has recently taken over the role on MCPB President. The judge for these two classes was Danny Molloy.
Stallions in the Order They Paraded
Yearling Colt Class
Yearling Filly Class