Co Meath’s Edward Butler claimed victory the final round of the H.S.I/Connolly's RED MILLS Spring Tour at Coilog in Co Kildare, after a thrilling jump off round with Caugherty, while for the third year in a row Daniel Coyle was crowned Spring Tour league Champion.
A high quality field of sixty-seven horses and riders went to post and a large group of seventeen went forward to the jump off with Butler and Angela Taggart’s Caugherty,(Limmerick x Flagmount Diamond) scoring a convincing win at the finish, their time of 36.13 seconds left them with over a second to spare over their nearest challenger.
Speaking after the competition which was sponsored by Coilog Eventing Ltd, Edward Butler said,
“It was as strong course today very technical, which wasn’t surprising considering it was the final round and with Louth County Show coming up next week. I am delighted for Caugherty’s owner Angela Taggart, the mare was off for a while last year with a minor injury, but she is back in great form now. My plan is to compete in the premiere series starting at Louth and hopefully get enough points to qualify for the Dublin Horse Show in August".
Another Meath based rider, Olympic bronze medallist Cian O Connor, took runner up spot with the eight year old gelding Saphir (Salito x Escudo I) who is owned by Canadian Nicole Walker, O Connor finishing as one of six double clear rounds in the competition, stopping the clock in 37.41 seconds.
Army rider Captain Geoff Curran slotted into third place, the Co Waterford native was aboard the Minister for Defence’s Shannondale Rahona (Ghyvan Z x Cavalier Royale), finishing just ahead of Sophie Dalm, a clear round in 39.91 seconds saw her finish in fourth place overall and as the leading young rider of the competition.
Cian O Connor was back in the prizes again taking fifth place with Cooper 81(Colman x Corrado I), just ahead of Edward Doyle Junior who finished sixth with Mullaghdrin Touch The Stars (Touchdown x Irco Mena).
Daniel Coyle Crowned 2014 Horse Sport Ireland/Connolly's RED MILLS Spring Tour Champion
Not surprisingly Daniel Coyle and Uptown Girl posted the fastest time of the class (36.03), but one fence down for the speed specialists saw them finish in seventh, although Coyle would still have been smiling all the way back to Derry after he was officially crowned the 2014 Horse Sport Ireland/Connolly's RED MILLS Spring Tour champion.
His incredibly consistent run of four Spring Tour wins and three third place finishes this year, contributing to what is now three Spring Tour league title wins in as many years. Daniel Coyle’s incredible achievement is all the more remarkable considering that the northerner is still in the young rider rankings.
Coyle was pushed all the way however by league runner up, Thomas O Brien from Galway, who ensured the overall title still hung in the balance heading into the final weekend, while Conor McEneaney also produced some excellent results to eventually finish third overall.
Another hugely successful Spring Tour comes to a close with huge credit due to all involved and at this stage few would bet against Daniel Coyle making it four in a row in 2015!
The Horse Sport Ireland/Connollys RED MILLS Spring Tour, is also supported by the Show Jumpers Club, ShowjumpingIreland, Castlefield Sport Horses, Thermatex, Platinum by Harry Dabbs, Darragh Equestrian Solutions, and Jumpinaction.net.
Horse Sport Ireland/Connolly's RED MILLS Spring Tour, Final League Standings following Round 15 - Coilog 21/04/2014
Daniel Coyle 74.5 points
Thomas O Brien 55
Conor McEneaney 37
Liam O Meara 29
James Hogg 27
Gerard Clarke 27
FULL RESULT - Horse Sport Ireland/Connolly's RED MILLS Spring Tour, Final Round, Coilog Co Kildare 21/04/2014, Sponsored by Coilog Eventing Ltd
1st Edward Butler/Caugherty 0/0 36.13
2nd Cian O'Connor/Saphir 0/0 37.41
3rd Capt. Geoff Curran/Shannondale Rahona 0/0 38.81
4th Sophie Dalm/Unique 0/0 39.91
5th Cian O'Connor/Cooper 81 0/0 40.15
6th Edward Doyle Jnr/Mullaghdrin Touch The Stars 0/0 43.25
7th Daniel Coyle/Uptown Girl 0/4 36.03
8th Daniel Coyle/Zuidam 0/4 36.63
9th Nicholas Butler/Beauty Van De Panneberg Hoeve 0/4 37.22
10th Kellie Allen/Cara Touche 0/4 37.92
17 into Jump Off
Highest Placed Young Rider - Sophie Dalm
Best Turned Out - Tztargazer - Declan Egan
Winning Owner - Angela Taggart
Daniel Coyle from Co Derry is the overall 2014 Horse Sport Ireland/Connolly's RED MILLS Spring Tour champion
Thomas O Brien from Co Galway is the 2014 Horse Sport Ireland/Connolly's RED MILLS Spring Tour runner up