Round-up of weekend Equestrian action

Updated: Sunday, 21 Oct 2012 20:08

Cian O'Connor finished fourth in the French Grand Prix at Caen on the first outing with his Olympic horse Blue Loyd since the Dublin Horse Show in August.

O'Connor, who was himself coming off a trio of recent Grand Prix wins in Cavan, Beijing, and Eglinton, was one of eleven riders who made it through to the jump-off at the three-star competition today.

However, a fence down in the final round left him adrift of Brazilian winner Rodrigo Pessoa and HH Ashley.

The Meath-based rider said afterwards: "I was thrilled with Blue Loyd's performance today, and it sets him up well for the upcoming World Cup shows in Lyon and Verona. I think I'm getting the hang of the horse in the jump-offs now, and I anticipate a major Grand Prix win for him in the near future."

O'Connor also saw his stable rider Ross Mulholland win the Caen two-star final with Da Vinci's Pride.

Elsewhere, Meath’s Gerard Clarke won the two-star Grand Prix at 's-Gravenwezel in Belgium on the Irish Sport Horse Ardragh Stein, with fellow Irish rider Sven Hadley picking up a fifth place on Adelgonde Z.

The 21-year-old victor from Ballivor, who is still in the Young Rider category, finished with almost one-and-a-half seconds in hand when seeing off a challenge by Brazilian star Carlos Ribas and Ronaldo, who had to settle for the runner-up spot at the end of the 12 horse jump-off.

Ireland's Ivan Dalton also scored a win at the Belgian show, finishing first in the Two Phase competition with Pocento du Temple.

Meanwhile, Cork's Shane Sweetnam was awarded the Leading Rider Trophy at the two-star show in Harrisburg, USA when he took two victories, as well as a third place in the weekend's World Cup qualifier.

The 31 year-old, who is now based in Florida, rode Spy Coast Farm's stallion Amaretto Darco in Saturday night's World Cup class, and was one of nine through to the jump off.

However, Sweetnam found himself outpaced in the final round by the US riders Kent Farrington with Uceko, who took the trophy, and Katie Dinan with Nougat du Vallet, who finished second.

The Cork rider's third place followed a win in the Accumulator class on Cyklon and a first place with Solerina in the speed competition.

In 's-Gravenwezel in Belgium, Ireland's Gerard Clarke won the two-star Grand Prix with the Irish Sport Horse Ardragh Stein, with Sven Hadley picking up a fifth place on Adelgonde Z.

At the three star show at Odense in Denmark, Shane Carey took fifth place with Ballymore Eustace in the Two Phase competition, with victory going to Germany's Marcus Ehning and Campbel 2.

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