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Thursday 8 December 2016

All roads lead to Carlow for Schools Hunter Trials

Published 06/01/2016 | 02:30

Bertram Allen with school principal Linda Dunne and students from Colaiste Bhride at the launch of the Schools Hunter Trials
Bertram Allen with school principal Linda Dunne and students from Colaiste Bhride at the launch of the Schools Hunter Trials

Some 500 students from more than 100 schools across Ireland will gather at Lisgarvan House in Ballon, Co Carlow on March 12 next for the Holmestead All Ireland Schools' Hunter Trials.

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The event is to be sponsored by Holmestead Saddlery and Wriggle, the leading mobile learning specialist for schools in Ireland.

Just before Christmas Irish international show jumper Bertram Allen took time out of his busy schedule to launch the competition which will be hosted for the first time by Colaiste Bhride in Carnew.

School principal Linda Dunne was delighted that the young rider could attend this special launch.

"To have achieved so much in one so young is an inspiring and wonderful triumph," she said.

"We have watched his swift progress with interest and we are very grateful for Bertram to take time out of his busy international schedule to launch this important competition. We look forward to seeing more young hopefuls follow his footsteps and go on to compete at national and international levels."

The school, which next year will celebrate its 80th anniversary, has a strong equestrian tradition as befits its largely rural community.

In recent years the school's equestrian teams have competed in Hickstead in the UK, and have won multiple titles in the inter-schools show jumping here at home.

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The All-Ireland Schools' Hunter Trials was conceived in the early 1980s, with the first event being hosted by CBS New Ross.

The competition stayed in the New Ross area for the next 10 years, with Laurel Hill Limerick travelling some distance and winning on three separate occasions. By 1986 a national association was established (NAST).

The event soon became national and over the next 29 years was hosted by schools in Kilkenny, Tipperary, Westmeath, Limerick, Waterford, Wexford, Carlow, Dublin and Laois.

Entry details for the 2016 renewal can be obtained from cbcarnew.ie and equestrianinterschools.com.

Bertram Allen with school principal Linda Dunne and students from Colaiste Bhride at the launch of the Schools Hunter Trials

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