Farm Ireland

Friday 22 September 2017

Connemaras to take centre stage at Clifden

The annual Connemara Pony Festival will run in Clifden from Monday, August 16 to Sunday, August 22.

The highlight of the week, the Connemara Pony Show, takes place on the Thursday.

Now in its 87th year, the show attracts visitors from all over Ireland, as well as Connemara enthusiasts from Europe, America, Australia and even South Africa.

The week begins with an educational seminar in the National Park in Letterfrack at 3pm. The National Park is home to the Connemara Pony Breeders' Society's herd of Connemara ponies and visitors will be able to view the herd.

Tuesday will have an international theme, with the international AGM and international conference taking place in the Station House Hotel at 1pm, followed by the international reception at the Abbeyglen Castle Hotel on Tuesday evening.

On Wednesday, 32 three-year-old ponies will compete in the loose jumping competition at the showgrounds at 2pm, all aiming for the title of Champion Loose Jumping Connemara Pony.

The show on Thursday will include 24 in-hand classes and 10 ridden classes, starting at 8.30am.

For the first time, the stallion class will be split in two with one class for four, five and six-year-olds and another class for stallions aged seven years and over.

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The Connemara pony is recognised worldwide for its unique performance ability and the Connemara Performance Show on Friday is designed to showcase the breed's talent.

This includes the Puissance competition, working hunter classes, musical ride and parade of all the champions of the show.

The Connemara pony sales will take place in Clifden Mart on Saturday and Sunday, commencing at 11am each day.

For more details, visit the Connemara Pony Breeders' Society website or contact the CPBS office on 095 21863.

Irish Independent