Thursday 18 December 2014

Born in the RDS: Springsteen's girl ready to go in horse show

Emma Jane Hade

Published 06/08/2014 | 02:30

Jessica Kuehnle (15) alongside her brother Brian (10) and sister Jennifer (12), all from Co Laois, with her horse Fly Leigh at the RDS yesterday.
Jessica Kuehnle (15) alongside her brother Brian (10) and sister Jennifer (12), all from Co Laois, with her horse Fly Leigh at the RDS yesterday.
Team USA rider Jessica Springsteen pictured before the start of the Dublin Horse Show at the RDS .

It is one of the capital's oldest and most cherished traditions, and the Royal Dublin Society Horse Show is ready for its 141st year.

More than 1,300 horses and ponies will compete in 125 different competitions and classes over the five-day event which starts today.

Leading riders from all over the world were busy preparing for the event yesterday in the hope of landing a slice of the lucrative prize money.

Eight nations will be represented in the battle for the coveted Aga Khan trophy in the RDS on Friday, the highlight of the equine competition, with standing room only at ringside.

Jessica Springsteen, the 22-year-old daughter of legendary US rock star Bruce - who is in Dublin to watch Jessica - will also be taking to the hallowed turf in the RDS as she competes with Team USA.

The RDS is a home from home for her dad who has played sold-out shows there on 11 occasions.

She told the Irish Independent that she was busy getting ready for the competition, and was due to bring her beloved jumper out for a "jog" in the venue yesterday afternoon.

Among the internationally renowned riders in the RDS was Olympic medallist Cian O'Connor and the 34-year-old said that it is one of his favourite competitions to participate in. "It is certainly a goal of mine every year, so I look forward to it," he said. "With this show, the two parts that really make it are the exhibitors and the public, and there are great riders and horses here all week."

At least 100,000 visitors are expected to attend the show, which is estimated to be worth €43m to the economy.

RDS chief executive Michael Duffy projects that 40pc of these will come from outside the equine world, adding that "there is a great resonance for the Horse Show with Irish people".

Ladies Day tomorrow will be one of the highlights as 400 glamorous women are expected to compete for an €8,000 trip to New York.

Irish Independent

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