Tuesday 27 September 2016

O'Connor shines as Ireland finish fifth

Louise Parkes

Published 28/09/2015 | 02:30

O’Connor produced a breathtaking round from the nine-year-old stallion Good Luck which drew gasps of appreciation from the crowd with his spectacular clear round
O’Connor produced a breathtaking round from the nine-year-old stallion Good Luck which drew gasps of appreciation from the crowd with his spectacular clear round

Ireland took fifth place in the gripping Furusiyya Nations Cup Final won by Belgium in Barcelona on Saturday night, with Cian O'Connor's horse, Good Luck, producing a spectacular performance.

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And Irish team member Denis Lynch scooped €50,500 when the Tipperary native claimed yesterday's Longines Grand Prix at the Spanish fixture with All Star.

With €1.5m on offer, the top eight teams from Thursday's first round started on a zero score in Saturday night's Nations Cup finale, and Lynch led the Irish effort with an eight-fault result.

Robert Splaine fielded the full side that captured the Aga Khan Cup at the Dublin Horse Show last month and Greg Broderick was next in with MHS Going Global which hit the vertical at fence eight.

Bertram Allen's Molly Malone then left two on the floor and the Irish were looking very vulnerable until O'Connor produced a breathtaking round from the nine-year-old stallion Good Luck which drew gasps of appreciation from the crowd with his spectacular clear round.

Ireland shared a 12-fault total with USA and Germany, but with time taken into account, slotted in behind the Americans and ahead of the Germans while the much-fancied Dutch lined up third behind the British who produced a faster eight-fault total. Counting just a single mistake, the Belgians claimed the 2015 title.

In yesterday's Longines Grand Prix, the top 18 went into the jump-off and Lynch and Allen qualified on a zero score.

But while Allen had a fence down in a fast time, Lynch's was the undisputed winner with 11 seconds of an advantage over runner-up Santiago Lambre from Mexico.

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