Farm Ireland

Monday 22 January 2018

'Breeding now is very different to 20 years or 10 years ago, when Irish horses were making good money'

Ballycreen Rainbow Magic was crowned reserve supreme in the UK
Ballycreen Rainbow Magic was crowned reserve supreme in the UK
Siobhan English

Siobhan English

For over 30 years, David and Judith Cosby have been breeding both traditional Irish sport horses and Irish draughts with much success.

Their finest moment as breeders came in October 2016 when Ballycreen Rainbow Magic was crowned reserve supreme in the Cuddy In-Hand Championship at the Horse of the Year Show in the UK.

It was a magical moment for the couple who have supported the Irish breed through thick and thin. "Breeding now is very different to 20 years ago or 10 years ago, when Irish horses were making good money," says David. "Now you can barely cover your costs."

By Kings Master, Ballycreen Rainbow Magic comes from a wonderful family, tracing back to their foundation mare Old Grange Lady, by the ID sire King of Diamonds. When covered by the thoroughbred Mythical Sprite, Old Grange Lady produced Psyche, the dam of both My Faery Fae and Ballycreen Nanoschka, amongst others.

My Faery Fae went on to produce the Orbis mare Ballycreen Susianna, dam of Ballycreen Rainbow Magic, who this year will be produced under saddle for owner Martin Wood. Kings Master has certainly been a successful sire of choice for many years and David and Judith have enjoyed following the progress of many others who started their life at their farm in Wicklow.

Ballycreen Nanoschka's most prolific offspring is Ballycreen Anouschka who has produced a litany of winners on both sides of the Atlantic.

By Orbis, now 16, her foals by Kings Master include the eventers Ballycreen Milord and Ballycreen Kings Orbit, and top show horse Ballycreen His Lordship, the latter two being Gold For Gold graduates.

Another is Ballycreen Tushie, whose first foal by Pointilliste is expected to debut on the British eventing scene this summer.

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Last year, Ballycreen Tushie produced a colt by the thoroughbred Nazar and he is among a handful of youngstock currently in residence and on the market. "We also have a two-year-old full-brother and yearling full-sister to 'Magic' here and both are also for sale," David adds.

In addition to returning to the hunting field of late, in the past three years, David has also been in the winner's circle in endurance at the Laois Branch Irish Draught Show with Ballycreen Minerva (by Rebel Mountain).

"Minerva is the next generation of a long line of Irish draughts we have had here and she will never be sold. The same goes for her dam Artemis, whose progeny also include Ballycreen Apollo, who was well placed in his class at Dublin last year," says David.

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