Equestrian: Fitzpatrick rocks to victory in arezzo
Susan Fitzpatrick claimed a decisive victory in the individual Jumping final at the European Pony Championships in Arezzo, Italy.
Riding Rock Dee Jay, the 11-year-old gelding son of the great Arko III, the Irishwoman produced one of just three double-clears on the final afternoon to take the gold, adding nothing to the four penalty points she carried into this last competition of the 2013 Championships while others faulted.
It took a thrilling five-way jump-off to decide silver and bronze, and it was 2012 individual champion Millie Allen from Britain who claimed runner-up spot with Song Girl, and Denmark's Jessica Toelstang and Nikolina in third.
Fitzpatrick registered Ireland's fifth-ever gold medal winning result in the 27-year history of the Pony Championships. Bertram Allen last took the individual title with Acapella Z in 2010.
Ireland's eventers also followed in the hoofprints of their jumping counterparts when taking team bronze.
Shannon Nelson (Millridge Buachaill Bui), Lucy Latta (Nono), Donnacha O'Brien (Ice Cool Bailey) and Nessa Briody (Rathnaleen Dark Secret) moved up the placings during the day's proceedings to edge out Italy and clinch bronze, behind France (silver) and Britain ( gold).