Holstein and Sambuca prove to be a potent mix in Cavan
Heike Holstein was crowned Irish National Dressage Champion for a phenomenal 13th time at the Slieve Bloom Stud Dressage Ireland National Championships in Cavan Equestrian Centre on Saturday.
The 47-year-old from Carbury in Kildare was a member of the side that sealed Ireland's first Olympic team slot when joined by Judy Reynolds, Anna Merveldt and Kate Dwyer at last month's European Championships in Rotterdam.
The three-time Olympian, who won her first national title at Powerscourt in Wicklow in 1990, and who took a 13-year career-break to raise her family before returning to the top end of the sport two years ago, steered her home-bred mare, Sambuca, to the winning score of 68.043. Rising star Rachel Dowley slotted into runner-up spot on a mark of 62.772, riding Cadens.
In showjumping, Tipperary's Denis Lynch (43) scooped €50,000 when runner-up in the Land Rover Grand Prix at Waregem in Belgium yesterday. Riding Rubens LS La Silla, he finished over two seconds off the winning time set by World No 1 rider Steve Guerdat from Switzerland who scorched through the timers in 38.26 seconds with his FEI World Cup winning ride, Alamo.
At Sentower Park in Opglabbeek, Belgium, Ireland's John McEntee (Little Smithy), Ryan Sweetnam (Perseus Spartacus), Ella Quigley (Rock Dee Jay) and Rhys Williams (K Little Hero) finished third in the Pony Nations Cup on a total of six faults.