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O'Connor pips Porter to Grand Prix in Slovakia showdown

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Cian O'Connor. Photo: Seb Daly/Sportsfile

Cian O'Connor. Photo: Seb Daly/Sportsfile

SPORTSFILE

Cian O'Connor. Photo: Seb Daly/Sportsfile

Victory for Cian O'Connor and PSG Final in yesterday's 4-Star Grand Prix at Samorin in Slovakia capped a great weekend for Irish showjumpers.

The Meath rider pinned America's Wilton Porter into the runner-up spot in a 12-horse jump-off.

O'Connor, who turns 40 next month, was one of the side that won the Longines Nations Cup Final earlier this month, clinching a team qualifying spot for Ireland at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

On Saturday night, Derry's Daniel Coyle (24) pipped Kilkenny's Richie Moloney (37) for the honours in the 2-Star Lugano Diamonds Grand Prix at Tryon in North Carolina.

Wexford's Bertram Allen posted a double of wins, including the 5-Star Sunday Classic, at the same venue in the United States the previous weekend.

Target

At the World Cup qualifier in Helsinki yesterday both Eoin McMahon (24) and Denis Lynch (43) qualified for the eight-horse jump-off in which McMahon set the target with four faults at the bogey blue wall in a time of 40.97 seconds.

However Lynch's horse, the 13-year-old gelding GC Chopin's Bushi, declined to take part in the competition second time out.

The Tipperary man was obliged to retire, which left him lying eighth in the class of 37 starters in Finland.

The competition was won by Great Britain's Robert Whitaker and Catwalk, while Spain's Sergio Alvarez Moya finished second with Jet Run. The bogey wall created drama in both rounds, taking out many of the most-fancied contenders including World No 1 Steve Guerdat from Switzerland.

Irish Independent