The recent re-opening (at full capacity) of the nightclubs in the country will surely not have toooo much of an impact on attendance at our own club events. Lets face it, most of us have left our night-clubbing days behind us and traded glad-rags for gum-boots quite a while ago. Our younger members no doubt have the energy and capacity to juggle all kinds of clubbing with flair and panache. Certainly, if Chloe McClafferty’s performance in the NWRC league on Sunday is anything to go by, the club honour is in safe hands with our youth. Tirconaill riding club hosted the second, and penultimate, leg of the league at Charlie and Mona Vial’s Drumanoo Equestrian. To say the weather gods were kind would be an under statement. As Charlie commented “The child of Prague worked nicely” and a reasonably mild day held dry till the final competitors finished up. Mona and her band of merry helpers had put on a spread of epic proportions. Anyone who has experienced Mona’s home baking will have some idea of the caliber of catering on offer to the competitors and their sidekicks and its safe to say that anyone who headed home hungry did it of their own choice.
The competition on the day was quite fierce, with a good showing from most of the clubs in the region. Most unusually Inishowen had no winners on the day, though Samantha, Lynne and Dawn made sure the other clubs had to work for their points. Once again we were deprived of the Donegal Gaeltachts on the score sheets and even the powerful Stracomer club had to yield to the might of the home team. Fortunately our own Chloe McClafferty managed to stop a complete rout when she won the advanced primary class on the ever-green Bacardi, but apart from throwing some minor placings to their neighbors the Tirconaill team had a magnificent day. The award for the most entertaining round of the day should probably go to Rachel Carton in the advanced intermediate jump-off. Having sat on like a prune on the approach to the first she paid the price by allowing Merlin an easy dodge out the side…he apparently didn’t think it would be gentlemanly to jump whilst relieving himself…and had to throw caution to the wind to try and make up time. Sure reins are over-rated at the best of times. Results and some entertaining video below.
The final leg of the league is being held in the stunning venue of Necarne Castle in Irvinestown, on the 14th of November, and is being jointly run by Stracomer and Donegal Gaeltacht riding clubs. The day should appeal to all riders as there will also be a dressage competition on the day. The dressage is not part of the league and placings in the dressage do not count towards league points. Showjumping will be held in the magnificent walled garden arena while the dressage will be in the rose garden arena. As an added bonus we have also got access to the estate for hacking on the day so even those of you who would just like to go for an off-road rideout have a good reason to load up and join in the fun. It promises to be a great day, with the added attraction of a tea/coffee van on site to keep the cold at bay. This will probably be the final get together for all the clubs in the region this year as the decision not to hold a dinner dance was taken earlier in the autumn.
Closer to home, and in an effort to up our game at these inter-club competitions, we have jumping lessons in Greenacres Equestrian Centre on a Thursday evening. Sonya McAleer is coaching and booking is via our club whatsapp group.