Category Archives: Showing

Beach Show 2013 Schedule – the countdown begins

On a day when the prospects for our own Derby & Dressage Show this Sunday look decidedly gloomy, it’s nice to have the schedule of the Gaeltacht’s Beach Show on Sunday 2 June to brighten things up. It’s a familiar looking line up of classes so we’re guaranteed an absolutely brilliant day of competition and fun.

Beach Show 2013 Schedule

This is one of the highlights of the riding club year. Everybody who has been to the event in the past knows that it’s not to be missed and every new member should mark it firmly in their diaries in indelible ink. The show takes place in the unique setting of Ballyness Bay in Falcarragh with acres and acres of beach for warming up and a whole extra strand just at the back of the imposing sandunes, just in case your horse needs a break from competitive action.

Although there will be no showing at the Beach Show this year, there’s a first-rate schedule of show jumping and dressage classes. Enjoy looking forward to the big day!

Pictured below: Beach Show memories from 2013. See the Gallery for more.


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Non-stop riding club activity for coming months

Last week’s club meeting painted a very rich picture of competitive and non-competitive activity for members — most of it on our doorstep. It’s difficult to find space for our regular Friday activities in a calendar over-flowing with shows and events. In summery, this is what we have to look forward to:

National Hunter Trials, Gurteen College
Seven or eight members have set their sights on the AIRC National Hunter Trials at Gurteen College on Sunday 14 April. Foot soldiers are guaranteed a good time at the event and last year the club had a mighty band of non-riding supporters cheering our (very successful) competitors home. Finding schooling opportunities before the event is always somewhat tricky. Mona of Tirconaill has organised a session at Castle Leslie on Saturday 6 April and, weather permitting, competitors will also have an opportunity to school over Gabriel’s course closer to home.

Northwest Team Challenge — Show Jumping & Dressage
The pride of the club will be at stake on Sunday 28 April as we take on our friends and rivals from neighbouring clubs in both show jumping and dressage team challenges. Our aim is to field as many teams as possible on the day. You can choose to do either dressage or show jumping or — better still — both. Rules for the Challenge will be finalised shortly. Vera will coordinate the dressage teams and Francis will do the same for the show jumpers. Entries will need to be made in advance of the big day.

Derby & Dressage Show
John, Rachel and Louise made the mistake of not attending the meeting and landed themselves the job of coordinating our Derby & Dressage show on Sunday 12 May at Hillsborough Farm. They will schedule a meeting to organise manoeuvres in advance. Course building and general prep will take place on Friday 10 May. We’ve made a club decision to buy rustic and white poles in an effort to improve the “derby” character of the event. We hope to have a really good entry at the show so make sure your horse is fit and you clear your calendar of all other commitments! We need members riding — we’re not short of help on the ground! A derby is a very achievable competition. The course is longer than a standard jumping course and about half of the fences will have a natural or rustic character. You’ll find your horse loves it and the exhilaration of jumping on grass is unbeatable.

Regional Dressage Qualifier
Vera is coordinating the club effort to field a team at the regional team dressage qualifier at Dalysgrove near Ballinasloe on Sunday 19 May. A strong cohort of committed riders including Claire Kelly, Hazel, Vera and Anne Chambers plan to make the event. It’s a very long journey for a qualifier and their commitment is admirable. Anybody who’s interested in joining this group should contact Vera.

Team Show Jumping Qualifier
The RDS qualifier takes place at Kerins’s in Collooney, just short of Sligo, on Sunday 26 May. The tension and excitement of this competition is unique. Last year we didn’t field a team but this year it looks like we have plenty of candidates and barrowloads of enthusiasm. Contact Francis as early as possible, if you’re interested in competing. We’re entitled to enter two teams and further teams are possible at the discretion of the organisers.

Beach Show
The June Bank Holiday weekend brings one of the highlights of the year — the Gaeltacht’s Beach Show. Say no more. Don’t miss it.

Riding Clubs Festival, Stradbally
Last year nobody from the club travelled to the Festival. This year Libby hopes to make the journey and maybe one or two others will also head for the largest amateur riding event in the land. Entries close far in advance of the show so keep an eye on the AIRC site, if you are thinking of going on the adventure. The Festival features a vast range of dressage, showing and show jumping classes.

Inishowen Riding Club Show
Good for Inishowen: barely six months out of the blocks and they’re jumping in at the deep end with a show on Sunday 16 June. Make a huge effort to get out and support them. Our experience could be a great help to them and there’s probably lots we can do to help them out with the running of the event.

As a respite from the competitive side of life, we have ride-outs planned in different parts of our territory. Anne, Leo and Hazel will guide us along routes ranging from Burt to Stranorlar to Kilmacrennan. There’s nothing nicer than ending the week with a sociable ride-out on our long spring and summer evenings. Note that riders are now going to contribute €5 on each ride-out evening. This will help support the occasional tuition evenings where numbers are too low to cover costs and allow us to continue our flat rate €15 price for lessons.

Cross country evenings
June will see us out for some informal cross country schooling on Friday evenings. We hope to visit Audrey and Tanya in Castleshanaghan and Marina and Enda in St Johnston. You don’t even have to like jumping for these sessions — you might be just as happy riding around the big fields and enjoying the open country on the flat. Your horse will certainly love it!

So, no shortage of activity and events over the coming months. Make sure you get out and make the most of it all. Let’s hope the weather plays along!

The Beach Show stays (almost) dry as God spares the Gaeltacht

This weekend saw the second attempt at the 2012 Beach Show and, just like our Stranorlar ride-out, the Gaeltacht’s luck held when it really mattered. A lot of determined riders made their way to Ballyness Bay despite a less than convincing forecast and were rewarded for their faith by a great show in comparatively perfect conditions.

With the PA system only reaching a small portion of the sandy show ground, many of the results were lost to the wind as they were announced from HQ at the main jumping arena. They’ll filter through on the official Donegal Gaeltacht wavelength sooner rather than later.

Between the grapevine, a few eye-witness reports and the shreds of official announcements that filtered through the breeze we know that our wonderful pair of greys, Lizzie under Paddy and Cormac on Charlotte, crowned a great day with a cracking win in the Intermediate & Above Speed Pairs. Cormac was still dealing with the adrenalin rush as he packed up for home and Paddy was observed driving dreamily through the hills on the way back to Letterkenny, reliving every twist and turn of his victorious round. Well done all four of you.

Letterkenny filled the top three spots in the Advanced Intermediate show jumping class with Nadine producing the only clear round of the competition. Damien took second place with Cormac in third. Marina bypassed the competition as Jenny stumbled in her warm-up and favoured a foreleg. In the dressage area, Maura suffered similar poor luck with Hannah just as she completed her warm-up. Hopefully both mares will make a quick recovery.

One of the club’s former walking wounded, Fenway, enjoyed his day in the limelight when he won both the Intermediate dressage and the Medium & Heavyweight Hunter Class. There was no sign of any of his ligament or navicular problems as he then stretched out in gallop before the judges to pip Cathriona Goaley’s lovely Connemara, Curra Whoopi, for the overall Showing Championship.

The rest of the results will surface shortly. If there are any photographs, send them through. For now enjoy the small collection in the Gallery.

Pictured below: Maura on Hannah, cheerful despite the disappointment of missing her test. Get well soon, Hannah. And our trio of Advanced Intermediate campaigners, Cormac, Damien and Nadine on Charlotte, Millie and Molly.

Schedule and notes for Beach Show, Sunday 29 July

Next Sunday sees the rescheduled Beach Show return to Ballyness Bay in Falcarragh. The weather is so unsteady these days that it makes no sense to predict the conditions, but they could hardly be as bad as they were for the original show date!

Donegal Gaeltacht Beach Show 2012

The Gaeltachts have asked visitors to note the following:
The tide will be fully in at approximately 3:30pm, and will be touching the rocks just past the entrance for a little while. This means that access will be restricted around that time, though vehicles will still be able to drive over the rocks – the choice is yours.  The tide will not affect parking or the operation of the show.

Looking forward to the Beach Show : Schedule

A short blast of sunshine is all that’s needed to lift the spirits and make the prospect of the Donegal Gaeltacht’s famous Beach Show a real delight. Here’s the full schedule of events. Lots to look forward to.

Donegal Gaeltacht Beach Show | 29 July | Schedule

Beach Show, Sunday 13 May

Here’s the schedule — great as always. Now all we need is the weather for it!

Donegal Gaeltacht Beach Show 2012 · Schedule

Reminder: Closing date for festival entries is fast approaching

A quick reminder that anybody who’s planning on competing at the Riding Clubs Festival at Stradbally on Saturday 9 and Sunday 10 June needs to have their entries in by Thursday 19 April (postal) or 3pm on Tuesday 1 May (online).

Riding Clubs Festival · Schedule 2012

Key Gaeltacht dates now set in stone

The Donegal Gaeltachts had a club meeting last night and have firmed up a number of dates that will be of great interest to our members:

Monday 9 April (Easter Monday) — Rideout in Falcarragh
Open to everyone, adults and kids of all ages and abilities. It will start at Manus Kelly’s (near the beach) as one group and split soon after. The lead-rein/non-canter group will loop back around Falcarragh and will have the opportunity to do another section after a break. The other group will head for the hills and the old railway lines. There will be a BBQ afterwards and an opportunity to go to the beach. Exact details will follow soon.

Sunday 13 May — Beach Show
To include show jumping, dressage and showing.

Sunday 1 July — Inter-club Cross-Jump in Falcarragh

Opportunities for hunters without the hunt

The increasingly popular show hunter division of our sport will be active over the coming weeks. On Sunday 26 February Greenacres EC in Convoy host their annual Winter Hunter Show, a qualifying event for the Northern Ireland Festival in Cavan. The programme includes both working hunter and show hunter classes. Full details on their Greenacres Winter Hunter Show schedule.

A week later on Saturday 3 March, The North West Working Hunter Association are holding another of their league shows at Eglinton. For full details, check the NWWHA website.

Working hunter activity with the Tirconaills

Working hunter classes will soon be vying with actual hunting for popularity, albeit amongst a somewhat different crowd. The ongoing NWWHA league in Coleraine switches venue to Eglinton after Christmas which is good news for anybody from our area who wants to give it a shot.

And it’s great to see that our neighbours in Tirconaill Riding Club are hosting a working hunter and showing demonstration with highly-acclaimed coach and showing expert, Toni Donnelly. (Many of you will remember that Erica organised a very successful working hunter day with Toni at Cyril’s last year.)

The event will be held in Deane’s Equestrian Centre in Bruckless on Wednesday, 7 December at 7.30pm. Toni will finish the evening with  a Q&A session.  Admission is €10 adults, €5 child/student. If you are interested please text/call Brenda on 087 631 7425 so that adequate seating can be arranged.

There will also be a Working Hunter Show in Deane’s EC on Sunday 11 December.