It’s official

Our annual North West Riding Clubs autumn league is officially launched. With just eleven days to fine tune your showjumping skills (or at the very least to dust off your memory of what showjumping is) I’m sure the excitement will be building. Details are available on the promotional poster below.

The day before the first leg of the league is the Donegal Harriers pre-season charity rideout at Herby Lusby’s lovely Porthall. Proceeds are in aid of the Irish Injured Jockeys fund, which Marina Hamilton has been working tirelessly for. In her own words, Marina says “I want to make a difference. I’m inspired by the work of the Irish Injured Jockeys and wanted to support them by raising money as part of my participation in The Corinthian Challenge”.

Adults €25. U18s €15.

Food will be served afterwards in “Maggies”. All jumps are optional and everyone is welcome to come along. Take part in a leisurely ride, meet a few of the hounds & help raise funds for a worthwhile cause. The rideout starts at 12.00 midday.


2-Phase league results and life moving forward…

Many thanks to Liz et al for the top class score keeping over the past league. The final results are as follows



Moving on into the autumn we have a few good events to look forward to. On the 20th of October the Donegal Harriers are running a ride out from Maggie’s Bar, Porthall/St. Johnston area, in aid of Marina’s Corinthian challenge. All proceeds from the race season go to the Irish Injured Jockeys Fund and, as a mother of two jockeys, I can assure you it is a very worthy cause. There will be optional jumps on the day and it should be very sociable.

Sunday 21st October sees the start of the North West Riding Clubs autumn showjumping league at Templemore Equestrian Centre. This league is our last chance to turn out in force and whip the other club’s asses so let’s see some concerted effort….which will be amply rewarded at the annual dinner dance at the Villa Rose hotel, Ballybofey, on Dec 1st.

Tir Conail champions as curtain comes down on 2-phase

Blustery weather and cold showers couldn’t dampen the enthusiasm evident at Gordon’s Bay as riders squared up to Liz and Ryan’s testing course at the final of the 2018 North West Riding Clubs 2-phase and dressage league.

The dressage arena, set out in their spacious sand arena, was tough to ride good tests in as riders were constantly distracted by the stunning views, but some top class performances were produced. Notable from our own club was Francis and Bonzo, who produced an outstanding performance to win the highly competitive intermediate section on the day. This pair has made great progress over the past year and are becoming a force to be reckoned with. Also showing good improvement since the Lenamore outing were Suzanne and Jack, who were just put of the ribbons and would have benefited from a fourth leg in the league. Louise and her trusty steed Bob were in great form, given that Louise hadn’t sat on him for five weeks, and rode a test befitting of the sixth place rosette on the day. Rachel and Merlin were beaten into second place on the day by Courtney and Gortahork Brid. This pair were superb throughout the league and deservedly won the overall advanced intermediate title.

The cross country proved challenging on the day, as befits a league final, and our club was lightly represented on the field. Cliff and Shyla were unable to make the date, and unfortunately missed a chance to bag some loot, but Francis and Leo took to the battlefield to fly the black and Amber flag in his stead. Unfortunately their mounts just weren’t ‘feeling it’ on the day and they both fell prey to the tricky obstacles.

Results of the third and final leg of the league are shown below

Tir Conail came out victorious as the overall league-topping club, which was well deserved given the massive turn out from this vibrant and active club.

Full league results will be published very soon but in the mean time enjoy the following albums.

2-Phase league comes down to the wire

This Sunday brings us to Liz and Ryan’s Gordons Bay for the final leg of the North West Riding Clubs 2-phase and dressage leagues. With hot weather and hard ground causing the postponement of the second leg from July (who would have ever thought I’d have to put that sentence in a website post!) we enjoyed a badly needed return to the competitive field at Lenamore on the 16th of September. Our own club ran the event in conjunction with Inishowen and I have to say that it seemed to run like clockwork. The weather played ball and, with Mona supplying sustenance in the form of some superb cake, riders enjoyed a great day. Our club had a fairly small mounted turnout on the day but those of us who were there certainly enjoyed ourselves. Results are below…

Dress results1


The fun kicks off at 11.00 this Sunday, with Bruce Vial taking to the dressage arena first. The cross country begins at 2.30 and promises to provide a fitting finale to this fun league. If you haven’t taken the plunge to compete do try to come for the social outing and to cheer everybody on.

Talking of taking the plunge…welcome to our most recent recruits who are returning to the fold. Lorna, Hilary and Kerrie are all past members who have taken the opportunity to rejoin in time for a winter of fun and games. Hopefully they’ll get as much fun from the club as everyone else who turns out to the many events organised.

Get booted and suited. The season is kicking off.

At a very productive meeting of the North West riding clubs the dates and format of the Autumn league were nailed down, as well as the (almost certain) date for our annual awards night and dinner dance.

The autumn league will consist of just three legs, so no chance of it getting stale this year, with the points from all three legs counting in the final reckoning. The final will not have double points, meaning that anyone who can’t make the final for any reason is still in with the same chance as those who miss one of the first two legs. Obviously the aim of the game is not to miss a leg at all but life does have a tendency to get in the way at times. There will be rosettes presented for first to third at each leg, with the rosettes and prizes for the overall league placings being presented at our dinner dance. The first leg will be in Templemore on the 21st Oct, followed by the second leg in Twin Towns Equestrian Centre on the 11th Nov and returning to Templemore for the final leg on the 25th Nov.

Strip off your boots and get on your suits for the 1st Dec. Mona, ably assisted by Liz, Hazel and Louise, are undertaking to organise the event and details will follow shortly.


Plans afoot

The next inter-club meeting for the north west riding clubs is on Monday 3rd September in the Glencar Inn, at 8pm. All club members are not only welcome but actively encouraged to attend the meeting and put forward suggestions for activities over the coming winter season. With the seasonal autumn league up  for discussion, as well as other sociable outings such as the annual dinner dance, it will be an entertaining gathering. If you cant make the meeting on Monday do try to get in touch with some of our club members who will be going and give them your input. All thoughts and opinions will be taken on board.

As you will have seen from Hazel’s texts we have the next leg of the 2-phase league to organise on the 16th September. With very few remaining opportunities for getting outdoor competition over the rest of the year I hope you’ll all support this event. As always we need asses in saddles as well as hands on deck!

If you haven’t enough in the club calender to keep you busy you might like to stretch your legs at some of the upcoming events at Eglinton…




For the dressage divas

We don’t get many chances to compete remotely locally in dressage so it’s great to see North Coast Riding Club running dressage competition in Eglinton. Get the contact information st this link

Lots of opportunities to get out and about.

The summer competition season is slowly drawing to a close but there are still plenty of chances to get out and try your hand at a variety of both AIRC and non-riding club events in the area, and farther afield.

First and foremost we have the next leg of the Two Phase League, which has been re scheduled for Sunday 16th September in Lenamore EC. This event is strictly pre entry and pre pay via club secretary, Hazel . Entries need to be with Hazel by Friday 7th September. Dressage tests on schedule below . Please remember that our club is running this event in conjunction with the Inishowen club, so help will be needed on and before the day.

At national level we have the AIRC eventing championships rapidly approaching. The qualification criteria for next months TRI Equestrian National Eventing Championships is being relaxed due to the number of one-day events that have been canceled in recent weeks. The Board of Directors decided to withdraw the requirement for riders to have completed an AIRC one-day event in order to be eligible to enter the championships at Lisgarvan House. Competitors are instead, advised to ensure that their horses are fit and ready to compete at the championships on Sunday 2nd September. The Board of Directors also decided to introduce a combined training class for primary riders. The class, however, will only run if there are sufficient entries. The schedule has been updated to reflect these changes and is available to download at this link

Be advised that entries for this competition close at 12 midday on Friday 24th Aug.

If cross-country is your drug then you might also be interested in any of the following events coming up in Cloncaw Equestrian Centre, Co. Monaghan. Contact them via Facebook or Call 087 975 1009.

Sun 10:00 · Cloncaw Equestrian, Glaslough · Glaslough, Monaghan, Ireland
9 Sept–23 Sept · Cloncaw Equestrian, Glaslough · Glaslough, Monaghan, Ireland
Sat 08:30 · Cloncaw Equestrian, Glaslough · Glaslough, Monaghan, Ireland
On a more local level we have Gordon’s Bay hunter trials to look forward to on Sunday 26th August. It’s great to have the chance to attend a well run event without hauling 2 or 3 hours down the country and you may rest assured that Ryan and Liz will have the course in tip-top shape.
If you do fancy racking up a bit of mileage you could do worse than attend the hunter trials being organised around the country…
Image may contain: one or more people, horse, outdoor, text and nature
On the show jumping front there is usually a plethora of both training shows and registered events happening that will cater for every level of rider. Things are actually quite quiet at the moment on the riding club front in this discipline but you can get in plenty of practice for the up coming autumn league by attending Twin Towns Equestrian on a wednesday evening for their training shows. Details as follows…


From 6pm starting off with cradle stakes working through to 1.10m

1 class -€8
2 classes-€15
3 or more-€20 (per rider)

Refreshments available. Contact via Facebook or Call 086 036 7656.

Another great venue for enjoying  a training show is Mulvin Stables between Sion Mills and Newtownstewart. They generally run their shows on a Thursday evening and again can be contacted via Facebook or call Richard on 00447753957646.

If you feel that your riding needs a little polishing (and lets face it, whose doesn’t?) you can avail of lessons with Bruce Vial at Drumanoo Equestrian near Killybegs on a Thursday.

Group lessons in Jumping, XC or dressage.
€15 each.
Group size: 4
Starting 5.30
WhatsApp or Facebook for availability and preferred time slots and which disciplines you would like to partake in. Each lesson 1hr. Everyone welcome.

Twin Towns Equestrian Lessons with European Show jumping Coach Gary Marshall this Thursday 16th Aug…. if you’re looking for a total going over or just a bit of fine tuning this is the man for the job. Group and private lessons available….call 0860367656 for any questions you may have or to book.

Slightly further afield in the training calender is the AIRC training day being held at the always-enjoyable Flowerhill. Details on the following poster. Obviously none of you will be free to attend this as you’ll be at Lenamore, but I decided to include it here anyway!