Horse Sport Ireland Chairman Joe Walsh has said that the gold medal win by Team Ireland Equestrian’s under 14 show jumpers in the European Show Jumping Championships at Comporta in Portugal last week was a huge boost for the show jumping community in Ireland.
“I want to congratulate the five children who were part of the team; Cormac Hanley, Tommy Harty, Tim Mac Donagh, Hanna Smyth and Kerry Taggert and their families. They brought honour to their sport and their country,” he said.
“I would also like to acknowledge the contribution of High Performance Manager Comdt John Ledingham and the Team Vet Willam Lalor who both travelled to Portugal with the team.
“The other members of the High Performance Committee Heather Coyle (Chairperson), Liam Murphy (SJI nominee) and James Kernan (HSI nominee) also contributed significantly in the planning and execution of the programme.”
The Horse Sport Ireland Chairman said that an achievement like this required everybody involved working together towards a common goal.
“The Irish Sports Council has been hugely supportive of our sport. Show Jumping Ireland have also provided the infrastructure for these children to get involved in the sport and also provided funding towards the cost of the children and horses getting to Comporta. The support of Horseware, TRM and Bluegrass feeds is also very important,” he said.
“I understand that it was 1984 since Ireland last won a European Team Gold medal in an underage show jumping championship and with the talent we have in Ireland I am sure it won’t be as long until we win another one!” he said.