The ‘Connemara Pony Work Parade’ was an interesting spectacle as the various working activities of the Pony, some old and some modern, were all shown side by side. The display in the Showgrounds was marred only slightly by the incessant rain of the morning, but all bravely paraded forth.
They demonstrated the versatility of the Pony as cart pony drawing turf, as a creel-laden workpony with seaweed spilling out of loaded baskets led by a woman in traditional connemara dress
complete with heavy black shawl necessary to shelter her from the elements.
Another pulled a sidecar, and then a trap. Today’s Pony carried a child in lead rein, riders in side-saddle and dressage wear, and a showjumping rider.
Mr Jackie Walsh of Rosmuc showed the winning filly foal. She is by Linsfort Barney X Owen’s Coral Lady.
The yearling filly first prize winner at the Clifden Show this year, (already featured at Cashel Show), was Peter Molloy’s Dooneen Starlight by Silver Shadow out of Dooneen Castle.
The two year old top filly was Henry O’Toole’s Castle Jewel, whose dam Castle Urchin has been Clifden Supreme in both 2002 and 2007.
Jewel is by Frederiksminde Hazy Match, shown here by Henry’s son Michael.
Beech Honey by Monaghanstown Boy – Beech Girl won the three year old mares class. She belongs to Mary Rabbitt, from Castletowngeoghegan ( and you thought Monaghanstown was a long name!) and her breeder is Patrick McCormack.
Clooshgreen Prince by Frederiksminde Hazy Match and out of Emloughan Beauty, was shown by his owner Dympna O’Brien to win the two year old colt Class and also took the Junior Championship.
Reserve Junior Champion and winner of the three year old colt class was Eamon Burke’s Coolillaun Cushlaun by Currachmore Cashel – Glencarrig Aisling
It may seem strange to see ‘Clover Hill Connemara Ponies’ advertised in Connemara, so far removed from the original ‘Clover Hill’, the former well known Irish Draught stallion, but Bridget and Peter Lee have so aptly named their stud after the clover rich hill which rises behind their house in Dohulla, Ballyconneely, Connemara. There they run a herd of twelve Connemaras including five mares, four of which are due to foal come springtime 2009. They have lightly shown a very pretty yearling filly this season, and she has been well placed in all three of her shows. A box injury while travelling to Clifden Show left her with a tender hindleg but she still remained in seventh place out of a field of thirty five lovely yearlings on the day. She is Butson Grey Sally by Laerkens Cascade Dawn (Hazy Dawn – Laerkens Camille) out of the Castlestrange Fionn mare Mountain Heather. She should go far.
In fact at Ballinrobe Show last Sunday Butson Grey Sally won both her Class and the Championship. Shown here with Bridget Lee
This six year old novice gelding belongs to Grace Murphy of Galway and has often been seen this year among the first three in the Connemara ridden Classes at Western Shows. His rider/owner has taken prizes home from Ardrahan, Ballyconneelly, Westport Corofin, Cashel and other Shows with this pony whom she herself has trained and schooled to a high standard. He has had a number of gelding class wins too, most notably at Roundstone Champion of Champions show last September. She was happy to come 2nd in the 5-6 yr. old ridden pony Class at Clifden this year. His breeding line includes Smokey and Tulira Finn Mac Cool and he is byGlencarraig Prince out of Smokey Star.
Beatrice Murphy is a familiar figure in Connemara Showrings and is usually well placed with her lovely old mares. Lakeside Lady won her ‘Connemara Mares over 20 years’ Class at Cashel Show on August 3rd. The quality, bone, substance and beauty of this 21 yr. old mare by Abbeyleix Dolphin – Kits Bay is very obvious in this picture. Her breeder was Kathleen Maloney. Beatrice’s daughters, Lorna and Grace already feature in the blog. All three are great Connemara pony fans and love to show their ponies.
Lakeside Lady won her class for Mares 20 yrs. and over, at Oughterard on August 30. Beatrice is pleased that this lovely mare whom she describes as ‘Queenly’, is keeping her youthful looks with the proverbial ‘head like a Duchess and behind like the Cook’. Beatrice had bought her as a riding pony for daughter Lorna and she has hunted, won many ridden and in- hand classes In 2007 alone she won 11 firsts. She has bred 4 foals all by Gloves Duke, and all now overseas.
Still Later in the 08 season, this mare was judged Reserve Sureme All Ireland Champion at the Championship Show at Roundstone in September.
Joe Burke from Cloonisle Stud on Galway’s Headford Road, showed the eight year old stallion like a true professional showman, and topped the line in the well supported Connemara stallion class at the Dublin Horse Show in early August.
Undaunted by the two hour tropical downpour which left the ground a sodden mess, Joe stood patiently in soaked clothes in the ring with his charge standing equally patiently and obediently by his side. Currachmore Cashel then demonstrated his free and smooth movement, and strong conformation and presence to win the Connemara Championship for his owner Eamonn Burke, father of Joe. Currachmore Cashel, a prolific Show winner for the past number of years, is by Rosenharley Rowley out of the Bridge Boy mare, Tolka Bridge, and has the diverse lines so characteristic of many Connemara ponies in his background. with Clonkeehan Auratum, Leam Boby Finn, MacDara, May Boy (ir.D.) and Rebel and Toureen Laddie, all contributing to this very fine speciman of Connemara pony.
At the recent Clifden Connemara Pony Show on 21 August, Currachmore Cashel again won the Stallion Class was also Reserve Champion to Kingstown Dana. His son Coolillaun Cushlawn out of Glencarraigh Aisling was awarded the red rosette in the three year old colt class. Well done all round to the Burke family.
On Sunday August 3, at the scenic Cashel Show in Connemara, the Molloy family from Claddaghduff hit the jackpot when their three fillies between them won the yearling filly class, the two year old filly class and the three year old filly class.
Father and son, Peter senior and Peter junior, had a field day, especially as all three ponies were home bred out of two Dooneen mares, Dooneen Castle and Jennifer Rose.
Dooneen Starlight’s win in the yearling Class was quickly followed by Dooneen Stephanie Rose by Fredericksminde Hazy Match – Jennifer Rose taking the top prize in the two year old class. Then it was unbelievable to watch as her full sister, Dooneen Alice, was placed top of a quality line-up in the three year old Class.
Their yearling filly Dooneen Starlight by Silver Shadow – Dooneen Castle, was then awarded the Championship cup and sash as Junior Champion of the show.
The two year old Stephanie Rose was placed Reserve Champion next to Starlight, whose dam is a 23 year old Thunderbolt mare, also bred by Peter Molloy senior.
Truly a bevy of beauties, family owned and family bred.
Some recent wins were at the Irish Pony Society Western Area Show at Dartfield, Loughrea on 31 May. Cashel Bay Prince is owned by his breeders, Robert and Barbara Fallon and is ridden by Claire Crawford of Corrandulla. He is a 6 yr. old stallion by I Love You Melody out of the owners’ mature prizewinning mare Coosheen Pheasant.
The pair have had many successful outings in the past 2 years both in Ireland and England. He is shown here winning the over 16 Ridden Connemara Class at Dartfield and they also came 2nd in their Connemara Working Hunter class and won the Connemara Championship at the this I.P.S. Show. They more recently won the over 16 ridden Connemara Class at Galway County Show on June 14. At the recent Irish Pony Society two day Show at Cavan Equestrian Centre, Aug. 1st and 2nd, this stallion swept the boards, winningThe Supreme Championship of the Show with rider Claire Crawford. But that is only part of the amazing success story of Prince at this Show. For starters he tooks the Novice Working Hunter 153cms. class and the Novice Chamopionship with rider Melanie Young. He went on to win both the under 16 Connemara Working Hunter, the over 16 Ridden Connemara and the Ridden Connemara Championship as well as the In-Hand Connemara Championship. He emerged from the three part Tom Robinson Gold Cup contest with top marks in the 153cms. section, winning that prestigous trophy, and was finally awarded the Supreme Championship of the Show with 39 points out of a possible 40. Whew! you might say, and as we say in Ireland, “now follow that”. Well done to the Crawfords and Robbie Fallon and all concerned.