A quick look–in at Clifden Show on Thursday afternoon last confirmed that this shop-window for the Connemara Pony is growing and expanding beyond belief. Families poured in and took more than a casual interest in proceedings as they crowded around the two Rings, one showing the ponies In- Hand and Ring 2 full of Ridden Pony Classes. Unlike the opening day on Wednesday, the weather on Thusday stayed dry and balmy. Just a few snaps were taken by this soon-to-be-retired Blogger. First up is the Junior Champion bred and owned by Kevin Mullen of Roundstone and shown by his brother Cathal Mullen to win the competitive Two Year Old Mare Class. GURTEEN JENNIFER (Glencarrig Knight X Gurteen Eimer) has Marble, Coosheen Finn and Murphy Rebel, Janus and Independent and many more well favoured names in her bloodline.
Micheál Reaney of Lettermore won the Reserve Junior Championship with the Three Year Old Stallion Class winner, the golden dun TRÁ BHÁIN CEÍLEÓG (Shadows Dun X Cool Running) carrying bloodlines of Silver Shadow, Miss Muffet, Poetic Justice and Rebel Wind.
The Seven and Older Stallion winner was Moorland Snowy River (Laerkens Cascade Dawn X Easter Trixie). This 13y old snow white pony is bred and owned by Cathy Snow Coyne and Martin Coyne, Letterfrack, His antecedents include Tully grey, Dale Haze, Rebel Wind, Abbeyleix Owen and Killyreagh Kim.
Snowy River was later declared the Reserve Supreme Champion of the Show. He is a prolific breeder and has been much decorated over the years in the show-ring.
Fiona and Tomás Grimes had won a Red Rosette for their younger mare, An Cheathrú Chaol Bláthnaid (Robe Earl x Lishin Star) in one of the biggest classes of the day, for Mare Six or Seven Years old.
But it was left to their 16 yr old Lackragh Beauty (Carra Cashel X Carnawre Dolly) to win the Mare aged 16 and Over Class for her Mayo owners, Fiona and Tomás and to gain the supreme accolacde as Best Pony of the Show. The 16 year old is indeed a beauty, tracing back to Coral Misty, Kimble, Queen of Diamonds, Gloves Misty and Murphy Rebel.
Clifden had a more wide-ranging Pony Show than ever this year when as well as Wednesday’s events and the Performance Day on Friday, Saturday was added to the programme with a ‘Family Fun Day’. Planned activities include a Fancy Dress, a Children’s Lead Rein Class, Family Working Hunter, Inter-Provincial Showjumping, a Dog Agility Show, and – what would the founding fathers of the Show 93 years ago have thought!- Irelands Fittest Family ?? and a Waltzing and Jiving Competition!! At 2.30 in the afternoon. Holy Moses! What’s next?