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Murphy Rebel 1976 – 2011. S 696 (by Rebel Wind X Muffy) this year (2009) has reached the ripe old age of 33. He is semi-retired but still in demand by mare owners and has already covered 3 mares this April. Since 1990 he has been with owner Philip McMahon in Co. Cavan. Philip has a very high regard for his stallion which he describes as “the old type of pony having a wonderful temperament. You didn’t need a headcollar or bridle on him at all when he was covering mares, just open the stable door and he came out, did the job and took himself quietly back into the stable again”. Murphy has always been a fertile sire, Phiip recalls a season when, of the 105 mares covered, 93 went in foal. He has produced many Grade A showjumpers and performance ponies. Murphy Rebel was bred by Martin Conneely on Clifden’s Sky Road and later owned by Stephen Heanue of Clifden who bought him as a foal and had him registered at age three as a stallion in ’79. His breeding was pure native on the male side as the Rebel Wind line had no infusion of outside blood and traced back to Rebel and Cannon Ball. His dam Muffy had a plenty of outside blood in her pedigree being a daughter of the part -Arab Clonkeehan Auratum. She also had Thoroughbred blood going back to Thistleton. Muffy had wins at Clifden and so too did her progeny and she is said to have passed on the Arab highly strung temperament and beautiful movement to her foals.
Rebel Wind was a much used stallion in Connemara and left 34 other stallion sons apart from Murphy Rebel, including the well known Marble, as well as 275 daughters, so obviously played a big part in the expansion of the Blue line in Connemara. * Dara Heanue’s father Stephen Heanue often showed the stallion at Clifden but, says Dara, this pony, who sired a long line of showring winners, was himself often overlooked in the ring. (interesting Comment March ’11)
Padraig Heanue remembers travelling with his father and Murphy Rebel in the early eighties on the stallion run to places like Roundstone and Ballyconeely and Carna in a narrow old horse box and the pony would cover 5 or 6 mares in an evening. He describes the stallion as rather an old type of pony with good bone but with a slightly plain head. The Carna area mares suited him best as some of the quality lighter boned mares were in that area. The stallion spent three seasons in that area so there is quite an influence of Murphy Rebel blood there. “Murphy was easy enough to manage but never over-quiet, you always knew it was a stallion you were holding”. Murphy was briefly with the late Val Moran in Westport for about a year until Philip McMahon bought him in 1990.
Murphy Rebel’s progeny are too numerous to list but he is known to have bred three Clifden Supreme Champions for Bobby Bolger of Derrygimbla near Ballyconneely who actually took the Supreme 5 times with these ponies. Murphy Rebel’s son Coral Prince out of Snowdrop Surprise was the first to take the Supreme Clifden Championship in 1993. The following year’s Supreme was Queen Gillian, this time a daughter of Murphy Rebel and Gillian. 1995 saw the Murphy Rebel mare
Coral Misty out of Gurteen Misty take the Supreme, a feat which she repeated in 1997. And in 1999, Queen Gillian came to the fore again and won the Supreme for a 2nd time. Other Clifden winners of his were Moorland Juliet (1989)out of Lucky Juliet and Derry Playboy.G.(1983) out of Milford Gazelle. Others among Murphy Rebel’s own well known progeny (apart from the Clifden Champions are (1994) a successful showjumping Stallion out of Irishtown Diana, Murphy’s Oscar gained 176 points when jumped by Philip’s daughter Fiona some years ago and in 2001 the pair won the Ridden Championship at Clifden. After a jumping break Oscar is now back jumping clears in the show jumping arena. ♣♣ June 09, An American link to Murphy Rebel. Brenda Kiniyalocts from Ohio in the U.S. is the proud owner of a performance Connemara stallion, a grandson of Murphy Rebel. Her Robuck is a son of Tulira Roebuck and Lecarrow and Lecarrow is by Murphy Rebel. Robuck has distinguished himself in Dressage and Eventing circles and has received the American Connemara Society’s “Award of Excellence”. ♣♣
A wonderful progeny record for this prolific and popular stallion. Murphy Rebel was lightly shown himself but he seldom went to Clifden and never actually won a first there, taking a 2nd in ’82 and a 3rd in the confined stallion class on another occasion. His wins were elsewhere. He took Championships at Westport, Ballinalee, Galway and other major Connemara pony Shows but it was as a sire that he left his greatest legacy.
Ferdia (1989) out of Wireless Wave, Catamaran 1984 out of Miss Charger, Rebel Justice 1990 X Tulira Lily, Curraghnakeely Murphy’s Holiday 1006 ex Glenvalley Nikita.. Gurteen Paddy 96 and Gurteen Rebel 97 ex Gurteen Misty. Fairy Hill Murphy out of Kingstown Fairy who went to England. Village Laddie and
Murphy Himself out of Belcara Rose. The last two are performance geldings.
A new Murphy Rebel stallion son, the recently passed Rickamore Crusheen Rebel out of Gortmore Dolly shows the substance and quality of his sire and will be standing in the Galway area this year.
Among the daughters are Independent (1996) who is out of Gurteen Star, Lecarrow out of Lor Ruadh 2nd and Village Queen out of Village Grey. Lishmar Rebel (1999) and Lishmar Fiona, both ex Moy Dawn.
His grandson Lecarrow King ex Lecarrow is a popular young prize winning stallion and is now winning under saddle in England.
Today many Murphy Rebel descendents are to be found in Ireland and the
U.K. Belgium, the Netherlands, Sweden France and Germanyand the United States, where the name Murphy Rebel is treated with all the respect it deserves. He died in 2011 at age 35.