Darryl Walker’s trip to Charleville Agricultural show proved to be a fruitful one as he rode to victory in the TRM/Horseware National Grand Prix. Riding Manuela Martinelli’s nine-year-old Cushions (ISH), Walker recorded his first win of the series. This is the second time the combination have featured in the line-up having taken third in the TRM/ Horseware National Grand Prix at Louth County Show.
Delighted with the win Walker said, “For the last few weeks I had been concentrating on the RDS qualifiers, so Cushions was not going to any of the Grand Prix Shows. I am aiming her at the Premier Series at Omagh so I needed to give her a run and opted to take the trip to Charleville. It was a tricky course and you needed a horse with a lot of scope to come home clear and without time faults. I was lucky as I was last to go in the jump-off, so I knew what I needed to do. It was a good test prior to Omagh and I am hopeful that she will go as good as she did today”.
First to go in the six-way jump-off, Greg Broderick set off in a determined pace with Billy Cevelle. Keen to record a win, the Tipperary rider kept it tight, but it came at a price as he incurred four faults in 42.34, which later proved good enough for fifth.
With no clears delivered, Peter Leonard’s decision to take a more cautious approach paid off as he delivered the first double clear with Bastion in 51.37 seconds, for eventual second.
Noelle Barry also opted to take the outside lines with Norway Venture, but it cost her valuable seconds as she crossed the line carrying two time penalties in 53.24 for eventual fourth.
Francis Connors looked to be inside the time with Erne Ladygoldilocks, but the clocked stopped at 52.54, which meant he incurred a single time fault and had to contend with third place.
Gerard Campbell and Catch Me If You Can slotted into sixth place having finished on 18 faults in 61.05 seconds.
All eyes were on last to go Darryl Walker and Cushions. Setting off in a calculated pace, Walker kept a close eye on the clock and kept it very tight. A clear in 44.55 saw the Wicklow rider take victory and the lion’s share of the €4,500 in the Dick’s Supervalu sponsored class.
Kindly Sponsored by Dick’s Supervalu Charleville.
1st Cushions/D Walker 0/0/44.55
2nd Bastion/P Leonard 0/0/51.37
3rd ERNE Ladygoldilocks/F Connors 0/1/52.54
4th Norway Venture/N Barry 0/2/53.24
5th Billy Cevelle/G Broderick 0/4/42.34
6th Catch Me If You Can/D McEvoy 0/18/61.05