AN IN-FORM Kilkenny man has claimed victory in the premier showjumping national league for the second successive year.
Eddie Moloney from the Top Flight equestrian centre, Warrington, took the top honours by jumping two clear rounds in the final event of the TRM/SJI Premier horse jumping series.
In the seventh and final round of the league in Barnadown, Gorey, on Sunday, Mr Moloney had two finishers in the top five.
Riding Chatsworth Dan (Furisto Dan – Clogh Cailini) he jumped clear in the first round with five other competitors.
In the jump off Mr Moloney was the only competitor to go clear again over what was a technically demanding course. He beat Tholm Keane aboard Warrenstown You 2 into second place.
This was the third time the Kilkenny man claimed the Premier Series, having also won it in 2009 and 2011.
In all he competed in the seven rounds of the event. As well as the John McDonald, Clogh owned Chatsworth Dan he also rode Macushla R (Aldatus Z - Kingcora Cruise), which is owned by RTE rugby guru Tom McGurk.
The latter horse finished fifth in the class on Sunday, to make it an overall hugely successful day for the Kilkenny rider.
Last year Mr Moloney used the same two horses when winning the event for the second time. Shortly he will head to France with the two horses, plus a third, where he will compete on the showjumping circuit.
“The two horses jumped very well,” Eddie said. “It is nice to have two horses who are very competitive at the same time.”
Came from behind
He is son of Tom and Ann Moloney of the Warrington Equestrian Centre.
Tholm Keane was the long time leader of the Premier Series. He was out of the points only once during the Series when he didn’t qualify for the Grand Prix at Tattersalls.
He didn’t make it into the jump off on Sunday, which handed the ever consistent Mr Moloney the opportunity for victory which he grabbed with both hands. The Kilkenny man came from behind when winning the title last year too, pipping Peter Smyth on the last day of competition.
The latest success adds to the victory Eddie Moloney had at National Balmoral in July when he won both qualifying round and the Grand Prix at that show on Chatsworth Dan and Macushla R.