Meath’s Alexander Butler recorded his second major win of the weekend in the TRM/Horseware Grand Prix at his local show in Ballivor. With spectators lining the arena for the main event, there was no shortage of support for local riders competing on the day.
Riding Ladycastle Syndicate’s Vimminka, Butler was fractions ahead of his closest rival to claim the lion’s share of the €4,000 on offer. By Nabab De Reve and out of Naminka, the 13-year-old mare has been very consistent for Butler.
Speaking after the win, Butler said: “It has been a great weekend with two major wins under our belt. I always like competing at this show and today the atmosphere was incredible. The committee at Ballivor put on a great show and it was enjoyable for everyone. Like Friday night, new people are taking an interest in show jumping.”
Regarding the jump-off, he said: “Eddie Moloney had set the pace and there wasn’t much room to better his time. I guess I made it up across the ground. The plan now is the final of Jumping in the City and the Premier Series. Hopefully we can do enough to earn a place in Dublin.”
Going midway in the 14-strong jump-off, Butler knew what lines to take and crossed the line clear in 35.30 seconds. Eddie Moloney set the bar high early when delivering a clear on Douglas Hill in 35.64, which proved good enough for the runner-up spot. Third place belonged to Damian Griffin and Tabby, who also delivered a foot-perfect round, albeit in 36.66.
The second round of RDS horse qualifiers took place at Coilog last week. The round, which was sponsored by Equest Pramox, saw almost 300 combinations battle it out for a coveted place at Dublin.
Taking the honours in the five-year-old division was Liam O’Meara aboard Russel Style.
In the six-year-olds, victory belonged to Clem McMahon and Hilton CMS Paparazzi, while Robert Harrison and Landlystes Rubina claimed the seven- and eight-year-old qualifier.