An early clear round from Billy Twomey and ‘Tinka’s Serenade’ raised Irish hopes, but Dermott Lennon and ‘Hallmark Elite’ could only manage a 13 fault tally. Cian O’Connor and ‘K Club Lady’ put Ireland back in contention with a four fault performance, but last man in, Denis Lynch with ‘Lantinus’, has three fences down in the final line of jumps, which pushed Ireland back down the leaderboard.
Billy Twomey and Cian O’Connor’s performances have qualified them for the next round of the Individual World Jumping Finals, from which the top 50 riders will compete on Friday, but O’Connor’s mare twisted her fetlock during today’s competition, and though not serious, he has decided on veterinary advice not to jump the mare any further at Kentucky.
Team Ireland Equestrian’s show jumping manager, Robert Splaine, said afterwards: “World championships are by definition the most difficult of competitions, but the fact that we did not make the cut for the final team round was very disappointing. We will now have to regroup and re-organise for our next Olympic qualifying opportunity, which will be the European championships in Madrid next year.
“However, two Irish riders, Billy Twomey and Cian O’Connor finished in the world’s top 20, which of course put them in contention for individual medals. Billy had a superb clear round with ‘Tinka’s Serenade’ and Cian had just one fence down with ‘K Club Lady’. It’s unfortunate that Cian will not be able to compete any further, but Billy Twomey has the ability to be a real threat, as he’s now in 13th place overall, just over one fence off the leader.”