The 9 Lives of Irishman Mark Kyle (Now 8 Lives, Post-Badminton)

When it comes to riding cross-country, the Irish are among the toughest in the world. Check out this video of Mark Kyle’s epic Badminton tumble, from which both horse and rider emerged virtually unscathed.

The incident occurred at the troublesome Mound jump, which claimed a number of victims throughout the day.

[Mike Baker]

Unbelievably, the pair got up and walked off the course unhurt — they must have had a little luck on their side as well! Nonetheless, no one is built tougher than the Irish, and we look forward to seeing them back on course soon.

Between the mud, the rain and a thoroughly grueling track, this year’s Badminton course rewarded the toughest of the tough — so, not surprisingly, the Irish contingent fared relatively well. Seven Irish pairs started the field — Mark Kyle with Coolio, Austin O’Connor with Ringwood Mississippi, Capt. Geoff Curran with Shanaclough Crecora, Sarah Ennis with Sugar Brown Babe, Joseph Murphy with Sportsfield Othello, Jim Newsam with Magennis and Clare Abbott with Euro Prince — of which four finished.

Austin O’Connor held the top spot, moving up from 63rd after dressage to finish in 15th, adding cross-country time penalties and just one show jumping rail to his score. Check out this video of Austin, sounding quite breathless after a scrappy but effective cross-country round in an interview with IrishHorse.TV. Capt. Geoff Curran finished close behind in a very respectable 20th despite his horse having lost a shoe early on the cross-country course. Clare Abbott finished 27th in her Badminton debut, and Joseph Murphy got the job done to complete the event in 30th place. [Full results]

All were mounted on Irish Sport Horses. The breed dominated the top of the leader board, with half of the top 10 horses listed as ISH. These included the winning horse, Sam Griffiths’ Paulank Brockagh, a 10-year-old mare by the Grand Prix showjumper Touchdown, as well as Harry Meade’s Wild Lone (3rd), Paul Tapner’s Kilronan (4th) and Tim Price’s Ringwood Sky Boy (9th). Not surprisingly, the ISH studbook currently sits atop the World Breeding Federation for Sport Horses (WBFSH) Eventing Studbook Rankings.

Sam Griffiths and Paulank Brockagh win Badminton! Photo by Jenni Autry.

Badminton winners Sam Griffiths and Paulank Brockagh, an ISH. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Go Irish Eventing!



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