ISH "Flexible" wins Showjumping World Cup

As reported by Horse Sport Ireland on April 22, 2012

The jumping talent of Flexible is of no great surprise when you look at his family. Bred in Co. Kildare by Edward and Catherine Doyle, Flexible is by the 5* Approved Irish Sport Horse stallion Cruising, who himself enjoyed a successful international showjumping career under Trevor Coyle. He won Grand Prix classes such as Aachen, Dortmund, Geneva, Lucerne, Modena, as well as being a member of winning Nations’ Cup teams in Dublin (1997), Rotterdam (1996), Calgary, Dublin, Aachen (all 1995) and Modena (1994). Under Horse Sport Ireland’s breeding policy a 5* stallion is one who has achieved 2 double clear rounds at CSI5* Grand Prix/Nations Cup level to achieve the status on his own performance or have 2 progeny each with 2 double clear rounds at CSI4* Grand Prix/Nations Cup level. Cruising is rated both 5* SJ OP and 5* SJ PP*.

Flexible’s dam, the 1982 Irish Sport Horse Flex, by Safari (TB), was a performer herself. Flex jumped internationally with Edward Doyle in 1995 and was a member of the Irish Nations’ Cup team who placed 4th in Gijon that year. Based on the international showjumping performance of Flexible, Flex has been awarded a 5* SJ PP rating. Flexible, born in 1996, was followed by a full sister in 1999, Flexing. Flexing has been awarded a 3* SJ OP rating and is currently being competed in the USA by Damian Griffin. Flex also produced a half brother to Flexible in 2002, the promising 2* Approved Irish Sport Horse Stallion Samgemjee, by Ramiro B (BWP). Interestingly Edward Doyle also competed Ramiro B internationally in 2002 and 2003.

Created in 1978 by Swiss journalist and showjumping enthusiast Max E. Ammann, the FEI Showjumping World Cup has played host to some of the best horse/rider combinations the world has to offer.

Irish Sport Horses got off to a promising start at the first World Cup final with Carrolls of Dundalk, ridden by Ireland’s Eddie Macken, taking 3rd place in 1979 (Gothenburg, Sweden). This was followed by Ryan’s Son (1969 ISH g by Ozymandias (TB)) and John Whitaker (GBR) finishing 3rd in 1982 (Gothenburg, Sweden); Special Envoy (1980 ISH g by King of Diamonds (ID C1)) and Nelson Pessoa (BRA) finishing 2nd in 1991 (Gothenburg, Sweden); Special Envoy and Tomboy (1983 ISH g by Coevers (TB)) both ridden by Nelson Pessoa (BRA)placing joint 4th in 1996 (Geneva, Switzerland); and Cruising (1985 ISH St by Sea Crest (ID C1)) and Ireland’s Trevor Coyle finishing 2nd in 1999 (Gothenburg, Sweden).

First World Cup win for ISH Studbook
In 2008 the prolific combination of Rich Fellers (USA) and the 5* Approved Irish Sport Horse Stallion Flexible finished 2nd to German rider Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum and the Hannoverian gelding Shutterfly. The hard work and perseverance of the 10 year partnership paid off when the Fellers/Flexible combination emerged victorious in the 2012 final of the Rolex FEI Showjumping World Cup on 26th April. The ‘S-Hertogenbosch (NED) fixture was impressively the 5th year in a row that Flexible and Fellers qualified for the World Cup final. This is the first World Cup win for the Irish Sport Horse Studbook and the fact that Flexible, at 16, was the oldest horse in the competition is a great reflection of the longevity and durability of the breed. There’s no doubt that Flexible was bred to perform and his recent World Cup win is a great boost to the Irish Sport Horse industry.

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