The battle for SJI Autumn Grand Prix title intensified today, with Brendan Murphy claiming victory in the penultimate weekend of jumping at Killossery (13th December). Riding Immun Ocean Ogara, he lodged the winning round of clear in 33.54 seconds. Although the placing means that Murphy remains in third place on the leaderboard on 36 points, the title is still there for the taking as two rounds will take place in Cavan next weekend (19th & 20th December). Owned and bred by Alan Robertson, the 10- year-old Irish sport Horse is by Numero Uno and out of the Alba sired dam Sambia.
Murphy had also claimed the runner-up spot in the earlier Coopers Horse Transport 1.20m with the eight-year-old, Over Lux. Murphy was less than a second behind the winner, Orla Cassidy and Bridgemans Olympic Star, clear in 21.71.
In total 18 combinations went to post in the €2,000 Boomerang Bedding and Ringwood Construction 1.35m class, with six returning for the jump-off. Jamie Garland and Zedlepplin were denied a place in the jump-off after incurring a single time fault in the first round.
John McEntee, cemented his position on the leaderboard as he added another eight points to his tally when slotting into second place in this round. Riding Hip Girl, he was just over a second behind when he clocked 34.57 seconds. This means that he has clocked up a total of 56 points ahead of the final two rounds. He is 18 points ahead of his closest rival, Philp Gaw and Ardnacshel Coovella. Owned by Stephex Stables, Hip Girl is a an 11-year-old Swedish bred mare, by HipHop and out of the Carthago sired dam, Mysterious Girl 2.
Third place was filled by County Down rider, Emma McEntee, who delivered a clear with the Miguel Bravo owned MHS New York, when clear in 35.77 seconds.
The last of the double clears and taking fourth place was Ellie Humphries and the Alison Mercer owned CV Santander in a time of 40.84 seconds.
Brendan Murphy was back in the ribbons, this time taking claiming fifth place with WCE Cruco. The combination was fastest of the four faulters in 37.74.
John Floody opted for the longer lines with Kathryn Magennis, Accidental Diamond, but despite the careful approach, four faults in 40.51, would only prove good enough for sixth place.