World Cup win for Mikey Pender and HHS Calais (ISH) in Middle East – Irish on fire as Shane Breen takes third

Irish riders dominated today’s (Sunday) 1m55 five-star Longines World Cup Grand Prix at Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates, where a superb performance from Kildare’s Mikey Pender and the 13-year-old gelding HHS Calais (ISH) bred in Kilkenny by Ita Brennan, saw them take victory after a thrilling jump-off against the clock.

Fourteen combinations made it into the second round and it was Tipperary’s Shane Breen who took the lead with the 11-year-old gelding Scarteen (Cardento x Chellano Z) when clear in 51.64 seconds.. Breen was eventually overtaken by fellow countryman Pender, who crossed the line clear in 50.39 with a brilliant round when second-last to go. Pender had a nervous wait before being declared the winner, after Belgium’s Celine Schoonbroodt- De Azevedo and Deesse des Embruns produced a great effort as last to go, jumping clear in 50.70 to take runner-up spot, pushing Shane Breen into third place on the podium.

Mikey Pender took home just over €54,000 for his World Cup win while Shane Breen collected almost €25,000 for his third place finish. Irish Horse Board Director General Alison Corbally said:

“This was a fantastic result to see an Irish horse and Irish rider take a five-star World Cup win in the United Arab Emirates. The Middle East has been a very popular market for Irish horses, with many high-profile sales over the last few years. Performances such as this one today from HHS Calais (ISH), once again highlight the exceptional talent of Irish horses, who continue to win at the very highest level. Many congratulations to Mikey Pender on his brilliant performance, to the Brennan family who bred HHS Calais and to Shane Breen who made it two Irish riders on the podium.”

HHS Calais (ISH)
– 2011 gelding by Cavalier Royale (HOLST) out of MHS OBOS Cruise (ISH) by OBOS Quality (OLD). Breeder: Ita Brennan, Co. Kilkenny. Owner: Bravo Hughes Ltd. Rider: Michael Pender (IRL).