CIAN O'Connor will be part of the irish team that lines out tonight (Friday) for the $150,000 Nations' Cup competition at Wellington in Florida.
The Meath-based rider will be piloting a horse he bought in Paris just last November, the ten year-old Sam du Challois. The pair will make up the anchor leg for Ireland, being last of the four-man team to jump.
O'Connor, who was Ireland's Olympic Bronze medallist at London, said from Wellington today: "The horse was spotted by my friend Abdel Said last year, and at the time had only competed nationally in France. I had a look, and thought he showed tremendous potential, so Sam, as we call him, is now on the Karlswood Stables roster. He made his team debut at Ocala in Florida just last month, and delivered a terrific clear second round. I believe he's a good prospect for the future."
O'Connor will be joined at tonight's Nations' Cup by fellow Irish riders Conor Swail (Martha Louise), Shane Sweetnam (Buckle Up) and Richie Moloney (Carrabis Z). Ireland is drawn third to jump of seven teams competing, and will be hoping to challenge the United States team, who took the trophy at Wellington last year. The competition starts at midnight Irish time.