Cian O'Connor
Olympic Bronze Medallist

News: 2008

Cian Wins Again At Olympia!

Not content with his first-ever win at Olympia on Friday with Rancorrado, Cian repeated the magic today with a decisive win on Complete in the BIC Speed Stakes, beating both Britain's Michael Whitaker and Belgium's Philip Le Jeune in a field of 21 starters.

Cian said from London: "I am so delighted you wouldn't believe it. I thought the Rancorrado victory was something special but this just adds icing to the cake. Complete has always had a good record against the clock, and it is marvellous that he won here today against such stiff opposition."

Cian Makes Victory Debut At Five-Star Olympia

Rancorrado gave Cian his first win at Olympia tonight, something he says he's been dreaming about since he was a little boy. "I'm just completely over the moon, " he said. "Olympia has been an iconic show for so much of my life, and it's hard to describe how it feels to actually win such a major class here, against such top riders and horses."

The competition was the main feature class at 1m60, and Cian was one of 14 in the jump-off. Rancorrado jumped two copybook clear rounds.

Cian And Rancorrado Third In First Olympia Jump Off

On the first day of Olympia's World Cup show in London, Cian took third place in the 1m60 Jump Off class with Rancorrado. He said afterwards: "I wasn't sure how he would take to this arena, but he jumped brilliantly again, two super clear rounds. It's a great start to what will be a long week."

Cian And Baloufina Win Geneva Speed Final

On the last day of the World Cup Show at Geneva, Cian and Baloufina took their first victory of the weekend in the Prix du Rhone Speed Final. They streaked across the line a tenth of a second ahead of Switzerland's Pius Schwizer and Jamaica VIII.

Afterwards Cian commented: "I am absolutely thrilled with the mare. We've been knocking on the door at Geneva each day so it was great to get our head in front today."

Super Second Place For Complete In Swiss Grand Prix

Cian and Complete recorded a superb second place in the five-star Credit Suisse Grand Prix at the World Cup Show in Geneva tonight, beating off challenges from some of the world's top riders and horses.

Cian was one of 13 through to the jump-off and held the pole position almost to the end, when the USA's Laura Kraut and Miss Independent shaved a fraction of a second off Complete's time.

Afterwards Cian commented: "I am absolutely thrilled with the horse, as must be the owners, Castlemartin Stud and Stephen O'Connor. Complete has a huge stride, but nevertheless this was a very big arena, and we were up against some of the world's top talent, like Eric Lamaze, Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum and the Whitakers, just to mention a few. The horse excelled himself, for this was a seriously major competition in which to come second."

Cian Wraps Up Successful Weekend In Brussels

A fourth place in the Accumulator competition with Irish Independent Echo Beach and eight faults in the Grand Prix with Rancorrado wrapped up a successful weekend at the five star show in Belgium for Cian. He said afterwards: "As a big horse Rancorrado sometimes found the arena just a bit tight but jumped very well, and will come on well for Geneva. I was very pleased with Echo Beach's fourth place, needless to say."

Another Fifth For Cian At Brussels

Rancorrado gave Cian his second fifth place at Brussels on Friday night. Competing in the Rolex Classic 1m55 jump off, the bay gelding produced a super result in his first major indoor show.

Cian said: " I didn't know how he'd take to the big jumps in such a tight space, but he was incredible. We had one great clear and one down in the jump off to finish fifth.

"He's an amazing athlete, a heart like a lion and clever like a pony! I am delighted with his performance."

Cian Has Bright Start At Brussels

Cian is currently competing at the five-star show in Brussels, and tonight took a fifth place in the 1m45 Two Phase with Complete.

Cian said from the Belgian show: "I was thrilled with Complete tonight. He has been on a break since the Dublin Horse Show in August and this is his first international outing since then. The top five in this competition all finished on the same second, so that gives you some idea of the calibre of the competition!"

Tomorrow he'll be competing in the 1m55 Jump Off class with Rancorrado at 5.30 pm local time, and we'll have all the news and results from Brussels here over the weekend.

Karlswood Blanket Finish At Kill Final

VIDEO AVAILABLE HERE

Today at the final of the SJI Autumn League the boys from Karlswood took an impressive four of the top seven placings. Both Mark Kinsella and Raphael Goehrs had one horse each through to the jump off.

Mark partnered his Cavan winner PS I Love You and jumped a super first round, but an unlucky fence down in the jump off meant they finished fourth overall.

Raphael equally had a great first round aboard his Portmore winner Mistral de Ravellet, but with a very tight tight turn to the second oxer had the back bar and finished an eventual seventh place.

Cian had two clear into the jump off, Irish Independent Echo Beach and Markopoulo. Trevor Breen had set a flying pace aboard Oldtown Katie and Echo Beach was clear but came home fractionally slower to finish eventual third.

Cian was last to go on Markopoulo and really went all out to win the class. Taking a very tight turn to the second jump and with a long gallop to the last fence, a wall, where the pair took a stride out and produced a thrilling finish to win the class. As a result Cian was crowned SJI Autumn Grand Prix League Champion.

Cian said afterwards: "It was an exciting finish to the national season here in Ireland and obviously I was delighted with my horses especially Markopoulo. He answered all the questions and jumped superbly here today. On behalf of my team and indeed all the riders I would like to extend a sincere thanks to the sponsors Allianz who have signed up to support Kill International for the next few years. They have also set up a new insurance scheme for both horse and rider and this looks very interesting."

Earlier in the day Cian won the 1m30 aboard Joe Sloan's ABC Loreen. Finally Cian commented: I'm really looking forward to the next few weeks competing abroad. The horses leave tomorrow for Brussels where I start jumping on Thursday and I'll be taking Rancorrado, Complete and Irish Independent Echo Beach. Hopefully we'll have some more good news to report soon!"

Karlswood One And Two In Portmore

The Portmore Grand Prix in Co. Down was won yesterday on Mistral de Ravellet by Frenchman Raphael Goehrs, who has been based with Cian at Karlswood Stables since August.

Cian was second aboard Markopoulo and they were the only two double clear rounds in the competition.

Cian said afterwards: "I am delighted for Raph and although I don't like being beaten it was great to see all his hard work paying off that he has put in over the last few months. He rode two superb rounds and won it easily.

Raphael commented after his victory: "I am thrilled with the horse, he is only an eight year-old and this is my first Grand Prix win ever and I'm overwhelmed with the occasion." He said he wanted to pay special thanks to Cian for all the help he has given him during his stay in Ireland.

Raphael will compete in Kill next Sunday, and as it's the final show of the season he will return home after that.

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