Ireland has come second in the Longines FEI Nations Cup Jumping in Falsterbo, following a thrilling four-way jump off.

Strong performance

It was the Dutch team who were victorious, with the Swedish home team in third place.

The British team put in a strong performance, with clear rounds from all riders, but it wasn’t enough to make the it into the jump-off and they finished fifth.

Sam Hutton jumped the team’s first clear of the day on Happydam, but went on to rack up 12 faults in the second round.

William Funnell and his Hickstead Derby winner Billy Buckingham gained just one time fault over both rounds.

Harriet Nuttall was competing at her first Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup on A Touch Imperious. ‘Henry’ had one down in the first round, but was clear in the second.

Nations Cup team stalwart Michael Whitaker had an unfortunate two down in the first round with JB’s Hot Stuff, but jumped clear second time out.

Marginal lead

Ireland held a marginal lead at the halfway stage thanks to clear rounds from Bertram Allen (Gin Chin Van Het Lindenhof), Mark McAuley (Utchan De Belheme) and Paul O’Shea (Skara Glen’s Machu Picchu).

The second round saw Bertram and Mark pick up four faults each, and with Sweden, Italy and Netherlands all jumping clear, the pressure was on Ireland’s final two riders.

Daniel Coyle stepped up to the task and jumped clear with Cita, before Paul completed a fantastic double clear to leave Ireland on a total of four faults.

Incredibly fast

Ireland was joined in the jump-off by Italy, Sweden and the Netherlands.

Italy’s Luca Marziani was the first rider to go and posted yet another clear in 42.71sec. Second to go was Henrick Von Eckermann, who also jumped clear with Mary Lou in a faster time of 41.5sec

Johnny Pals took the ride for The Netherlands and was incredibly fast, giving him a clear in 39.33sec. Last to go was Daniel Coyle for Ireland who also jumped clear, but in a slightly slower time of 40.47sec.

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