Richie Moloney (IRL) and Rocksy Music rocked the short course during the Tryon Summer 6 $137,000 Horseware Ireland Grand Prix CSI 3* at Tryon International Equestrian Center & Resort (TIEC), finishing first with a time of 38.574 seconds. Brooke Kemper (USA) and Arpeggi, the 2010 Westphalian gelding (Arpeggio x Lancer III) owned by Caroline Blum, finishing just 0.2 seconds behind Moloney, claimed second place with a time of 38.714 seconds. Third place honors were awarded to Santiago Lambre (MEX) and Easy Girl, the 2011 Oldenburg mare (Conthargos x Nintender) owned by Mario Onate, after a clear round and a jump-off time of 39.252 seconds.
A thunderstorm that began midway through first-round action Saturday evening paused the competition, which resumed Sunday morning. Thirty-four riders attempted the first round of the Ken Krome (USA) course, with six riders qualifying for the shortened second round of the competition; three riders qualified during Saturday night’s competition and three qualified Sunday morning. Moloney earned his ticket to the jump-off on Sunday morning, and acknowledged that the delay was a benefit to his mount. “The weather helped me a little bit, I think!” Moloney said. “He’s a little bit more up under the lights, so he was more relaxed this morning.”
Moloney and Rocksy Music, the 2008 Irish Sport Horse gelding (Ars Vivendi x Diamond Serpent) owned by Equinimity LLC, have competed together for the last five years. “I’ve had him for five years, since he was an eight-year-old, actually!” he explained enthusiastically after his win. “He’s been jumping really well lately, so I’m really happy I got this win.”
The Irishman was fifth to go in the jump-off, and he was determined to win, planning his round accordingly after watching the first pair go. “I watched Brooke [Kemper] go, so I tried to get more or less the same numbers,” he elaborated. “I did one less [stride] to the last jump. She did eight, and I did seven. It was a little bit risky, but it paid off.”
After competing throughout the duration of the Tryon Summer Series, Moloney reported that he was thrilled to step atop the podium in the Tryon Stadium and hear the Irish national anthem played during the Horseware Ireland sponsored competition. “The shows are great and it’s good competition. It’s nice when the crowd is here. It’s a great atmosphere!” he said with a smile.
As the Tryon Summer Series comes to an end, Moloney will be taking a vacation before maintaining the momentum of today’s win once he returns to competition in a month. Moloney concluded by saying,”I just want to thank the owners of the horse. I’d like to thank the groom and everyone that helped with this. It’s a team effort; there’s a lot of people involved!”