Carlow Eventing rider Sam Watson is Ireland's top-ranked equestrian athlete

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Darren Hassett

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Darren Hassett

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Sam Watson (far left) and Sarah Ennis (third from left) will be on the Irish Eventing team this weekend in The Netherlands for the Boekelo Nations Cup

Carlow Eventing rider Sam Watson is Ireland's top-ranked equestrian athlete while Darragh Kenny continues rise up Longines World Jumping Rankings.

World Equestrian Games team silver medalist Sam Watson remains the highest-placed Irish Equestrian athlete on the World Rankings, with the Carlow native at No.9 on the latest Eventing rider rankings announced this week by the FEI.

Watson scored a four-star win at Ballindenisk International in April, while he also recorded an impressive fourth place finish at Tattersalls International last weekend. Galway’s Cathal Daniels is at No.17 on the Eventing rankings while Meath’s Sarah Ennis is at No.22.

Darragh Kenny continues to be the top-ranked Irish rider on the latest Longines World Show Jumping rankings, with the Offaly native moving up six places to No.17. Kenny has been in outstanding form since the start of the year scoring several podium finishes in five-star Grand Prix competitions while he has also been on Nations Cup duty for Ireland.

Cork’s Shane Sweetnam is next best of the Irish at No.31, just ahead of Wexford’s Bertram Allen at No.34. Ireland has eight riders inside the top 50 including Denis Lynch (No.40), Shane Breen (No.42), Daniel Coyle (No.44), Conor Swail (No.45) and Mark McAuley (No.46). Bertram Allen continues his reign as the top ranked Under 25 rider in the world, while Daniel Coyle is at No.3.

In Dressage, Kildare’s Judy Reynolds has moved up one place to No.18, while Ireland’s Heike Holstein has made a massive jump of 59 places to No.148. Ireland has three riders inside the top 60 of the Para Dressage rankings, with Michael Murphy at No.46, Tamsin Addison and No.53 and Kate Kerr-Horan at No.60.