Tuesday 20 August 2019

Lucy leaves mark both at home and overseas

THERE IS no doubt that Ireland's pony riders are considered as some of the best in the world, recording results across Europe in a variety of height categories. One such Wexford rider, Lucy Latta, has certainly made a name for herself, clocking up results at home and abroad.

Lucy began riding at the tender age of six years and attended Carrigbeg Riding School in Co. Carlow. While riding her first pony, 'She's Pretty', which was Robert Power's (Aintree Grand National-winning jockey 2007) first jumping pony, she got her first taste of show jumping. Entering the competitive show jumping arena early, she first competed in Under-8s, Under-10s and the Glencarrig Lady League competitions, before moving into the hotly-contested 128 cm. division.

It was moving into the Show Jumping Ireland 128 cm. division that Lucy began to shine. Campaigning three ponies, 'Time To Party', 'Glenkeen Irish Pride' and 'Wyndham Tom Thumb' (Bob), she claimed many line-ups across the country. Her talent was clear to see as she produced 'Time To Party' from a complete novice to Grade A. Similarly, 'Wyndham Tom Thumb' was originally a show and working hunter pony that turned into a superstar in the show jumping arena.

Lucy's talent did not go unnoticed, and before long she found herself representing her country on many Irish teams. She was a member of the gold medal-winning Irish teams at the Scottish H.P.I. in 2007 and English H.P.I. (Southview) in 2009 and, the silver medal team at Wales and West in 2008. She also competed successfully in 'Rowallen' (2008) and 'Southview' (2008 and 2009), culminating in fourth and fifth placings in the Grand Prix.

On the home soil, she won the 128 Spring Tour League 2009, and finished second overall in the Premier League, with her pony 'Bob' being crowned the leading pony of the Premier League. Lucy finished her 128 career on a high, winning her last class, the Tansan Properties Grand Prix, in Cavan in November, with 'Glenkeen Irish Pride' having already won the Grand Prix at the October show with the same pony.

Now moving out of the 128 cm. division, she looks forward to her career in 138s and 148s with her ponies 'Limaut' and 'Edna', who was on the silver medal-winning team at this year's European Pony Championships, finishing fourth, individually ridden by Emma O'Dwyer.

Keen to explore other disciplines, Lucy is also proving to be a very successful competitor on the eventing circuit, taking the red rosette on her first outing in Craigantlet, and a second in Loughamore.

Encouraged by her mum, Yvonne, who also had many wins in the eventing field, she has now moved into the higher pony 'A' level. Now trained by her aunt and international competitor, Elizabeth Power, there is no doubt that Lucy will also feature in many eventing line-ups.

Like every good sportsperson, Lucy has a family team behind her which includes her mum, dad, brother Andrew, and Con and Mags Power.

Ever ambitious, this young girl hopes to continue her success into 138s and 148s and would like to compete internationally for her country in both show jumping and eventing.

When not competing, Lucy loves hunting with the Bree and Wexford hounds on her hunter called 'Wally'. She is also a keen hockey player, swimmer and skier, but is probably happiest at home with her dogs, looking after her ponies.

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