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Babington Strikes Again In Florida

AFTER winning the $75,000 PDP Capital Masters Cup in Wellington, Florida, at the end of last month, Ireland's Kevin Babington returned today (Sunday) to claim the $100,000 Grand Prix at the same venue.

Shortlisted for the Irish Olympic show jumping team, Carrick-on-Suir-born Babington devastated his nearest rival, Canada's Ian Millar, with close to a five second lead in a faultless second round, and left US star McLain Ward limping home in third with four faults in the three-man jump-off.

US-based Babington was riding his main mount, the Irish-bred <Carling King>, which has stood him in such good stead over the last four seasons. This is the horse he will be hoping to take with him to Athens in August.

The other members of the shortlisted Athens squad are Billy Twomey, Cian O'Connor, Robert Splaine and Peter Charles.

Pundits agree that 2004 is the year most likely to see Ireland bring home its first equestrian medal from the Olympics. Babington's superlative form in the opening months of the show jumping season would suggest that the predictions may be based on more than just optimistic thinking.


$100,000 Cosequin US Open Jumper Championship, CSIO**** (GRAND PRIX)
Sunday March 14, 2004

1) CARLING KING: Kevin Babington (IRL) Faults 0/0 Time 42.70
2) PROMISE ME: Ian Millar (CAN) Faults 0/0 Time 47.60
3) SAPPHIRE: McLain Ward (USA) Faults 0/4 Time N/A


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