Clonmel’s Rosemary Gaffney To Compete In Tokyo Para-Dressage Today

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Clonmel’s Rosemary Gaffney will compete in the Para Dressage competition in Tokyo just after 11.30am this morning.

She has ridden since she was five but two major accidents have twice threatened her riding career. She will be competing with her horse Werona. An accident while mounting her horse in 2007 shattered Rosemary’s knee, tibia and fibula. It took her two years to return to competitive riding and she moved to compete in para-dressage.

In 2014 she suffered an even worse fall, breaking 40 bones in her other leg that necessitated six operations in 10 days, yet she returned to compete, initially graded in Grade III. COVID restrictions gave her time to work on her partnership with Werona but it made her regular work, as the long-time Course Director of Kildalton Equine College in Kilkenny, harder because all her classes had to be taught online.

Two Irish Swimmers finished in eight place in their respective finals earlier today – Laois star Nicole Turner lowered her personal best twice in the same day when she finished eighth, in a new lifetime best of 35:29 seconds, in the S6 50m freestyle final.

Limerick’s Roisin Ni Riain made a sensational Paralympic debut by knocking almost three seconds off her personal best by finishing third in her S13 100m Butterfly heat in 1:08.18 to earn a place in her first final where she finished eighth in 1:09.26. Ireland’s Colin Judge continues in the para table tennis after being awarded a walk over.