Mhuscraí’s Mairead flying the flag for Ireland in China

Mairead, the sister of Cork North West TD Aindrias Moynihan and Cork County Councillor Gobnait Moynihan, came joint third in the recent  Fédération Intenational de Toueisme Equestre (FITE) TREC competition. 

TREC is an equestrian discipline originally developed in France in the 1970s as a way to improve the skills of trekking guides and horses. It has since developed into a sport in its own right, with thousands of participants across the globe. 

In addition to being the International Liaison Officer for TREC and one of its founding members, Mairead also rides for Ireland under its banner regularly participating in international events that promote equi-tourism through horseback orienteering. 

Last October Mairead was among a trio of leading Irish equestrians who were invited to represent Ireland at the prestigious 2018 Weifang Festival in eastern Chinese province of Shandong. 

Organised by the man who spearheaded the equestrian section at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the three-day festival featured a variety of sports, including orienteering and horseback archery as well as cross-country and endurance contests under FITE standards. 

At the time she said that in addition to allowing her to represent Ireland in the sport that she loves, the Weifang Festival was also an opportunity to sell Ireland as an equi-tourism destination to countries such as India, Russia, Pakistan, the US and China

“As a team we are all committed to the sport of TREC and the promotion of Ireland as an equestrian holiday destination,” said Mairead

For their most recent Chinese adventure Mairead, Glanmire woman Elaine Dolan Crowley and the Irish team were among teams from France, Russia, UK, Denmark, Austria, USA, Singapore and Hong Kong that took part in the part in the 2019 Chinese Equestrian Festival in Feng Ning county, close to the inner Mongolian border. 

The competition involved a day orienteering on horseback, followed by an obstacle course and Control of Paces (a version of dressage involving control of the horses at walking and canter paces).  

Elaine finished in second place behind French rider Amanti Muller, with Mairead finishing in joint third spot. 

Cllr Gobnait Moynihan she was extremely proud of the fact that her sister once again represented her country with distinction.

Mairead has spent her life around horses and is truly passionate about all equestrian sports. I am very proud of her and Elaine who have done a mighty job representing Ireland on the international stage. Coming home with medals was the icing on the cake,” said Cllr Moynihan

“This kind of success places Ireland firmly on the international stage when it comes to equestrian tourism,” she added.