As the sun set last Thursday evening on the 2014 National Ploughing Championship, the All-Ireland winners ploughed their way back home to Longford in delight.
A record breaking 279,500 attended this year All-Ireland, making it one of the most successful National Ploughing Championships in history.
Longford had a strong contingent participating this year including Matt Connell and Bernard Casey in the Loy Senior Class; Thomas Monaghan, Junior Conventional Class; Special Horse Class, Eamon Egan; Andrew Allen, U21 Conventional Class Senior Grade; Charlie Stewart in the Vintage 2 Furrow Trailer Class; Peter Whitney, Vintage Single Furrow Mounted Class; Eamonn Murray in the Vintage 2 Furrow Mounted Class; Bernard Casey in the Senior Horse Class; Anthony Reynolds, Senior Conventional Class: Anthony Reynolds, 3 Furrow Conventional Match Class: Bernard Jordan; Martin Reilly, Intermediate Conventional. Newtownforbes native and chairwoman of County Longford Ploughing Association (LPA), Cynthia Geelan came second in the prestigious Farmerette Class, while Sean Monaghan secured third place in the u28 Senior Class. This was a remarkable achievement for Séan as he competed against ploughmen from counties with stronger arable farming sectors and more ploughing experience than Longford. Both David Whitney (Macra Class) and Andrew Allen (U21 Senior Plough class) will now be regarded as rising stars in the ploughing field after what can only be described as an “outstanding contribution” by them at this year’s All Ireland.
The All Ireland Senior Loy Champion is Drumlish farmer, Bernard Casey, while Matt Connell junior came second in the U25 Class and Cian Casey took third place in the under 21 competition. Presentations to the Longford participants will take place at the Castle Inn, Newtownforbes on Friday, October 3 next. All sponsors , patrons and friends are welcome on the night.
It was a very successful year for the county in the ploughing championships,” said Ms Geelan. “We are delighted with the results from the All-Ireland and are looking forward to another successful year ahead. I want to take the opportunity to thank everyone that has supported, sponsored and assisted us in any way over the past 12 months. There is no doubt that it has been another very successful year for us.”