Michael Murphy is the Irish Field Dressage Rider of the Year 2023

Thu, 02/29/2024 - 07:25
Michael Murphy at the 2023 European Para Dressage Championships :: Photo © Silke Rottermann

-- Text by Paul Nolan

European para dressage medallist Michael Murphy was presented with 2023 The Irish Field Dressage Rider of the Year award  at the The Irish Horse World Awards lunch in the Palmer North Golf Club, The K Club, Straffan, Co. Kildare, Ireland on Tuesday, February 27, 2024.

He is only the second para dressage rider to win the award since the 2012 winner, London Paralympian medallist Helen Kearney.

"I want to thank The Irish Field for this award." said Murphy "Cleverboy has had a good winter. It is a really exciting year for us and we will start our season in two weeks." Michael thanked his mother Sue for her wonderful support and described her as "incredible".

Double Bronze

Murphy added to his championship medal collection when winning the individual silver at the FEI Para Dressage European Championships in Riesenbeck, Germany in September 2023. Ireland’s Grade I para dressage rider and double world bronze medallist scored 79.887% with the sixteen-year-old KWPN Vivaldi gelding Cleverboy for a Freestyle podium finish.

Michael started his 2023 international campaign with a hat-trick at the three-star show in Addington, Great Britain in March, scoring 75.375% to win the Grand Prix A class, 78.333% for Grand Prix B honours and 81.087% for first place in the Freestyle. At Kronenberg, The Netherlands in June, Murphy placed second behind world number one rider Rihard Snikus in the Grand Prix B class in on a 73.542% total. The following month he scored 80.020% to win the Freestyle at Hartpury in Great Britain. With the Paralympic Games in Paris on the horizon for Michael, he will be looking to join Joan Salmon and Helen Kearney on the Irish individual equestrian paralympic medal roll of honour.

Olympian Anna Merveldt, who qualified Ireland for an individual dressage place at the 2024 Paris Olympic Games, was presented with her The Irish Field/Gain Equine Nutrition Star of the Month Award for March 2023.

Previous Winners

Previous winners of The Irish Field Dressage Rider of the Year Award (first awarded in 1997) are as follows:-

1997 - Yvette Truesdale
1998 - Heike Holstein (1)
1999 - Katy Price
2000 - Anna Merveldt (1)
2001 - Anna Merveldt  (2)
2002 - Anna Merveldt  (3)
2003 - Heike Holstein (2)
2004 - Anna Merveldt (4)
2005 - Heike Holstein (3)
2006 - Anna Merveldt (5)
2007 - Heike Holstein (4)
2008 - Judy Reynolds (1)
2009 - Anna Merveldt (6)
2010 - Anna Medveldt (7)
2011 - Anna Merveldt (8)
2012 - Helen Kearney
2013 - Roland Tong
2014 - Judy Reynolds (2)
2015 - Judy Reynolds (3)
2016 - Judy Reynolds (4)
2017 - Judy Reynolds (5)
2018 - Judy Reynolds (6)
2019 - Judy Reynolds (7)
2020 - Kate Dwyer
2021 - Heike Holstein (5)
2022 - Abi Lyle

Related Links
Abigail Lyle Named The Irish Field Dressage Rider of the Year for 2022