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Connacht Tribune

Galway syndicate have winning feeling thanks to feats of mare

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Members of the Monivea-based Lostwelton Syndicate, Darren Collins, Alan Burke, Diarmuid Gavin and Iarlaith Collins, with their moneyspinning mare, Youcantcallherthat. Photo: Joe O'Shaughnessy.

PICTURE the scene. A group of four racing enthusiasts are sitting around a kitchen table trying to come up with a suitable name for a horse that they had just invested in.

The Lostwelton Syndicate from Monivea were in Sean Murphy’s house in Ryehill, but their efforts to christen the three-year-old mare were being constantly frustrated by an ‘outside’ influence.

First cousins Iarlaith and Darren Collins, who also bred the horse, Alan Burke and Diarmuid Gavin thought they had come up with the perfect name in Aquaphobia as she was a little spooked by water, only to hear a voice from the other side of the kitchen; “youcantcallherthat.”

All subsequent names they came up were met with similar disapproval from Peggy Murphy, mother of Sean, the owner of Ryehill Stables and an uncle to the Collins cousins.

“We were filling up the registration forms and coming up with various names, but Peggy kept saying youcantcallherthat, so eventually we kind of gave up and as her saying was ringing in our ears, we just went with that,” reflects syndicate agent Alan Burke.

Whatever about the unusual circumstances behind her naming, Youcantcallherthat has gone on to prove a terrific money-spinner for the North Galway syndicate, winning five times on her debut season over fences.

Yet, the Syndicate had done their best to sell on the horse after two promising Point-to-Point runs. “She finished second to Ms Pafois first time out and then won in Quackertown. We knew she was fairly decent and decided to bring her to the sales in Cheltenham.

“She failed her wind, however, and probably picked up a cold on the boat over. We got no bid for her, although an agent offered us €18,000 outside the ring. We thought she was worth around €30,000, especially as Ms Parfois had been sold for €50,000,” recalls Alan.

Ms Parfois, which had three lengths to spare over Youcantcallherthat in their Point-to-Point clash, ended up with Anthony Honeyball in England and has since won five times, including big races at Cheltenham and Warwick.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Connacht Tribune

Violent incident in Tuam leaves seven hospitalised

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Gardaí are investigating after an incident in Tuam yesterday left seven people injured.

A violent altercation broke out between a large group at the cemetery in Tuam at about 4pm yesterday.

Around 30 Gardaí responded to the incident at the cemetery on the Athenry Road in Tuam, which broke out following two funerals in the area.

Gardaí supported by members from the wider North Western Region and the Regional Armed Support Unit had to physically intervene between parties and disperse those present.

Five males and two females were injured during the course of the incident and were taken to University Hospital Galway with non-life threatening injuries.

A 16-year-old boy was arrested at the scene, as he tried to flee in possession of a knife.

He was taken to Tuam Garda Station and has since been released. A file is being prepared for the Juvenile Liaison Officer.

Gardaí are appealing for any witnesses to this incident or for anyone with any information to contact Tuam Garda Station .

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Connacht Tribune

Anger over ANC ‘snip’

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Agriculture Minister, Charlie McConalogue

ANGRY farmers hit out during last week’s Galway IFA at the Dept. of Agriculture over what they described as their ‘heavy handed tactics’ in docking BEAM penalties from ANC payments made last week.

Although Agriculture Minister, Charlie McConalogue, has apologised for the actions taken by his Department officials, delegates who attended last Thursday’s night county IFA meeting in the Claregalway Hotel, hit out at what happened.

In some cases, according to Galway IFA Chairperson, Anne Mitchell, farmers who had already paid back the BEAM penalty also had the money deducted from their ANC (Areas of Natural Constraint) payments made last week.

Many farmers received ‘a shock in the post’ when their ANC payments were hit with the deductions of penalties from the BEAM scheme – earlier they had been warned of interest penalties if any balances weren’t repaid within 30 days.

At the core of the problem was the inclusion of a 5% stock numbers reduction in the BEAM scheme (Beef Exceptional Aid Measure) aimed at helping to compensate farmers for a drop-off in beef prices between September, 2018 and May, 2019.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

 

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Connacht Tribune

Siblings find each other – and their Connemara roots – after 80 years

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Reunited...Pat and Miceál McKeown outside their mother Síle’s birthplace in Carna.

By Erin Gibbons

A family separated for over 80 years was reunited at the end of an emotional journey in Connemara last weekend – thanks to DNA testing and the expert help of heritage researchers.

Pat McKeown, who lives in Staffordshire in the UK, is the daughter of Síle Gorham from Roisín Na Mainiach, Carna – but she was given up for adoption and reared for a time in a Belfast Mother and Baby Home.

Now, at the age of 81, she found her roots – returning to her mother’s native place for the first time last weekend, in the company of her long-lost brother Micheál.

It was an emotional end to a lifelong search for her roots that even led her to hire a private detective to try and locate her family and to discover her name.

All of this proved unsuccessful – and she had effectively given up her search when she was contacted unexpectedly by a man called Miceál McKeown, who turned out to be her brother.

Micheál – an artist and sculptor – and his daughter Orla had made the connection through DNA testing, after Miceál too had set out to discover more about his own roots.

That revealed that Síle Gorham had married Michael McKeown in 1939, and Síle went on to have three more children named Áine, Séan and Miceál.

Pat visited Connemara last weekend for the first time to learn about her mother Síle and the Connemara ancestry which she feels was robbed from her for her entire 81 years.

She was accompanied by Miceál, his wife Rosemary, daughter Orla and son-in-law Rueben Keogh.

Read the full story in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now – or you can download the digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie

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