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Procurement of Horses

Procurement of Horses

The Army Equitation School procures horses by the following means:

  • Purchase
  • Lease
  • Patron

Horse Purchase Board

The Horse Purchase Board assess the suitability of all potential horses as part of the procurement process. The members of the Board are:

Officer Commanding Army Equitation School

  • 2 IC Army Equitation School
  • Col E.V. Campion (Retd)
  • A current Riding Officer
  • Principal Officer Executive Branch DoD


Since the history of the Army Equitation School a quantity of horses have been donated to the school by such people as Sir John Galvin, Lady Moria Forbes and presently Mr. Maurice Cassidy and Captain Eoghan Lavelle (retired). Mr. Cassidy has placed four event horses with the school to date. Patronage of the Equitation School is a most generous and sporting gesture supporting the school and the Irish Horse for which we are most grateful.

Leasing Horses

Presently there are two horses leased to the Army Equitation School by their owners, Bonmahon Master Blue & Tullbawn. The owners are paid an annual lease fee for the competition life of the horse. In addition to the lease fee there are in-built performance bonuses in the lease agreement.

The leasing concept is of great mutual benefit to both the Army Equitation School and the horse owner, in that, for an annual fee, the owner places his or her horse with the Equitation School. During the lease period the horse is both trained and campaigned at a gradual pace. The Army Equitation School is very proud of its training facilities and we would boast on our ability and expertise to maximise the potential of the horse.

The leasing of horses to the Equitation School is a ‘win-win’ situation for both the Equitation School and the horse owner as it is a means of procuring horses for the Equitation School while the owner retains ownership of the horse, which, with a much enhanced value, is returned to the owner at the end of its’ competition life.

This leasing system is ideally suited for mares and stallions. The Equitation School encourages people who may have potential star horses to consider leasing such horses to the Equitation School for their competitive career.

Sourcing of Horses

The mission of The Army Equitation School is to advertise the Irish Sport Horse through participation in international competition at the highest level. The demands of the modern sport of Showjumping and Three Day Eventing require the Irish Sport Horse to possess certain qualities. The type of horse sought by The Army Equitation School will possess the following qualities;

General Qualities

  • A desire and ability to jump fences CAREFULLY.
  • Confirmation that will allow the horse to maximise its’ competition life. The horse should be in proportion with a sloping shoulder, good length of neck that is NOT inverted, normalto short back and strong hindquarters. It is of course true that if a horse cannot jump, these qualities are wasted. Nevertheless, care needs to be taken when breeding to ensure the breeding stock chosen are not pre-ordained to pass on serious confirmation deficiencies.
  • The horse must be sound and is subject to a veterinary examination
  • In most cases a horse with size, at least 16.1 hh is desirable
  • Length of stride is important but equally as important is the horses ability to shorten when required (this is directly related to age, experience and stage of horses training)
  • A good temperament and amenable to training and control
  • A good jumping TECHNIQUE. The horse should be able to fold its’ knees, bascule over the fence and bend its’ hocks
  • A horse with SCOPE is a very important asset to a jumper
  • Three good PACES are important for the Eventing horse and an ability to lengthen and shorten within all three paces.