HORSE Sport Ireland, the Governing Body for equestrian sport in Ireland, has commented on the news, featured in the Irish Field, that two clones of the great Irish stallion Cruising will be available to Irish Sport Horse breeders in 2015.
Horse Sport Ireland also operates the Irish Sport Horse Studbook.
The McCann family of Hartwell Stud in Co Kildare, who bred and owned the world-renowned show jumping sire, agreed to have DNA samples taken from the horse, who died last September at the age of 29.
They now have two Cruising clones – Cruising Arish and Cruising Encore.
It is understood to be the first time a horse has been cloned in Ireland.
Horse Sport Ireland CEO Damian McDonald said that the Sport Horse sector has always embraced the use of science to breed better horses. Techniques such as Artificial Insemination and latterly, Embryo Transfer, are in wide use in the sport horse sector.
“The international Governing Body, the Federation Equestre Internationale (FEI), allow clones to compete and we altered the rules of the Irish Sport Horse Studbook in recent years to permit the registration of clones,” he said.
“Cloning won’t be something everyone will embrace but it is another option for breeders and Cruising’s genetics are traditionally Irish, which is important to a cohort of breeders,” he concluded.
Cruising, who jumped on numerous Nations’ Cups for Ireland and finished second in the 1999 World Cup final, sired many famous show jumpers and eventers, including Flexible, Mo Chroí, Mr Medicott and Mr Cruise Control.