Field Marshal Montgomery ran out comfortable winners in grade one at the 72nd All Ireland Pipe Band Championships in Lurgan Park on Saturday.
Field Marshal’s domination of piping and ensemble was enough to secure wins in both the MSR and Medley selection competitions and claim first place overall with four points to spare from second place St Laurence O’Toole.
Field Marshal won the prize for best pipes with St Laurence scooping a drum corps and bass section double.
Completing the top four in grade one were the Police Service of Northern Ireland and Ravara.
Grade two was a close-run affair with Manorcunningham pipping Closkelt to first place on ensemble preference. Manorcunningham also lifted prizes for best drums and bass section with Closkelt winning the piping award. Annsborough and Thiepval Memorial completed the prize list.
Marlacoo & District were comfortable winners in grade 3a where they held a four-point margin over New Ross & District. St Joseph’s, who also claimed the prize for best drums, were placed third with Drumlough, winners of the prize for best pipes, in fourth. Best bass section went to Upper Crossgare.
Quinn Memorial swept the prize lists in grade 3b with a performance that saw them lift prizes for best pipes, drums and bass section. Battlehill, Clogher & District and Tralee Pipes and Drums completed the top four.
McDonald Memorial ran out victors in grade 4a, lifting prizes for best pipes and bass section for good measure. Second place went St Mary’s Derrytrasna with the Co Antrim duo of Cullybackey and McNeilstown third and fourth respectively. The drumming prize went to Tullylagan.
The visiting Scotch College Pipes and Drums from Melbourne, Australia missed out on a placing in the prizes but did collect the award for best M&D.
Kildoag have been strong performers in grade 4b this season and that continued with an All Ireland title. Bessbrook Crimson Arrow were second and lifted the prize for best pipes ahead of Lisnamulligan and Sgt Walker Memorial. The prizes for best drum corps and bass section were won by Cullen.
All Ireland championship winning drum majors were Louis Anderson, Jamie Cupples, Kathryn McKeown and Jason Price.
Grade 1: 1, Field Marshal Montgomery, also 1st medley, 1st MSR, best pipes and 2nd drums; 2, St Laurence O’Toole, best drums medley and MSR, and bass section, second pipes; 3, PSNI, also M&D; 4, Ravara.
Grade 2: 1, Manorcunningham, also best drums and bass section; 2, Closkelt, also best pipes; 3, Annsborough; 4, Thiepval Memorial, also M&D.
Grade 3a: 1, Marlacoo & District; 2, New Ross & District; 3, St Joseph’s Clondalkin, also best drums; 4, Drumlough, also best pipes. Best bass: Upper Crossgare. Best M&D: Raffrey.
Grade 3b: 1, Quinn Memorial, also best pipes, drums and bass section; 2, Battlehill; 3, Clogher & District, also M&D; 4, Tralee Pipes and Drums.
Grade 4a: 1, McDonald Memorial, also best pipes and bass section; 2, St Mary’s Derrytrasna; 3, Cullybackey; 4, McNeilstown. Best drums: Tullylagan. Best M&D: Scotch College Pipes and Drums, Melbourne.
Grade 4b: 1, Kildoag; 2, Bessbrook Crimson Arrow, also best pipes; 3, Lisnamulligan; 4, Sgt Walker Memorial. Best drums and bass section: Cullen. Best M&D: Wicklow.
Adult: 1, Jason Price (Ravara); 2, Andrea McKeown (Battlehill); 3, David Brownlee (Derryclavin); 4, Alicia Dickson (Matt Boyd Memorial); 5, Lauren Hanna (Lomond and Clyde).
Juvenile: 1, Kathryn McKeown (Battlehill); 2, Emma Barr (Field Marshal Montgomery); 3, Emily Crooks (McNeillstown); 4, James Kennedy (Closkelt); 5, Jason Nicholl (Tullylagan).
Junior: 1, Jamie Cupples (Aughintober); 2, Rachel Lowry (Armaghbreague); 3, Abigail Wenlock (Shotts and Dykehead Caledonia); 4, Kathy Hunter (Manorcunningham); 5, Rebecca Hamilton (Tullylagan).
Novice: 1, Louis Anderson (Crozier Memorial); 2, Benjamin Walker (Battlehill); 3, Leanne Crooks (Syerla & District); 4, Louise Smiton (Closkelt); 5, Hannah Donald (R.S.P.B.A.