(l-r) George White, Imogen White, Izzy Kirby, Lucy Brown and Izzy Gough
(l-r) George White, Imogen White, Izzy Kirby, Lucy Brown and Izzy Gough

Young horse riders make prestigious national finals

21 January 2020

RiponGrammar School’s talented young riders have made it to the national finals of a prestigious equestrian competition at Hickstead arena for the second year running.

Three teams of students from across all year groups competed in the challenging qualifying round of the National School Equestrian Association Championships.

Siblings Sophie and Izzy Bean, aged 12 and 15, from Lower Dunsforth, and Imogen and George White, 12 and 14, from Ampleforth, along with Izzy Kirby, 14, from Richmond, have all made it to the finals, which will be held at the famous Hickstead Sussex showground on May 23-25.

One of a small number of state schools taking part, they beat high-performing teams from independent schools throughout the North at the qualifying event, held at the Northallerton Equestrian Centre.

Now they will face teams from all over the country, including Millfield School and Marlborough College, in the finals.

RGS art teacher and keen horse rider Fiona Henson, who helps organise the team, commented:

It is a great achievement to make it to Hickstead for the second year in a row. It was a difficult course and a hugely tough competition and we are very proud of them all.

Last year, the school’s team came an impressive ninth in the finals out of around 100 competitors and now Mrs Henson is hoping that experience will give them the confidence to do even better this year.

Mrs Henson said:

Getting to Hickstead has really spurred them all on. Their performance last year was awesome.

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