NATIONAL SCHOOLS EQUESTRIAN CHAMPIONSHIPS 2017
A record number of 13 riders and 15 horses travelled all the way to Buckinghamshire for 4 days of intense and nail biting competition against a huge number of other schools. To have this number of National qualifications was already a big achievement, which we had worked hard for all year long. Sedbergh were one of a few schools to have pupils competing at every height from 70cm to 1m 10 and in every discipline from dressage, arena eventing to show jumping which shows how strong and multi-talented our team are.
Their high standard of riding is something which cannot be taught overnight and requires a huge amount of dedication, graft and nerve. They have been preparing for this level of competing from a young age, as seasoned competitors and certainly need a level head. This event is certainly the highlight of the school sporting calendar for many pupils who are so passionate about competing their horse. We were proud of every pupil who represented the school over these tricky and testing courses and they included Laura Holley, Scarlett Holden, Grace Gale, Alicia Newing, Alice Moralee, Daisy Page, Jack Rigal, Katie Gill, Tara Barker, Georgia Turner, Darcey Wilkinson and Elizabeth Gale. We would also like to thank Olivia Murray, Jemima Sanderson and Miles Thomas, who all helped teams qualify for classes but were not able to be with us.
All the pupils and parents camped on site and the Sedbergh spirit was definitely evident. The team camaraderie was high with our own Sedbergh marquee, team dinners, drinks and nibbles evenings with other northern schools. The logistics and work which went into these 4 days was mind blowing, especially for Elizabeth Gale who ate her breakfast and lunch whilst on one of her three horses, as her schedule was back to back with many clashes. The team were also glad to see the arrival our Captain, Darcey Wilkinson at midnight after a challenging journey, which involved the M40 being shut north and south bound so her horse could change to the recovery lorry.
We were absolutely delighted with our results over the four days with tired pupils after a long half of term. To get in the top 8 is no mean feat when classes contain approximately 150 – 200 riders. A special mention must go to Laura Holley, Darcey Wilkinson, Elizabeth Gale and Jack Rigal who all gained individual top 8 places. Sedbergh is certainly making an impact in the country, as a strong equine contingent.
Dressage Team: 3rd in country out of 28 teams: Darcey Wilkinson (C), Georgia Turner (R), Jack Rigal (W), Laura Holley (L)
Novice Individual Dressage: 5th in country: Jack Rigal (W)
Elementary Individual Dressage: 6th in country: Darcey Wilkinson (C)
70cm SJ Team – 4th in country: Alicia Newing (R), Grace Gale (R), Scarlett Holden (Prep), Laura Holley (L)
70cm Arena Eventing Team- 7th in country: Laura Holley (L), Scarlett Holden (Prep), Alicia Newing (R), Grace Gale (R)
80cm & 90cm Individual Arena Eventing: 7th in country: Laura Holley (L)
90cm Arena Eventing Team: 7th in country: Elizabeth Gale (R), Georgia Turner (R), Alice Moralee (R), Tara Barker (L)
1m Individual Arena Eventing: 7th in country: Darcey Wilkinson
1m 10 Individual Arena Eventing: 6th in country: Elizabeth Gale
It was great to see our Sponsors, Doodle Jumps, down there who supplied the beautiful rustic arena eventing jumps for the main international indoor arena. Also thank you to our team of fabulous parents who groomed, cooked, cleaned and drove lorries hundreds of miles to make this happen. You certainly were the dream team and I know it took me a week to recover from these 4 days.
Faye Barker, Team Manager