Off to Hickstead, one of Barnard Castle School’s successful equestrian teams

Posted: 15th February 2023

Young showjumpers are firmly in the saddle after qualifying for a prestigious national competition.

Barnard Castle School’s equestrian team members are off to Hickstead, the spiritual home of the sport.

Pupils secured their coveted places at the NSEA Hickstead County Championships in May after a string of successful performances in Northallerton winning all the Durham County classes.

The All England Jumping Course of Hickstead is one of the premier equestrian venues in the world with almost every renowned show jumper, horse and rider, competing there at some stage of their careers.

The NSEA, established in 1991, is the recognised body for equestrianism in schools throughout the UK, staging competitions for team and individual riders.

An independent partner of the British Horse Society, it works closely with other British Equestrian Federation member bodies on projects to provide opportunities for inter-school equestrian sport.

The Northallerton qualifying event saw:

Barney becoming County Durham Champions in the 70cm with team members Zara Dobson,

Sophie Richardson, Zara Martin and Freya Gibbon, who also came first as an individual rider.

In the 80cm class, Freya Gibbon, Zara Dobson, Georgia Hooley, Zara Scott Priestley came first with Zara Scott Priestley taking the individual county champion title.

At 90cm Team Barney came first thanks to the efforts of riders Lily Penny Smith, Zara Scott Priestley, Lavender Lawson and Georgia Hooley, who was also first in the individual.

The 100cm class saw Barney’s Lily Penny Smith take first place on Wil Cut the Mustard while Ruby Smith was first in the 110cm event on Anytime Z.

Barney team manager Kelly Smith said: “We are still a relatively young team, but the BCS riders have grown in confidence and results competing in the NSEA over the past few years.

“This is the second year in a row we have had teams qualify for NSEA County Championships at Hickstead. Five of the BCS riders have also qualified individually.

“With the Championships in May, we have a few months of training and competing to focus and be prepared with aspirations of returning home with rosettes. I am very proud of all our riders and their commitment to competing and representing BCS with pride and confidence.”

Categories: Barnard Castle School School News