Griffiths heads to China with Pony club

By Andrew Johnston

THREE members of pony clubs from across the region have earned the trip of a lifetime.

An opportunity from Pony Club Australia saw around 30 children from across Australia earn the opportunity to represent Australia at different pony clubs around the world.

Cohuna's Olivia Griffiths made the journey to the Seabiscuit Riding Centre in Suqian City in Jiangsu Province China.

Olivia's mother Wendy said it was a fantastic opportunity for the 15-year-old.

"An opportunity came for her to head overseas as a representative of Australia," she said.

"There was an application process where she could explain why she should go. Pony Club Australia were looking for people who would represent Australia in the best way."

Having had a lot of success in competition in her time with Pony Club, Griffiths was an easy choice, earning the opportunity to make the trip.

"There were 30 odd kids going to all different places as representatives, with four participants and a coach on her trip."

Making her way to the Golden Saddle Equestrian Centre in Guilin, China was Bamwam Extension club member Charlie Alberni.

The 14-year-old St Joesph's student has been a part of the pony club for five years, competing in dressage, combine training and horse trial most weekends of the year.

Like Griffiths, Alberni participated in a series of riding clinics and demonstrations, after being chosen through the application process.

Amara Hawkes, also 14, earned her opportunity to go overseas after a strong showing at the Bamawm Extension club.

After 10 years of riding, Hawkes has ambition to compete in international equestrian.

Earning the opportunity in July, Hawkes will make her trip to July in late September, and said she is most looking forward to sharing her experience with young riders as the brand of pony club continues to grow.