Teenager gets call-up for national team

Suzie Barwise-Munro with her pony Hearsay.
Suzie Barwise-Munro with her pony Hearsay.

A TALENTED teenage rider has been specially selected to battle it out in a prestigious equestrian event, which will see her jet off around the world.

Suzanne Barwise-Munro will represent Great Britain (GB) & Northern Ireland in the International Mounted Games Competition against select sides from America, Canada and host nation Australia.

The contest forms part of the 2012 International Mounted Games exchange, which takes place Down Under in April.

And 15-year-old Suzanne, who lives at Bilton Banks near Shilbottle, is one of just five riders to make the GB team.

“It feels really good to be called up. I didn’t expect it. I am really excited,” said a delighted Suzanne, who is a member of the Northumberland-based Percy Hunt Pony Club.

The exchange is an annual event, with the host country rotating between the nations involved.

As part of this year’s meet, the riders will get to tour parts of Australia, including Sydney.

Suzanne will be joined in the GB ranks by Catriona Wallace from Angus Pony Club, Rory Capel of Devon and Somerset Pony Club, Suzi Williams from Flint and Denbigh Hunt Pony Club and Jennifer Gregg of North Down Pony Club.

Looking ahead to the exchange, Suzanne, who has been riding since she was two, said: “It will be a great experience and I want to ride to the best of my ability. I am proud to be representing my pony club and Great Britain.”

The call-up adds to an impressive list of equestrian achievements for Suzanne, who competed on the England team in 2011 at Windsor and in Ireland, as well as being part of the Percy branch tetrathlon team which won the national championships last August in Gloucestershire.

Suzanne, who attends Newcastle’s Dame Allan’s School, thanked Percy Hunt Pony Club District Commissioner (DC) Alison Weddell and former DC of the Percy branch, Sue Maitland, for their support.

Alison said: “As Suzanne’s games trainer over the past four years, she has been a pleasure to train, has worked extremely hard to gain the success which she has achieved and has shown tremendous team spirit and commitment to her sport.

“She thoroughly deserves the international call-up and I am confident that she will represent Team GB very well in Australia.”