A talented athlete has competed for the second year running with the North of England team in the gruelling event of tetrathlon.
Richmond School and Sixth Form College student Laura Mathias missed out on the finals of the National Schools’ Equestrian Association Eventers’ Challenge Championships at Hickstead to compete instead in Warwickshire.
Tetrathlon involves four disciplines – a 20-jump cross-country, a three-minute swim, 1,500m running cross-country and pistol target shooting. Her team came a creditable fifth after a tough competition which saw Laura take a fall.
Year 9 student Laura has competed in tetrathlon for the past eight years after being introduced to the sport by the Zetland Hunt Pony Club.
She had qualified for the National Schools’ Equestrian Association Eventers’ Challenge Championships at Hickstead with other riders from Richmond School but the dates clashed with the Junior Regional Tetrathlon event, where she was one of just 12 team members from across the whole of the North, from the Scottish borders to Hull and Blackpool.
“I love it, especially the riding and the swimming,” said Laura, 13, of Melsonby, near Richmond, who trains seven nights a week.
“Next year will be tougher still as there are only two places for girls in the squad for an international competition – and I really want to be part of that.”
Team manager Kirstie Thornton said: “Laura is a prodigious talent and thoroughly deserved her places on both teams. The fact she trains seven days a week shows how committed she is to her sport and such dedication can’t fail to take her a long way in life.”