Member of the local Avon Valley Pony Club, Annie Herzer, has been selected to represent Australia in the International Mounted Games Under 17’s World Team Championship.
This international competition happens every year. On the 17 th of November Annie and the Australian team will be travelling to Auckland, New Zealand to compete against the best riders from other countries on borrowed ponies.
Annie has been riding for Avon Valley Show Jumping and Pony Club for 12 years now. She began playing games at age 6. Since then she has gone on the win local, state, national and international mounted games titles. She is currently the two time Under 18’s state individual champion and the four times pairs state champion.
In 2016, Annie was a member of the western Australian team and won the national championship title for the pony club national championship. Last year she rode on the Australian team for the Pony Club International Mounted Games Exchange and was victorious.
Annie has travelled to Sydney in early September and to Nihill in Victoria in October to compete in National competitions with her Australian teammates which were used as training for the World Championships. Annie has also been training at home and competing in local competitions.
Mounted Games is a fast paced, action packed sport with riders and mounts displaying an incredible amount of fitness, training and skill. Riders must be athletic and strong with wonderful horsemanship skills and great hand to eye coordination. Ponies are required to be nimble, fast, strong and brave but most of all must have a great brain.
Mounted Games was the idea of the Duke of Edinburgh, Prince Philip. He wanted a competition for children who could not afford an expensive, well-bred pony. So in 1957 The director of the Horse of the Year show, Sir Mike Ansell devised a competition.
Then at Harringay Arena in North London, England, the first Mounted Games Championship for the Prince Philip Cup was held. The popularity of the sport grew and inspired Norman Patrick to expand the sport and allow a larger participation. Today mounted games is played in twenty two countries across the world.
This exciting equestrian sport can be enjoyed by everyone and spectators do not require specialist “horsey” knowledge - just a desire to be entertained.