IT’S their sixth consecutive win and Calrossy Anglican School shows no signs of slowing down.
Competing at the North West Equestrian Expo in Tamworth, the school took home Champion School, Champion Polocrosse Team, Champion Team with four riders and the top four sporting riders.
The school doesn’t have an equestrian centre, which makes their success twice as sweet said equestrian manager Kathy DeJong.
“A lot of our students are on Australian Stock Horses, that makes for a very versatile horse – people say that our team is one of the most versatile out there and we are competitive in every discipline,” she said.
“We really have the parents doing most of the work behind the scenes, they prepare all the horses.
“Our parents are so passionate, I think the other schools are quite surprised we do so well.”
With just six points between top rider Sophie Maynes and Lara DeJong, for the kids it’s more about friendship and fun than competition.
Year 11 student Sophie said she was brought up with riding for a young age so horses are second nature.
"My parents like me doing it, it’s fun and there’s a great atmosphere when you get to do it with your friends,” she said.
“It was pretty tough and there’s a lot of competitive riders – every afternoon I come home from school to ride and practice, I’ve had to be really motivated.
“But it was good, all the hard work paid off.”
Riding alongside her best friends, Sophie, Lara, Isabelle Burke and Holly Turnbull took out the Champion Team of Four Riders Award.
This year was the first time the school took home the Hirst Family Trophy, awarded to the best scoring polocrosse team in the A grade final.
The inter-school event saw just under 70 schools compete from all over Australia.
In the cross country events, Hamish Palmer and Hunter Dalzell placed second in the 13 and 15 age divisions, with Hamish going on to win a Horsemanship Award.
What impresses school principal David Smith most is the whole team approach.
“It’s very much on the top four riders but everyone works together and celebrates success together,” he said.
“The whole community worked together, our kids know the kids from other schools and sometimes it is just a golden run.
“The important thing is that they enjoy it, it’s not just the results that matter but the fact the kids work hard and get a lot out of it - win, lose or draw.”
The North West Equestrian Expo, also known as the Coona Expo, was held in Coonabarabran over five days from May 31 to June 4.