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Lancaster girl, 4, and her pony to compete in world class horse show final

Grace Speak and Mountain Gale

A little girl from Lancaster and her Welsh pony will be the youngest rider and the oldest horse in a top international equestrian final.

Four-year-old Grace Speak and her Welsh pony Mountain Gale will take part in the London International Horse Show at the ExCel venue in the capital this weekend.

Grace and Mountain Gale, aged 30, have qualified to contest the finals of the Agria Senior Showing and Dressage League (SSADL) on Saturday.

The class forms part of the programme at an event where many of the world’s best show jumping and dressage riders compete.

“This is Grace’s first season showing and she absolutely loves it,” says her mother Lucy.

“Gale is an absolutely superstar — the best kids’ pony in the world — and she thrives in big arenas, with music blaring. She just flicks her toes and pricks her ears.

“Finishing in the top five would be a dream, but we just want a happy child and a beautiful photograph."

Grace, a member of the Lancaster Pony Club, is the fourth child who has learned to ride on Mountain Gale within her family — her three cousins also learned on her — and she tries to model her riding on our late Queen Elizabeth II.

Vicki Wentworth, chief executive of Agria UK, animal insurers, said: "We can’t wait to see Grace and Gale in the huge international arena at the London International and hope they have an absolutely brilliant and truly memorable day.”

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