A KINGTON equestrian team is riding high after landing several surprise successes at a seven-school tournament.

The Lady Hawkins’ School group was the only county side, and one of only two comprehensives, to attend the Warwickshire College event but nevertheless returned with an impressive 10 rosettes.

Teacher Andy Taylor said triumphs including third place in the opening class, 6th and 7th place in the second class and 15th place out of 55 in the fourth class were “almost impossible” given the five-strong team’s number.

“At the start of the day I said ‘our main aim is to compete, we want to get everyone around in one piece and enjoy the day, and we want to learn from this experience’,” he said. “But the team had other ideas and produced a stunning performance to record what can only be described as an impossible achievement.”

At the end of the day all riders - Elliot Barnes, Holly Preece, Amy Betts, Sophie Eckley and Georgia Park - had at least one clear round after former Lady Hawkins’ student and 2004 Olympic Games gold medallist Leslie Law also wished them luck.

“The team was captained to a very high standard by Holly Preece, and Sophie Eckley did exceptionally well on her debut for the team, especially as she was on a new horse that she had only be riding for three days,” Mr Taylor added.

“It was a fantastic day - Herefordshire should be extremely proud of what these youngsters have achieved.”