Equine

Charlee and Jenna Mason to represent Pony Club Australia in China

By Rodney Woods

Tocumwal Pony Club’s Charlee and Jenna Mason will travel to China for separate pony club meets this year, representing Pony Club Australia.

Jenna, 13, left on August 6 for Beijing, where she will compete in showjumping 80cm and 100cm and also in games before she returns on August 15.

Her older sister Charlee, 15, will leave for Guilin, in China’s south, on October 22 and will return on November 1, after competing in a tri-nations tournament against New Zealand and China.

The girls’ father Greg Mason explained how they got the opportunity to compete in China.

‘‘The girls were nominated for this world competition through a resume-type process highlighting their equestrian achievements, gradings and competitions,’’ Mr Mason said.

‘‘Referees were then contacted prior to selections to make sure they had the qualities expected of an Australian ambassador.’’

Mr Mason said both girls had achieved recent success.

‘‘Both girls have been on the back of a horse since before they could walk as both parents are also mad keen horsey people,’’ he said.

‘‘Both joined Pony Club Victoria when they were five and six and have been active competitors ever since.

‘‘Both girls made it to the state finals for showjumping this year and both girls placed.’’

Mr Mason said Charlee and Jenna were excited for their upcoming competition.

‘‘As excited as Jenna is to have this opportunity she is also a little nervous having never met her horse, her coach, Michelle Newham from Londonderry in NSW, or her fellow teammates Chesney Dawson from Wagin in WA, Lizzie Daly from Lillico in Victoria, and Tara Seppelt who is also from Londonderry, NSW,’’ he said.

‘‘She is also looking forward to experiencing the culture of China and seeing how the pony club movement in China operates in comparison to over here.

‘‘Charlee is also very excited to have this opportunity.

‘‘She is looking forward to being able to represent Australia and work with her teammates and horses.

‘‘She is also looking forward to getting the opportunity to stay with a Chinese family and learn their culture and see the sights of Guilin.’’