THREE talented equestrian figures from North East Wales will be testing themselves against the best in Europe over the summer.

Thirteen-year-old Thomas Courtney and Sam Courtney, 15, from Wrexham, plus Ceiriog Valley’s Ffion Roberts, 14, will complete for Wales at the under-15 European Mounted Games Championships in France.

The event will take place in August and the determined Welsh team will join the other European nations in competing at the Olympic Equestrian Park.

The trio all headed to Chepstow for the trials and they were successful in gaining selection for the six-strong line-up.

Sam and Thomas both attend St Joseph’s High School, in Wrexham.

Thomas said: “My pony is Spice and she is just the best!!! This is my first year riding her.

“We have owned her for six years but I’ve had to wait this long to pinch her off my brother! Spice loves games but is also very good at jumping and loves doing x country.

“I ride for The Wynnstay Pony Club games team. I love games, it’s a real team sport and I have made so many friends from all over the country.

“When I’m not riding I play football for my local football team, Borras Park Rangers U13s. When I’m not doing that I go and watch Manchester City and Wrexham AFC.

“I’m am so excited to have been selected to compete for Wales, it’s a huge honour! Spice and I are going to love riding into the arena flying the flag for Wales.”

Sam, whose pony is Harry, added: “I really enjoy doing mounted games, it’s a very exciting, fast team sport. My favourite race is the bottle race.

“I am very proud to have been selected to ride for Wales this year at both the Home International and the European Championships. We will be travelling to France in August this year to compete against many other countries. It will be the first time I have competed abroad and to ride in France at an Olympic venue just after the Olympics is going to be very special.

“I am looking forward to doing lots of fundraising to help get myself and my pony across to France. I enjoy most sports and I am a sports ambassador for my school.

“When I’m not competing on Harry I play football for my local club Borras Park Rangers. I have a season ticket for Manchester City, I enjoy supporting them at the Etihad stadium, I was even lucky enough to go to Istanbul and watch them win the Champions League Final last year.

“I also like following Wrexham AFC as it’s my local club. It’s great to see them doing so well.”

Ffion, who is a student at Ysgol Dinas Bran, in Llangollen, said: “I am over the moon to be selected to represent my country at the European Championships held at Parc Equestre in France in August - the home of the Olympics 2024.

“My pony Jem is a 19 year old 13.2hh grey super star who I think the world of, she has taught me so much and is very special to me.

“She has a brilliant personality and loves Polos and Kit-Kats!! This is an extra special year for me as I have also been selected to represent Wales at Royal Windsor Horse Show in May as travelling reserve.

“I have been competing in mounted games since I was nine and I am proud to be part of Berwyn & Dee Pony Club which I absolutely love, I have met some of my best friends who share my love of horses.

“I really am looking forward to representing my country and riding abroad for the first time with... Jem, It really is a dream come true, I can’t wait to share the experience with my team mates and have lots of fun.”