ONE of the Gunnedah Pony Club’s brightest young stars is set to make a major impression on this year’s Sydney Royal Easter Show.
Representing zone five, Claudia will battle it out against some of the state’s best riders in events such as hack and pairs.
“I was selected to go to the Royal for my show riding but I chose just to focus on my pony club events this year,” McConnaughty said.
“I’d say that Hack is maybe my favourite event, so hopefully I can do well.”
For the 12-year-old Barradine native, this year’s event won’t just be the first time she will compete at the Royal, but the first time she will visit the annual showcase.
“I’d really like to ride professionally when I grow up,” McConnaughty said.
“My goal is to go and ride at as many Royal Easter Shows as I can and I am super excited to go to my first one.”
Making the trip from Barradine to Gunnedah regularly, McConnaughty believes the Gunnedah Pony Club is “a special place”.
“We did go to the Barradine club when I first started when I was three, but then we made the move over here and it has been really good,” she said.
“Everything you can do with horses is fun to me, I mean for example my current horse Floss and I have started working really well together.
“It’s really nice and it has been a bit of a learning curve for us.
“But I would say our main goal at the Royal is to do our best and have fun.”
Claudia’s mother Anne said the trip to this year’s show would be “a memorable one” for her family.
“I think given it is the first time Claudia is going it will be very special,” she said.
“Not only that, she has been working very hard preparing for it.
“Every two weeks we have come from Barradine to Tamworth to train with the whole team and it has taken a lot of dedication.
“I can’t wait to see her have fun and watch that dedication pay off.”
- The 2019 Sydney Royal Easter Show will run from April 12-24.