A Distington girl is celebrating after winning her 32nd trophy this year with her pony, Nantcol Sir William.

Nine-year-old Lexi McSherry, who started riding at two years old, was gifted the pony two years ago by Linda Willan, from Penrith, who wanted to make sure that the pony had a good home after being given a few years to live due to serious health issues.

Linda and Lexi’s family are delighted with the pair’s progress as the young rider and pony are bonding well and winning numerous riding competitions.

Sylvia McSherry, Lexi’s mother, said: “To end her season she has won 32 trophies in total and 30 sashes, not to mention all the rosettes which we haven’t counted. Her season has been amazing, she has shown determination and commitment not seen in many adults and her drive to improve all the time and better herself is out of this world. I feel that their performance will improve again by next year.”

Lexi has won a sponsorship deal from RW Breaking and Training, who will contribute towards entry costs so that they can compete at The Royal International Horse Show and Horse of the Year Show.

Ms McSherry added: “It is a very expensive sport so all sponsorship helps greatly. Lexi is lucky to have her family behind her and I am very grateful to her grandma and grandad who are her biggest supporters and sponsors.”

Across the country they have won many Northern Counties Pony Association championships with William in show pony and show hunter classes, qualifying for the pony of the year show held at Warren Farm, Formby, where Lexi won champion show pony of the year, reserve champion show hunter pony of the year, and the chairman’s championship, which saw her competing against adults as well as children.

After qualifying at numerous shows for The Showing Register finals they attended The Scottish Grand Slam Final near Glasgow and won all of their classes, putting them through to the evening performance championships which was dominated by adult competitors. She brought home five championships including overall supreme of the show, £200, a horse rug and a bronze trophy, beating some top show producers in the process.

Throughout the year Lexi has competed and won at many local shows including Cumberland County, Biggar, Penrith, Cartmel, Dumfries, Cockermouth, Dalston, Dufton and Keswick.

At the BSPS on November 17 Lexi was awarded first and champion show pony, first and reserve champion show hunter pony, first novice show pony and first novice show hunter pony. Then overall BSPS points champion 2018.

Riding also runs in the family as Sylvia also used to compete at a high level in showing, being placed at The Royal International Horse show on a few occasions and competing and producing show horses for clients.