Matilda Graesser says having fun will be her main goal when she competes in a national school equestrian competition later this year.
Graesser, 13, will represent Victoria at the Australian Interschool Championships to be held at the Sydney International Equestrian Centre in late September.
It is the first time in three years the competition will be held after COVID-19 restrictions halted both the 2020 and 2021 events.
The Emmanuel College year eight student, who competed at the championships in 2019, said it was exciting to learn she had made the squad. Graesser explained she had kept up her competition scores throughout the year, with a leader board determining who would make the cut.
"It was over the season, from February to May and all the different events added up," she said.
The Warrnambool Pony Club rider will compete alongside Simply Max, one of her more experienced horses.
"I got him in November last year, so we're quite new," she said. "He does have a bit of personality; he loves his job and loves his food."
Graesser and Simply Max will compete in eventing, which consists of dressage and two different rounds of jumping; showjumping and cross country. She said she would need to learn the dressage test leading up to the championships and was looking forward to meeting her teammates when she travels to Werribee later this month for training.
"We'll meet up as a team and train a bit," she said.
Following the conclusion of the current season, Graesser said Max had been enjoying a break before the championships.
"And I've got some other young horses who are coming up," she said.
Graesser was the 2021 Pony Club Australia Sub Junior National Champion, beating out 10 of the country's best 13 and under riders for the award last year.
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