Rising equestrian star is a name to watch

A RISING young RGS equestrian star has been nominated for a national Junior Rider of the Year title.

Alice Binks, from Dalton, near Thirsk, was placed sixth out of a strong class of 20 in intermediate show riding at this year’s Horse of the Year show recently.

She also won her class at the Royal International Horse Show at Hickstead, claiming the reserve champion title for two consecutive years, and won the supreme intermediate champion title at the British Show Pony Society Summer Championships this summer.

As a result of all her successes, she has now been nominated for Junior Rider of the Year in this year’s Showing World Awards, which celebrates British showing success at a glamorous awards evening and gala dinner attended by top names in the field.

Alice took up riding when she was just three years old and began competing when she was nine, travelling all over the country to compete in events.

Since 2015, she has qualified for the Horse of the Year (HOYS) and the Royal International Horse Show every year.

Affiliated to the Craig Elenor Equestrian show team, her horse’s show name is Roseberry Fascinator and her stable name is Hatty: “We bought her in the Summer of 2021 as a four year old. Amazingly, we qualified for HOYS on our first attempt and at the final were placed eighth and we won the Royal International Horse Show and stood reserve champion.”

Alice, who hopes to study medicine at university, juggles her A-level work with her riding and tending to Hatty: “Owning a horse comes with hours of responsibility, not just riding and schooling them regularly, but grooming, feeding and mucking out.

During the summer months, she also travels all over the country to compete at qualifying shows such as the Royal Highland Show, Royal Windsor, Royal Three Counties and the Great Yorkshire Show.

In addition, Alice, who works as a qualified pool lifeguard, is involved in lots of other sports, including netball, rugby and hockey: “I love playing netball in the school team and for an adult team in the Harrogate league. Last year, I played for Grangetown in the regional U16 team and national squad and also for Ripon Rockets U16s.

“I have represented North Yorkshire and a development squad for Leeds Rhinos and recently completed an umpiring course. I play for Thirsk Ladies Hockey team.”

Her ambition is to win the Horse of the Year Show and gain a hat-trick win at the Royal International Horse Show.

“I feel incredibly lucky to be able to own and ride such a fabulous horse like Hatty and one day it would be fabulous to have a foal from her!” 

*Pictured, top, Alice with her Summer Championships trophy, first presented in 1951