Former Rydal Penrhos pupil Georgia Wilson’s fantastic Paralympic achievements were celebrated in her home town of Betws-yn-Rhos.
Georgia Wilson, who attended the Rydal Penrhos from 2007 to 2012, won two bronze medals for Team GB in the Para-Dressage in Tokyo this summer. Her medal-winning efforts, in the Grade II Championship Test and Grade II Freestyle Test respectively, represent a sensational follow up to her victory at the 2019 FEI European Championships.
Georgia’s success is remarkable given she was forced to compete with a younger backup horse, and was called up at the last minute to replace eight-time Paralympic gold medalist Sophie Christiansen.
Following her medal-winning performances, Georgia said: “I’m on top of the world. I didn’t expect to go in there and win bronze. I just want to do this all over again, to show what else I can do and keep building the collection.”
Georgia’s journey to Para-Dressage success traces all the way back to when she started riding at just two years of age, following a physio’s advice that it would help her balance. It is a journey that has been followed eagerly by everyone who has known Georgia, including the communities at Rydal Penrhos and her hometown of Betws-yn-Rhos.
With less than five days’ notice, the people of the town organised a celebration on the local sports field to welcome Georgia home from the Far East.
More than 200 people attended and enjoyed live music and food including a hog roast, fresh salad and cakes.
An open roof vehicle had been arranged by the community to transport Georgia to the event.
Many other members of the community volunteered to help tidy up the sports field, bringing strimmers, paint and other equipment to lend a helping hand.
The afternoon was a roaring success enjoyed by many. The presence of Georgia’s horse, Sakura, or ‘Suki’ as she is affectionately known, was a particular highlight for everyone in attendance.
Among them was Mr Mike Farnell, a longtime member of the Rydal Penrhos teaching staff, currently serving as UCAS and Careers officer.
He said: “It was amazing to put on this celebration for Georgia. As a mark of her achievements, even villagers who had never met her wanted to be there to help her celebrate.
“Georgia told me how unexpected but very welcome the celebration was. She was more confident than maybe we gave her credit for as she had been performing exceptionally well in European Championships and hopes very much to be able to qualify for Paris 2024.”
Everyone at Rydal Penrhos could not be prouder of Georgia. We are so happy to see the wonderful welcome home, it is a clear reminder of the ability our sportspeople have to bring people together.
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