Rydal Penrhos has produced some tremendous athletes throughout its history. From greats such as Wilf Wooler and “Prince of Centres” Bleddyn Williams to more modern-day triumphs, the school is incredibly proud of what our pupils accomplish during their time with us and once they leave.

This is a testament to the solid foundation they receive under the guidance of our exceptional teachers and coaches at Rydal Penrhos.

Here are a few recent examples of Rydal Penrhos success stories in a sporting environment.

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Sean Lonsdale

Sean attended Rydal Penrhos from 2011-15 and is widely regarded as one of the brightest young rugby prospects anywhere in the nation.

Lonsdale was part of the school’s Rugby Academy before going on to make his debut for RGC 1404 at a very early age, playing a substantial role in the Gogs’ meteoric rise through the Welsh domestic scene right up to the Principality Premiership.

His outstanding production attracted plenty of suitors from across the border. Despite a strong push from the Welsh Rugby Union to keep him, Lonsdale decided to leave in favour of a move to Exeter Chiefs, who ply their trade in the English Premiership.

Vicky Thornley

Vicky is another former pupil that has achieved a considerable amount in the world of rowing.

She is the first Team GB athlete to ever reach the women’s single sculls final – finishing fourth at the Tokyo Olympic Games.

Among a wealth of outstanding accolades, Vicky also has an Olympic silver medal from the women’s double sculls alongside Dame Katherine Grainger, which the duo achieved at the Rio games.

Dylan Kerfoot-Robson

Dylan was Wales’ first mountain biker to compete in the Commonwealth Games since 2006.

He has competed in three Commonwealth Games with his debut at 2010 in Delhi. Since, he has represented Wales in Glasgow and the Gold Coast.

Sport runs in the Kerfoot-Robson household with his mum having a background in athletics, younger brother showing huge potential in cyclo-cycle and sister enjoying success at a range of sports. He is also the son of Mr Robson, Senior Teacher and Head of Science.

Ellie Scarff

Ellie was a nationally recognised Tennis player from the age of 12 before going on to earn a place at the prestigious Patrick Mouratoglou Tennis Academy in the South of France.

She made significant waves on the youth circuit and also used this time to progress her coaching skills significantly, something she is still pursuing at the present time.

Ellie’s LTA tour efforts are also something to be incredibly proud of. She has also been back to Rydal Penrhos to offer advice to the next generation of aspiring tennis players.

Andrew Fenby

After a fantastic professional rugby career that saw Andrew turn out for the likes of Newcastle, Saracens and London Irish, the former pupil has now turned his attention to becoming a successful sports agent after founding Certo Management.

His journey has been a great source of inspiration for current pupils looking to follow in his footsteps, and he remains a strong part of the Rydal Vikings, which is an alumni association.

Andrew also excelled at squash during his time at Rydal Penrhos, and earned national honours as part of the Wales U19 squad that competed at the World Junior Championships in Pakistan.

Zach Speakman

After securing national triumphs throughout his time at Rydal Penrhos, Zach has now set his sights on representing Wales at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham.

He is highly ranked at British standard and gained a tremendous amount of experience from competing within Olympic trials for the first time.

Whilst at Rydal Penrhos, Zach played all sports and not only loved them, but was particularly successful. To date, he still holds school records for the Mile race and the high jump.

He attended the Welsh finals for the high jump, played hockey in a team that went on to win the Welsh schools competition and was also one of a limited number of pupils who were selected to play Eton Fives at Eton itself.

Pat Leach

Pat was a hugely successful sportsman in both cricket and rugby. He represented Orrell and Manchester before going on to sign for Newport Gwent Dragons in August 2009.

He was also an immensely gifted cricketer and made his debut in the Liverpool and District Competition for Colwyn Bay at the age of 14.

He briefly went on trial with Glamorgan County Cricket Club in the summer of 2002, playing for their U17s team in matches against Monmouth School and Wiltshire Under-17s.

Pat earned selection to a Wales select XI for a three-day game against the Marylebone Cricket Club at the SWALEC Stadium in 2011.

Georgia Wilson

Georgia attended Rydal Penrhos from 2007 to 2012, won two bronze medals for Team GB in the Para-Dressage at the Tokyo Paralympics. Her medal-winning efforts came in the Grade II Championship Test and Grade II Freestyle Test respectively.

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.  

Another notable achievement came at the 2019 FEI European Championships, where Georgia emerged victoriously.

Suzy Drane

Suzy has a legacy within the sport of Netball that will forever be remembered. She is a prolific international and has been capped more than 100 times by her country and is also Wales Netball captain.

Suzy is currently playing for Team Bath Toucans after a sensational stint with Celtic Dragons. The former pupil is currently a lecturer in Sport Development and Performance Sport at Cardiff Metropolitan University, a role she took up in 2011 following the completion of a BSc and MSc in Sport Development and Physical Activity and Health respectively.

Suzy has also assisted in the development of hopefuls at the school in recent years. She was part of the coaching staff that saw Rydal Penrhos’ senior squad travel to Greece for a memorable tour that will live long in the memory.