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Amy was nominated for the highly prestigious national accolade by Sue Ferris, lead coordinator for the Cornwall Junior Academy, who said: "Amy has been a member of the Academy for several years and has worked incredibly hard in all of her training sessions, whilst playing a key role in developing an ethos of camaraderie among the young riders."

In 2011, Amy qualified her 14.2hh pony SOS Unicorn for the Blue Chip Championships, the Pony British Novice Second Rounds and the Pony Newcomers Second Rounds. She also enjoyed success on her mother's 14.1hh bay gelding Lambertus and 14.2hh grey gelding Chesters Choice.

"Amy has achieved many of her goals through sheer determination and total commitment which makes her a perfect ‘Shining Star'," said NAF Marketing Manager Tracey Lloyd. "It gives us the greatest of pleasure to award this to her so that she may add it to her many other achievements. Huge congratulations Amy from NAF!"

The NAF Shining Star Award was introduced when NAF (Natural Animal Feeds) became a British Showjumping Business Partner. The award is for members of a junior academy who have shown a great deal of commitment, progression, outstanding behaviour and, of course, riding ability. Just one award nationally is made each month.

"I am absolutely delighted for Amy," said Truro High Headmistress Caroline Pascoe. "She is clearly passionate about her riding and works extremely hard not only to improve her skills but also to help and encourage others. We're all very proud of her."

Ends 24 July 2012

Photo: Amy Merrell in showjumping action

Media enquiries: Sue Bradbury PR Tel: 01872 863863 E:

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