THE Natural Animal Feeds (NAF) Shining Star Award for November has been given to 12-year-old Florence Finzi from Cirencester.

Florence has been awarded the NAF Shining Star because of the improvement that she has shown during her time as a member of the British Showjumping Gloucestershire Junior Academy.

Nicky Florence, lead coach for the Academy, nominated Florence for the nationwide award.

“I have been coaching Florence for about a year and I have been extremely impressed by her dedication and commitment to improve,” said Nicky.

“She is enthusiastically and intelligently completing her log books for her ponies, showing an educated understanding of her training and an ability to be technique- driven in her riding.

“Florence is greatly encouraged and supported by her mother and although Florence is the only ‘horsey’ person in her family, she manages her ponies and her show planning with great knowledge, patience and understanding. She is well worthy of the Shining Star award.”

Florence has been a member with British Showjumping since 2011 and has been riding since she was seven.

She is relatively new to affiliated show jumping and the Junior Academy system, but despite this, she has started out successfully and has already completed her 1* and 2* Pony Performance Award and is actively working her way to completing her 3*. She now enjoys competing on two ponies, Bobby Blue II and Rosslayne Masquerade.

Florence said: “I got involved with the Gloucestershire Junior Academy because of the great coaching opportunities that were available to me. I have to thank everyone who has been helping and supporting me, especially Nicky Florence.