Representing Canada has an extra special feeling for Meigan Mullin.
Adopted from China at age one, the now 15-year-old knows her life could have been drastically different.
“If I hadn’t been adopted, I would’ve lived in an orphanage for the rest of my life,” she wrote in an essay application for a spot on Team Canada.
“Canada has given me a second chance. My life in Canada is great. I want to give back to Canada by representing this amazing country.”
And represent Canada she will, as the South Surrey teen is one of the five members competing on Team Canada at the International Pony Club Mounted Games.
Mullin is the lone local member of the squad, joining Lily Solomon (Toronto North York Pony Club), Nicole Blair (Medicine River Pony Club), Sara Chauvin (Mill Ridge Pony Club) and Celia Markovinovic (Guelph Pony Club).
Canada will go up against teams from the United States, Australia and the United Kingdom.
Each team consists of five Pony Club members, who are either 15 or 16 years old, and sees them compete in a series of relay-style races requiring riders to pick up objects from the ground while remaining in the saddle, weave through a series of poles at high speeds, hand items off to teammates without slowing their ponies, and dunking objects into buckets.
The Games are held annually with the countries rotating hosting responsibilities and this year’s competition will be hosted by the Canadian Pony Club at Langley’s Campbell Valley Park on July 16. They are free to attend and run from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
“I am really really excited and actually quite honoured to get the chance to represent Canada,” Mullin said. “Especially with the competition (so close) to where I live.”
The riders qualified first in their local Pony Club branch — Mullin is part of the Boundary Bay Pony Club (which is supported by Surrey’s Unicorn Stables — then at the regional level, the district championships, and finally, at nationals.