Saturday, October 21, 2017
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 19, 2017
I sit as the Wildlife Management Chair on the Bureau of Land Management’s Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board. My responsibility is to represent the interests of wildlife on 30 Million acres of public land in the American West as they are affected by Wild Horses and Burros. That is an area the size of nearly 15 Yellowstone National Parks. I’m honored to have been nominated to sit in the unpaid volunteer position and I take it very seriously. It is a tremendous responsibility in a truly tragic situation.
Simply put, the Wild Horse and Burro Program is a complete wreck. It is a toxic, ugly, finger-pointing, emotional, and controversial subject that for decades our society, politicians, the BLM, and congress have failed to enact a sustainable management plan to avoid a large and looming ecological disaster. Right now there are over 3X the target population of Wild Horses and Burros nationwide and in some areas they are causing severe ecological damage. In other areas, they aren’t. History and common sense tells us that when a population exceeds its carrying capacity in a confined area with limited resources, there is a population crash. When those population crashes occur, it affects all the wildlife in an area along with vegetation, soil, water quality, etc… Much worse than the population crash are the long-term effects, especially in desert environments, where native plant communities can take decades or centuries to grow back. In arid deserts of the Great Basin where most wild horses roam, disturbed native plant communities are often replaced by fire-prone annual invasives, especially cheat grass, that can dominate a landscape. An estimated 50 million acres of the American West has already been converted into an invasive cheatgrass monoculture and as a society, I believe we should direct our land managers to put ecosystem health as #1 top priority. Some of the ecological degradation could be permanent and may never recover in our lifetime. The very worse case scenario for Wild Horses and Burros, your public land that they depend on, and all the wildlife that require that habitat, is to take a no-management approach when it comes to wild horses and to allow nature to take its course.
Today I supported the recommendations brought by the Advisory Board that allows for a lethal management of the wild horses and burros. Already, a mere two hours after the meeting, there have been multiple organizations directing social media hate mail towards me and my pages. If you’re one of those people who came to this page wanting to hate me, I understand. Please take the time to read the rest of this post and I would love to hear your thoughts about how to create a sustainable path forward. Unfortunately, I don’t see one and I have studied this issue extensively. This is a hard pill for me to swallow because for the past several years of my life I’ve tried to find a solution to the Wild Horse & Burro dilemma that got every single horse adopted. I’ve adopted numerous mustangs personally, have helped make multiple films promoting adoptions, and have raised over $100k for wild horse adoption organizations. I’ll try to explain how this situation has spun so out of control and why I made the recommendations that I did.
The Ancestors of Wild Horses evolved in North America and went extinct in the Great Pleistocene Extinction around 10,000 years ago. Fortunately, they migrated across the Bering Strait prior to extinction where they were eventually domesticated, breeds developed, artificial selection occurred, and horses were ultimately brought back to the Americas during European Expansion. Horses escaped, were set free to breed, and multiplied in a “Wild” or “Feral” state for hundreds of years. As the West was settled, these Wild Horses, often called mustangs, were rounded up to the point that Velma Johnson, AKA Wild Horse Annie, pushed for legislation to protect the remaining Wild Horses. This culminated in the Wild and Free Roaming Horse and Burro Act of 1971 that protected the 15,000 or so Horses and Burros remaining in the American West. Today Wild Horses and burros are managed on about 30 million acres of land in about 179 Herd Management Areas (HMAs).
Under protection, the Wild Horses and Burro populations grew about 15-20% annually and threatened overgrazing on the rangelands that they shared with wildlife and in some cases livestock. So the BLM, the government agency in charge of managing the Wild Horses, created Appropriate Management Levels (AMLs) which is the number of horses that each Herd Management Area (HMA) can supposedly sustain in a thriving ecological balance with wildlife and in some areas livestock. Currently, the nationwide AML is 27,000.
While the Appropriate Management Level is 27,000, the current population is estimated to be between 80,000-85,000 Wild Horses and Burros (including 2017 foals) which is over 3X the target population. For reference, when I first became involved in the WH&B issue there were less than 50,000 in the wild. The BLM is supposed to gather excess horses to prevent overgrazing but they can’t because they don’t have a place to put them because they’ve already gathered and are boarding 45,000 Wild Horses and Burros in feed lot-style holding pens and leased pasture. The BLM is spending $50 Million annually (2/3 of its Wild Horse and Burro budget) to feed these horses in holding. Each individual horse that goes into the holding pen process is estimated to cost taxpayers $50,000 per individual. For the price of all the horses being kept in holding pens, you could send 90,000 students to an in state 4-year college. To me, that level of government spending is completely unacceptable. That is why I made the recommendation to: “Phase out long-term holding over the next three years and apply that budget to on-range management and adoptions.” This recommendation passed the board 6-1. To phase out Long Term holding, the public would have the opportunity to adopt the horses and acquire the ownership and expenses involved.
Unfortunately, the horse market is saturated, many rescue facilities are full to the brim, and adoption has fallen over the past decade. If the public didn’t adopt them all, it’s possible some non-reproducing herds could be established on public lands. Most likely, some horses would have to be euthanized. This is not a crazy thought. People euthanize millions of dogs and cats every year, Bison are culled in Yellowstone to prevent overgrazing, and Elk are culled in Rocky Mountain National Park. It’s not a fun topic to discuss so I’ll move on...
Read more here:
By Diane Sieker on October 21, 2017
Local resident Susan Anderson is most recently well-known for her secret passion for art as the Anza Phantom Artist, having secretly painted and placed large colorful road signs all over the area. Besides being a vet and avid horsewoman, she recently organized and hosted a local equestrian event, The Iron Horse Challenge, which was held Sept. 23 and 24.
The Iron Horse Challenge was an “endurance race” and involved testing both rider and animal to the extremes without causing detrimental harm to either one. Vet techs were on hand during the event to check the well-being of the horses. Water and other essentials were provided at intervals during the competition. Generally, endurance races range from five or 10 miles to hundreds of miles long.
“I got involved with endurance back in 1991, when I lived in Northern California and became friends with Bobbie Haskall, who put on a ride every six months up at Whiskeytown Lake by Redding,” Anderson said. “First, I started vetting the rides for her, then I bought one of her horses and competed briefly. My first ride was a 50-mile ride, and I came in ninth out of 65 riders, I believe. What a kick! I was amazed and inspired. I have always loved this sport. It is lot more regulated and complex than people think, and when done properly is a wonderful example of how people and horses can work together to achieve amazing things...”
Read more here:
Sunday, October 15, 2017
The Nomination Deadline is Approaching Fast for Distance Horse of the Year Award
The Distance Horse of the Year Award is presented to an Arabian, Half-Arabian or Anglo-Arabian horse for outstanding achievements in distance events for the current year. The award recipient is honored by a name plate on the perpetual trophy and listed on the Arabian Horse Association's (AHA) website.
In addition, the owner of the horse receives a take-home trophy to display. The winner of the award will be chosen at AHA's Annual Convention.
Anyone may nominate a horse for this award by filling out the nomination form and submitting it by November 1. The owner of the horse must be a current AHA member with a Competition Card. To view previous Distance Horse of the Year award winners, click here.
You can download the Nomination form here. Forms can be submitted by fax to (303) 696-4599, emailed to Devin Smith at email@example.com, or mailed to the following address:
Arabian Horse Association
C/O Devin Smith
10805 E Bethany Dr.
Aurora, CO 80014
Friday, October 13, 2017
"LAST CALL FOR FALL" SPECIAL! Haven't renewed or joined yet but going to a ride or two before the season ends? Renew or join by Oct. 30 and be entered into our drawing for a chance to win an awesome #aerc package!
Winner receives one of our popular "Don't Saddle For Less" t-shirts, an AERC picnic blanket, and an AERC swag bag! There are lots of rides left in the season! Open to new AND renewing members.
Easy link to join/renew: https://aerc.org/Join_AERC
Thursday, October 12, 2017
With only a month to go, the AERC Young Rider Team competition is fired up. AERC's Young Riders (aged 16 - 21) formed 5-member teams early in the 2017 ride season, with competition points earned by each individual to be tallied for a team score.
For more information on the Young Rider Team Challenge, visit the website: http://endurance.net/youngriderteam/
It's not too early to be thinking about next season!
Here are the team scores to date:
1) Southern Reins- 574.5
2) MW/Aussie Exchange Riders- 568.25
3) Northern Lights- 526.25
4) Hot to Trot Trixies- 425.25
5) NE Endurance Divas- 387
The following is a list of the members of each team:
Abbey Kay Moore
Hot To Trot Trixies
NE Endurance Divas
MW/Aussie Exchange Riders
Wednesday, October 11, 2017
October 11 2017
by Merri Melde-Endurance.net
Endurance riders, Arabian Horse Association people, Two Trees catering by the fabulous Wynne Teeter, evening jams, an even better band, Country Club (classic country, honky tonk, old time, and bluegrass, starring Steph's fiddle teacher), the local Radio Club (who came in very handy when a rider was injured out on trail), and the stars of the show, the endurance horses, merged and mingled at the Teeter Ranch the weekend of October 6-8 for the 3-day Owyhee Canyonlands/AHA Distance Nationals.
Not only did the Arabian Horse Association hold their 50-mile and 100-mile Purebred Arabian, and Half-Arabian/Anglo Arabian Championships, but they also hosted the Appaloosa 50-mile Championship (ANCER) and the Paso Fino National Championship. The Teeter Ridecamp looked like Days of Old, when trailers squeezed into every conceivable space both in front and in back.
While more horse trailers continued to pull into camp on Friday, the Day 1 25-mile ride and the AERC 50-mile ride took riders into the Owyhee desert, down to the Snake River and around Wild Horse Butte.
39 riders started the 50, with 36 finishing. Winner was Christoph Schork, riding RR Jazz Dancer in 5:13. Daneila Lambeck was second (also 5:13) aboard Christoph's GE Berry Haat Salza. Karen Steenhof and WMA Proclaim came in third in 5:50. GE Jazz Dancer won Best Condition.
20 started the LD, with 15 finishing. Vonnie Brown aboard Chipikiri won the ride in 4:04, a minute over Leonard Bottleman and APP Taylor La Esplendida Mirada. Bill Miller, riding Tezeros Annie Sue, and David Brown, riding Tezeros Hot Shot, finished third and fourth in 4:10. Tezeros Hot Shot got Best Condition.
Day 2 was a busy ride day, with a 25-mile LD, an open 50-mile ride, and the 4 50-mile Championship rides: Purebred Arabian, Half-Arabian/Anglo-Arabian, Appaloosa, and Paso Fino.
14 riders started the AHA Purebred Arabian Championship, with 12 finishing. John Stevens, from Lincoln, California, took the Championship honors with his 9-year-old gelding Rabbalad (FV Classic Farwa x FV Farabba, by Haji Rabba) in 5:08. Reserve Champion went to Christoph Schork, from Moab, Utah, aboard GE Haat Rod Express (DWA Express x Pico Stardust +/, by Pico Haat Shaat) in 5:33. Jeff Stuart, from Ogden, Utah, took third with JV Remington (JV Shadow Dancer x Sugar is Fine, by *Patriark) in 6:27. GE Haat Rod Express won Best Condition.
7 riders started the Half-Arabian/Anglo Arabian division, with 5 finishing. Jeff Loe from Trail, Oregon, and Hillcreek Pyra (SFF Pyro x Zephyr) won in a time of 6:27. Denise Obray, from Auburn, California, and TM Dunit in Gold (Ima Dun Kid x Faireshine Padron, by *Padron) finished second in 7:06. Junior rider Sarah Holloway from Maple Valley, Washington, finished third aboard Phinneas (Grandson of the Black Stallion) in 8:28. Phinneas won the Best Condition award, much to his approval.
Top honors in the Appaloosa Championship went to Siri Olson from The Dalles, Oregon, and EZ To B Perfect, in a ride time of 7:52. Jessica Cobbley, from Blackfoot, Idaho, and The Big Brass finished second in 7:58. Third place went to Kathleen Jepson, from Independence, Oregon, aboard Spotted Wap in a ride time of 8:21. EZ To B Perfect also won Best Condition. 6 started and 4 completed the ride.
The Paso Fino Championship had 3 starters and finishers. Chris Cane, from Olympia, Washington, and Marco del Padre finished first in 8:59, and earned the Best Condition award. Lindsay Campbell, visiting from Lake City, Florida, finished second aboard Cane's horse Magico del Padre in 9:00. The current AERC President, Paul Latiolais, from Milwaukie, Oregon, finished third aboard Francisco Adan CuGR in 10:13.
50 riders started the Open 50 mile ride, with 41 finishing. John Stevens and Rabbalad were first in 5:08. Christoph Schork and GE Haat Rod Express were second in 5:33, and Dean Hoalst and Redwing Ofcourage finished third in 5:56. GE Haat Rod Express won the open AERC Best Condition award.
The Racing Mules put on their fun and excellent show in the LD (3 of them carrying Juniors). They took the top 4 spots, with Junior Parker Eversole and out of Idaho winning in 3:10, with sponsor Trinity Jackson aboard Gracie second (also in 3:10). Junior Sidney Jackson was third on Bear in 3:11, and Junior Lucy Martin was fourth on Irish in 3:12. 8th place Stace Moss aboard Top Hat Frost won Best Condition. 20 started and 18 finished the ride.
Day 3 saw a 25-mile ride, an open 55-mile ride, and the 100-mile open, Purebred Arabian, and Half-Arabian/Anglo Arabian Championships. The 100-milers got to visit Wild Horse Butte, the Snake River, and one of the more scenic canyons in the area, Sinker Creek, which runs through the historic 150+-year-old Joyce Ranch.
All participants this day, horses, riders, and volunteers, got the added bonus of cold gale winds, which were actually acceptable, because they blew the gnats into the next county. It was fine 100-mile horse weather, reflected by the most excellent high completion rates, particularly in the 100.
"Team Stevens," from Lincoln, California, and their sleek Purebred Arabians were the stars of that 100-mile division. Crossing the finish line in 8:57 were Diane (first place) aboard the 15-year-old gelding Banderaz LC7 (Jazzman DGL x Zordosa, by *Bandos PASB), and John (second place) aboard the 9-year-old gelding Justin SF (Sir Fames HBV x NNL Just a Heat, by Don El Chall). Justin SF won the Best Condition award. Third place went to Jeanette Mero, of Mariposa, California, and Jet Setting Sandrita (Djet Set De Falgas x Tiki Destiny, by Sambors Destiny) in 10:40. Jeanette rode and finished with her 16-year-old Junior daughter Reyna, aboard Triomphe. This made the Team Mero weekend a complete success (they also finished the AHA 50 the day before), after 2 breakdowns on the way to Idaho and arriving at camp in the middle of the night. The AHA finish made 4 100-mile completions for both horses for the year.
The only other Junior in the AHA Purebred ride was 14-year-old Sarah Holloway, of Maple Valley, Washington, riding with her aunt Connie Holloway aboard DWA Saruq. Sarah and her 14-year-old gelding Noble Desperado finished in 13th place in a ride time of 15:40 in their first 100-mile ride. 15 started and 14 finished the ride.
A literal coin toss determined the winner of the Half-Arabian/Anglo Arabian 100-mile Championship, because they could not be separated by a nostril wrinkle or a tail hair at the finish. Winner was Suzanne Hayes, of Arlee, Montana, riding her 9-year-old half-Thoroughbred gelding Sanstormm (Sanskrit x Alta Snow), in a time of 9:45. Reserve Champion was Christoph Schork aboard the half Quarter horse mare GE Pistol Annie (Sulte x Sissy). Annie won the Best Condition award. Third place out of 3 starters went to Carson City, Nevada's Connie Creech aboard LS Steele Breeze (Remington Steele x LS Shareem, by Luzero), in a ride time of 15:07. This was Breezy's 16th 100-mile completion. Her previous ride was a finish in the tough Virginia City 100 three weeks earlier.
The open AERC 100-mile ride had 26 starters and 23 finishers. Diane and John Stevens tied for first, and Christoph Schork and Suzy Hayes tied for third place along with Meridian, Idaho's Lynn Rigney, aboard Predictable. That pair also finished the Virginia City 100 three weeks earlier, in 6th place. Justin SF won the open Best Condition award.
10 riders started the 50-mile ride, with 8 completing. First place went to Jeff Stuart and DWA Malik in a ride time of 6:30. Tani Bates and CR Marjan Roars were second in 6:35, and Beth Nicholes and DWA Zifhaffir were third in 7:08. Best Condition went to DWA Zifhaffir.
All 19 starters finished the LD ride (5 mules again!), with Bill Miller finishing first in 2:41 aboard Raffons Noble Dancer. Second was David Brown aboard Tezeros Hot Shot. The 5 mules were next, carrying 3 Juniors. Tezeros Hot Shot won Best Condition.
For more photos and stories on the ride, see:
Monday, October 09, 2017
by Merri Melde-Endurance.net
October 9 2017
The wife and husband team of Diane and John Stevens, from Lincoln, California, took top honors in the AHA Distance Nationals Purebred Arabian 100 Mile ride in Oreana, Idaho on Sunday October 8th.
Diane and her gelding Banderas LC7 took first place in a ride time of 8:57. John and his gelding Justin SF took second place (also ride time of 8:57), and, next morning, the Purebred Best Condition award. 15 started the division with 14 finishing.
Winner of the AHA 100-mile Half Arabian/Anglo Arabian division was literally determined on a coin toss. Suzanne Hayes, from Arlee, Montana, aboard Sanstormm tied with Christoph Schork, from Moab, Utah, aboard GE Pistol Annie right on the finish line with a ride time of 9:45. A coin toss gave the win to Suzy Hayes. Christoph's GE Pistol Annie won the Best Condition award the next morning. Connie Creech and LS Steele Breeze finished third in a ride time of 15:07, making 3 starters and 3 finishers in this division.
More to come at:
Sunday, October 08, 2017
October 8 2017
by Merri Melde-Endurance.net
The 50-mile Arabian Horse Association Distance National 50-mile ride was held Saturday October 7 at the Teeter Ranch in Oreana, Idaho.
Winner of the Purebred Arabian division was John Stevens, of Lincoln, California, aboard Rabbalad in a time of 5:08. Second place went to Christoph Schork, of Moab, Utah and GE Haat Rod Express in 5:33. Jeff Stuart, from Ogden, Utah, was third aboard JV Remington in 6:27. GE Haat Rod Express won Best Condition. 14 started the ride with 12 completing.
In the Half-Arabian/Anglo Arabian division, Jeff Loe from Trail, Oregon, and Hillcreek Pyra won in a time of 6:27. Auburn, California's Denise Obray and TM Dunit in Gold finished second in 7:06, and Junior rider Sarah Holloway from Maple Valley, Washington, finished 3rd aboard Phinneas in 8:28. Phinneas won the Best Condition award. 7 started and 5 finished the ride.
Held in conjunction with the Arabian Distance National were the ANCER (Appaloosa National Championship Endurance Ride) and PFHA (Paso Fino Horse Association) 50 mile championships.
6 started and 4 completed the ANCER Championship. Siri Olson from The Dalles, Oregon, and EZ To B Perfect won first place and Best Condition in a ride time of 7:52. Jessica Cobbley, from Blackfoot, Idaho, and The Big Brass finished second in 7:58. Third place went to Kathleen Jepson, from Independence, Oregon, aboard Spotted Wap in a ride time of 8:21.
3 started and finished the PFHA Championship, with Chris Cane, from Olympia, Washington, and Marco del Padre finishing first and winning Best Condition in a ride time of 8:59. Lindsay Campbell, from Lake City, Florida, finished second aboard Cane's horse Magico del Padre in 9:00. Paul Latiolais, current AERC President, from Milwaukie, Oregon, finished 3rd aboard Francisco Adan CuGR in 10:13.
The 100 Mile Championship is being held Sunday October 8.
More information at:
Thursday, October 05, 2017
I didn’t think I was the type of person who could succeed at a demanding sport like endurance riding. But with the help of two insightful coaches and their talented horses, I learned that I am.
October 5 2017
I was up at 6 a.m. on the Saturday before Labor Day, getting ready to drive 30 miles into the hills north of Los Angeles to meet someone I’d seen once at a party. Her name was Lisa, and she’d told me that her endurance horses needed exercise while she recuperated from foot surgery. For me, her offer presented an opportunity to try something new---and to take a step toward a dream that has been nipping at my heels for a long time.
“Oh! Do you ride, too?” I asked, surprised, when I pulled up at Lisa’s farm. I’d found not Lisa, but her husband, saddling a horse.
“Everyone asks that question,” Shel grumbled.
Women may make up the largest demographic of endurance riders, but Shel has logged more miles in competition than most riders ever will. He began riding in midlife and rapidly became an accomplished competitor. My surprise didn’t get me off on the right foot with Shel, but fortunately, he gave me a second chance.
I didn’t embarrass myself again during my first five-mile ride with Shel. I embarrassed myself the next day instead...
Read more here:
Tuesday, October 03, 2017
By Judy Heinrich
October 2 2017
Regular readers of Appointments will remember that we recently featured endurance rider Marianne Williams of Tryon, who was heading off to compete in the Mongol Derby. Deemed “the longest and toughest horse race in the world” by the Guinness Book of Records, the Derby gives riders up to 10 days to cover 621 miles across high passes, open valleys, wooded hills, floodplains and the expansive grassland “Steppe” that covers much of Mongolia. And they do it all on a changing cast of semi-wild Mongolian horses who are switched out every 25 miles, first-come, first-served.
Derby organizers are blunt in telling would-be competitors that they stand a high chance of being seriously injured during the race. And that’s what happened to Marianne, who fortunately lived to tell the tale.
“I had been riding for four days, and had already covered about 350 miles,” she recalls. “The variety of terrain was just amazing. We would be riding in the desert but looking at snow-capped peaks. One day we’d have 80-degree temperatures and the next we’d have 30 mile-per-hour winds and sleet hitting you on the left for two-thirds of the ride and full in the face for the rest. And we rode through herds of wild horses, goats and sheep along the way.
“There were probably 40 horses to choose from at every station, with a mixture of good, poor, and some just plain evil. I had one that kept wanting to throw me off – it did throw me off twice. Then I had a stallion when I was riding with a group of five people, and he and I went out front and led the group the whole day, with the reins down on his neck.”
But as unpredictable as the horses could be, it was a much smaller animal that ended Marianne’s ride: a Mongolian Marmot, a relative of our very own domestic groundhog. Actually many marmots were probably involved, since it was a tunnel system they’d built which collapsed under Marianne’s horse. Both horse and rider fell, and Marianne was knocked unconscious and had her left clavicle broken in four places...
Read more here:
By Judy Heinrich
October 2 2017
Young UK farrier works with Landrum’s Jeff Pauley
Even among the diverse group of farriers we have working in the Carolina Foothills, there are several things that set Tom Holliday apart. First he didn’t grow up around here: he’s from Melton Mowbray in Leicestershire, England, a market town with farming and foxhunting traditions. He’s also young compared to our average population – just 23. And he’s a graduate of the very rigorous system of study, apprenticeship and certification developed by Great Britain’s Worshipful Company of Farriers (WCF), which was established in the year 1356 a.d. and given a Royal Charter of Incorporation in 1674 (see pg. 56).
Tom spent his boyhood around horses, starting with a Shetland pony and then riding a variety of breeds. His father was a huntsman, so naturally Tom hunted a lot. He also developed an early and enduring interest in farriery: “I always wanted to be a farrier,” he says. That began with his grandfather, who trained as a farrier in the army and then did all his own shoeing for the Appaloosa stud farm he owned.
Tom’s riding was curtailed as a teenager when he spent several years between Germany and Northern Ireland, where the family followed his stepfather’s army career. After finishing high school in Germany, Tom applied to the WCF certification program.
His first step was a pre-farrier course (forging) at Herefordshire College of Technology, and he then completed the required apprenticeship with an Approved Training Farrier (ATF), in Shropshire, England. He now has his Diploma from the WCF, which is the first of three levels of accreditation; the second and third are Associate and then Approved Training Farrier. If Tom hadn’t passed his exam for the “Dip-WCF” level, he’d have been pushed back in his training for six months before getting to try again.
Meanwhile in Burnsville…
For longer than Tom has been alive, Jeff Pauley has been a farrier in the Carolinas, starting in 1989 in Burnsville, N.C. His primary career was in engineering for the Rockwell Corporation in Weaverville, and he got interested in farriery through his hobby of competitive roping. “I watched the farrier work and liked what he did so much that I took a leave of absence from work to attend farrier school,” he says. After starting farriery part-time he turned it into a full-time career in 2002...
Read more here:
Thursday, September 28, 2017
Wed Sep 27th, 2017
When Chad Deetken first glanced at an ad describing the Gobi Gallop, he quickly dismissed it as too crazy to consider.
Once the next edition of Saddle Up magazine arrived a month later and he took a closer look, the 69-year-old Chemainus resident had an immediate change of heart.
“It struck me like lightning. I thought you have to do this,” he said regarding the Gobi Gallop, hailed as the longest annual charity horseback rides in the world. The event covers 700 kilometres in 10 days, tearing up rolling hills, galloping across green pastures, fording streams, and occasionally sleeping in yurts with the Mongol nomads
“It turned out to be an endurance ride with a capital E, one of the toughest rides out there,” recalled Deetken, one of only eight people to sign up for the event in 2014...
Read more here:
Monday, September 25, 2017
September 19 2017
Arabian Horse Life Magazine
Endurance rider Lily Turaski, originally from Friendsville, Tenn., has received the Stamps President's Scholarship to attend Georgia Tech. The Stamps President's Scholarship is a nationwide, full-ride scholarship program. It is awarded to students showcasing strong scholar-ship, leadership, progress, and service, and the program gives students an opportunity to build and grow in these four pillars.
Turaski was introduced to endurance riding at age eight by her nana, who also races, and has been riding her purebred Arabian gelding, Chance of Freedom (by Belesemo Chance) for eight years. She has competed in the national championship, completed over 3,000 competition miles, and placed in the top three nationally four times. Lily and Freedom make a great team, and they have completed 7 out of the 10 years needed for the Decade Team award. Her horse, Freedom, is one of the top 20 equines in the U.S. for lifetime mileage.
Turaski mentions the life lessons she's learned from endurance riding and taking care of her Arabian horse.
"It's important to be able to set goals; some are long term...some short term," she said. "That's something that you learn in endurance, and it has a correlation to academics and being in college. For example, the goal to com-plete the Decade Team award repre-sents a lot of commitment to the sport. Being 7 years into it, I want to finish it. I'm in college now, but I would like to be able to finish that award."
She says that the dedication it takes to care for her horse has taught her responsibility, something she can carry with her throughout her college career and beyond.
"I have learned to be dependable for my horse, my schoolwork, my commit-ments, and myself."
Turaski says that endurance riding is part of her life, and, although she won't be racing as frequently during college, she hopes to stay involved, perhaps by volunteering at races.
"After college I definitely plan to stay involved in the sport. It's a big part of my life, and I want to continue," Turaski said.
History has always been very important to me, particularly as it pertains to the Arabian horse.
This year marks the 60th anniversary for Varian Arabians. And what a story it is. In a twist-and-turn adventure, the film walks viewers through the epic story of Sheila Varian, known to be one of the world's elite horse breeders and trainers, and includes never-before-seen footage of her early years and her horses. It is the ultimate underdog story.
You'll walk alongside a young Sheila as she learns from famous mentors and carries life-long friendships. You'll ride with her as she breaks world-records to a stunned audience of more 15,000 people. You'll feel the exhilaration of watching her first three Arabian mares step off the trailer after their overseas trip from Poland in 1961. You'll share her hurts, struggles and ultimate triumphs from walking a road less traveled. You'll be swept away by the beauty of her stallions that changed the Arabian breed forever, and her unique relationships with them. But most of all, you'll be inspired by what can happen when you dig deep to follow your calling, and end up changing the world.
Evie Tubbs Sweeney
Dive into this inspirational story of one of the world's most revered horse women and breeders. You'll follow her epic journey through adventures, trials, lessons and joys. But most of all, you'll be inspired by what can happen when someone digs deep to follow their calling... and ends up changing the world.
Running time: 128 minutes
Saturday, September 23, 2017
The Distance Depot/U.S. Endurance Team Seeks Successful Finish at 2017 FEI World Endurance Championships for Young Riders and Juniors
by US Equestrian Communications Department | Sep 22, 2017, 3:05 PM EST
Valeggio sul Mincio, Verona, Italy – The Distance Depot/U.S. Endurance Team will compete in the 2017 FEI World Endurance Championships for Young Riders and Juniors on Saturday, September 23. Chef d'Equipe Mark Dial will guide the team, newly sponsored for 2017 by The Distance Depot, of Katelyn Baldino, Ragan Kelly, Ainsley Suskey, and Annie Whelan as they join 110 combinations from 33 nations racing towards top team and individual honors.
With the beautiful city of Valeggio sul Mincio serving as the backdrop, combinations will set out on a four-loop 120 km race across soft hills and country lanes and tracks alongside the banks of the Adige and Mincio rivers.
Baldino (Marietta, Ga.) returns to these championships after competing in the 2015 FEI World Endurance Championships for Young Riders and Juniors. She will ride Melody Blittersdorf’s Synthetic. She and the 17-year-old Arabian gelding started working together in May. In June, they placed first in the Fort Howes Endurance Ride CEIYJ2*. Baldino will use her experience to guide her teammates, who make their world championship debut.ain
Photo by: Becky Pearman Photography
Kelly (Waco, Texas) will compete on Tracy Kelly’s HK Kruizer, the team's reserve horse. She and the 12-year-old Arabian gelding placed third at the 2016 Broxton Bridge CEIYJ2* in April. Kelly originally was scheduled to compete on Tracy Kelly's Kharismas Grace, but the nine-year-old Arabian mare was withdrawn due to veterinary concerns.
Suskey (Iola, Wisc.) will team up with Julie Jackson’s Princess Deelites MHF. She and the 10-year-old Arabian mare placed second at the Fun in the Sun (FITS) CEIYJ2* in March 2016.
Whelan (Louisa, Ky.) will tack up Wallace Hill Leo, owned by her mother, Amy Wallace-Whelan. The younger Whelan took over the ride from her mom who competed the 13-year-old Half-Arabian gelding at the high-performance level. She and Wallace Hill Leo have earned three first-place finishes, including the 2017 FITS CEIYJ2* and 2016 and 2015 Broxton Bridge CEIYJ3* and CEIYJ2*, respectively.
Eilish Connor (Spring, Texas) and Darolyn Butler’s 15-year-old Arabian gelding, DJB Jolly Roger, were originally scheduled to compete but withdrew due to veterinary concerns. Connor will remain in Italy with the rest of the team to serve as a groom and support her teammates.
Find out more about the 2017 FEI World Endurance Championships for Young Riders and Juniors.
The USEF International High Performance Programs are generously supported by the USET Foundation, USOC, and USEF Sponsors and Members.
Wednesday, September 20, 2017
September 20 2017
by Merri Melde-Endurance.net
Rock, rocks and more rock! You couldn't see the trees for the rocks. - Kipling the horse, 7th with rider Ronda Eden
I think it [the first loop] was rockier than cr@p, but it was so dark, I couldn't see. - Matt Scribner, 10th on MM Cody
If you see enough rocks on the trail over all daylight hours then it is quite possible you will see rocks at night when there are no rocks! - Max Merlich, 11th on TCF Miles High
The rocks - you guys got that nailed! - Darlene Anderson, 12th on Xtreme Surprise
I love the trail. And the rocks - I don't care, I still love 'em. - Kaitlyn Cummins, 13th on VA Anastahzi
Nevada does have the record for most rocks in the US. We rode over most of them yesterday! - Janet Worts, 14th on MG Sedona
Thanks for letting me ride through your rock garden! - Troy Eckard, 15th on OT Rymoni GLY
You don't have to squint too hard, as you drive up the narrow canyon and incline from Dayton, Nevada, past Silver City and Gold Hill and on up into Virginia City at 6200 feet, to imagine how it was in the old days: loaded wagons pulled by horse and mule teams up the rough steep canyon roads, wild horses, unforgiving rocky mountains, a multitude of gold and silver mines, shafts and tailings, and rocky trails.
The first gold discovered in Nevada was in 1849 in Dayton, and with the discovery of the Comstock Lode strike in 1859 (the first major silver strike in America), Virginia City sprang up more or less overnight. Much of the old time panache is still alive, with people strolling boardwalks and visiting saloons lining a narrow main street, and much of the city is perched on the terraced multitudes of old mine tailings.
It's not too hard to imagine the horses and riders of yesteryear, gathering in a group in front of Virginia City's Delta Saloon (est. 1865), forming a posse or gearing up for a cattle drive, striking out early on the trails out of town. Those old trails in the rugged desert mountains are still there, and for 50 years, on an early morning in September, endurance riders have congregated in front of the Delta Saloon, and ridden 100 miles in this rocky, mountainous terrain for the bragging rights of earning a Virginia City 100 buckle upon finishing with their amazing equine equine partner within 24 hours.
The 100-mile Virginia City trail is itself one of the stars of the show - a demanding, unforgiving trail. It's always been rocky, but after last winter's heavy snowfall (after years of drought) and spring rains, much of the topsoil washed away to - you guessed it - expose more rocks. One rider said, "My mare remembered every rock from last year… there were just more of them!" If you think about it, it's very possible that riders probably trampled over some of the very same rocks the miners and their burros stumbled over 157 years ago! (People new to southwest Idaho endurance rides often ask me, "Are the Owyhee rides rocky?" I say, "I don't know, have you ever ridden in Nevada?" Because it all depends on your perspective.)
And Bailey Canyon, on the first loop, is extra famous for its extra rocks. It'll take you about an hour to get through there if you take it steadily and carefully. If you try to rush through it, you might shave a whole 5 minutes off your time.
And there's not just rocks, but 12,064 feet of elevation gain and loss to shoulder through. The SOB's are famous - 3 short but very steep Sons o' Bitches hills (which you will agree is a wholly appropriate name, once you have ridden or walked or tailed them, particularly in the high desert heat of an afternoon) that test your horse's mettle. There's the climb up Jumbo Grade to 7629 feet not that far from the top of Mt Davidson (and don't discount the climb down), plus myriad little mountains between the start and finish lines.
With the spirits of endurance riding history and tradition behind it, 70 riders showed up at the starting line for the 50th anniversary of the Virginia City 100 at 5 AM on September 16, 2017. The ride hadn't seen that many participants in 17 years.
Horses and riders were obviously stars of the 50th Anniversary show, as well. "Magnificent horses," said Jerry Gillespie, who, with his wife Martha and daughter Cheryl and son-in-law, plus a whole group of volunteers, were on site with 2 giant horse scales to conduct a dehydration/weight loss study with willing participants. The Virginia City 100 competitors were indeed a fabulous looking group of horseflesh - sleek, fit, athletic, none too heavy, none too skinny, but just right for the rigors of the trail ahead.
The biggest star on Saturday was the 10-year-old mustang named MM Woodrow (Woody), who carried his rider, Mark Montgomery to the win in a ride time of 15:13.
Mark and Woody were in third place leaving the out vet check at 24 miles, 11 minutes behind the leader Leah Cain and OT Dyamonte Santo, and 6 minutes behind Ann Marie Barnett aboard Ravens Allure. Coming up in the next 15 mile section was Bailey Canyon. "Bailey Canyon is not the place you're going to make up time," ride manager Crysta Turnage said Friday night at the ride meeting. "Be smart, take your time through there."
But Bailey Canyon is exactly where Mark and Woody made up time, and possibly even where they won the ride. They passed both Leah and Ann Marie in that canyon, arriving at the Washoe Lake vet check and 20 minute hold at 39 miles with the lead. Ann Marie was hot on Mark's tail, (both had the same out time of 10:31 AM), with Leah 25 minutes back. "That's his kind of trail," Mark said. "I wish the whole ride was like that! He just skipped through there."
Mark and Woody retained the lead throughout the ride, getting a little breathing room twice, when his nearest competitors were eliminated, first Ann Marie and Ravens Allure at 51 miles, then Leah Cain and OT Dyamonte Santo at 92 miles. The mustang finished at 11:33 PM, 36 minutes ahead of Lois Wifall and Morroccan Spice (ride time of 15:49).
Mark, from Penn Valley, California, first started in endurance in 2010 and has over 4000 miles. He's well known for the mustangs he trains and rides.
MM Woodrow has been somewhat of a phenomenon since Mark started him in endurance. He got Woody from a woman in Wyoming who couldn't train him, and who gave him to Mark as a 5-year-old. The now 10-year-old gelding has a record of 1905 miles with 33 completions in 35 starts, all but one of those in the Top Ten, and 17 first place finishes. His 4 100-mile completions include a first place in the 2016 Twenty Mule Team and a 34th place finish in this year's Tevis Cup (with rider Simone Krahnen), his last ride before Virginia City.
10th place Matt Scribner (who rode another of Mark's mustangs, MM Cody) said, "Mark made that horse. He was amazing."
Second place went to Lois Wifall and her 15-year-old gelding Morroccan Spice in 15:49. She was followed by the mother-son team of Peg Murphy-Hackley aboard HE Khem Chee and Bryce Hackley riding Sericko, in 16:14.
The biggest star on Sunday was HE Khem Chee. All the 4 horses (2nd place Morroccan Spice, 3rd place HE Khem Chee, 4th place Sericko, and 6th place Lynn Rigney and Predictable) that showed for Best Condition Sunday morning looked good - certainly not looking any worse for 100-mile wear - but Khemi looked absolutely fabulous in her trot outs.
Peg Murphy-Hackley bred her 11-year-old mare, by Khemistreetu x RT Johanna, by Wazirs Karahty. The mare has a record of 935 miles over 7 seasons, with 22 completions in 25 starts, and 4 100-mile completions, including Tevis (2013 and 2016), and last year's Virginia City (10th place). This year Peg, from Foresthill, California, earned her 1000-mile Tevis buckle, (she has also finished Australia's Tom Quilty twice) and with her second Virginia City buckle, she's hooked. "I'm a Tevis person, and now I'm chipping away at Virginia City. We'll be back!"
The ultimate star of the Virginia City 100 event is NASTR. Organized in 1968, the Nevada All-State Trail Riders came together for the purpose of preserving historical trails in Nevada by sponsoring and promoting horse back riding on these trails. It's made up of a grand group of dedicated individuals who diligently maintain the legacy of these Nevada rides with old photos and stories (did all of you get to page through the photo albums on the tables in the Ice House?), and who sink their heart and teeth into putting on several Nevada rides throughout the years, including the crown jewel, the Virginia City 100.
This year's ride manager, Crysta Turnage, declined credit. "It's all of you [NASTR members]. I'm just the face of it. This wouldn't happen without everybody's help." Consensus was that this year's was the best marked trail ever. Extra effort was put into not only the awards for the finishers (and each sponsor/award was recognized at the Sunday awards presentation), but each rider received a special 50th anniversary program, "Virginia City 100, 1968-2017 - 50 Years of Memories," containing stats of past VC rides and riders and horses, and special stories from some of the early ride pioneers.
And NASTR knows how to put on an awards ceremony. Special speakers Cliff Lewis (first VC 100 winner, and a founding member of NASTR), Phil Gardner (first 2000-mile VC buckle recipient), Connie Creech (2000-mile VC rider), and Gina Hall (owner of Fire Mt Destiny, who holds the record of 12 VC finishes and a 100% completion rate) gave a short talk, some of which had the audience either laughing or wiping away tears. Each finisher got a chance to speak if they wished.
A few more milestones were reached during this year's 50th anniversary. Shawn Bowling got his 1000-mile buckle award. Dave Rabe finished his 16th VC 100. Pat Chappell completed her 18th VC 100. And Connie Creech not only completed her 26th Virginia City ride, but her mare LS Steele Breeze finished her 4000th AERC mile, her 15th 100 mile ride, and her 5th Virginia City ride. That makes five horses that Connie has ridden to 5 Virginia City completions. (And for those of you who did not complete your first attempt at the VC ride, just keep in mind that Connie didn't finish her first one. :)
I'll conclude with a few more memorable quotes from this iconic 50th anniversary ride, which don't refer to rocks:
There's nowhere else I'd rather be then riding a horse here today. I don't have to be anywhere else. I don't have to do anything else but ride the VC 100! - Matt Scribner, 10th on MM Cody, at the 5 AM start
Last year I had "Virginia Shitty" engraved on my buckle. I like punishment. - Shawn Bowling, 37th on Rushcreek Spur, after receiving his 10th buckle
I swore off Virginia City after my second finish, but, oh well. Fergus just gets better and better. Now I have to come back. - Lucy Trumbull, 32nd on Fergus, her 5th buckle
Thanks for making me skip class and show up! - Bryce Hackley, 4th on Sericko, to his mom
You know you've *been somewhere* when you finish this ride! - Darlene Anderson, 12th on Xtreme Surprise
Folks in the know have said this ride is tougher than Tevis. It is possible they are right. - Max Merlich, 11th on TCF Miles High
Best ride EVER! - Tracy John (an Aussie), 31st on Al Marah Land Robin
Real Men Wear Jeans - Junior rider Jack Bowling 34th aboard Rushcreek Caribou, his second VC finish
To the little guy [Jack Bowling] who said real men wear jeans, Real Men Wear Shorts. - Dave Rabe, 20th on Cocamoe Joe
Well, ultimately the stars weren't quite in alignment for us yesterday and we were pulled at the 76-mile point...a combo of being both overtime and Beeba was off on the right hind at the trot.
Still, can't complain...that red mare poured her heart out for me all day long over some incredible and challenging trail. This was the longest either of us have gone before, and she headed out of camp for that second loop after 50 miles without any fuss or question. She was an energizer bunny all day, steadily eating up the miles, and eating and drinking amazingly well.
And me? More 75s and 100s, please! There's something special about these longer distances and I can't wait to do more of them.
Much more later...this was an incredible ride and I'm glad to have had the chance to start it this year. The VC magic got its hooks in me and you can be sure I'll return for another go at it! - Ashley Wingert, OT pull on The Habibah RA
Success. So grateful for all the support. I feel like one must feel when standing atop Mt Everest. To take on the huge challenge and achieve that goal. Knowing you still have work ahead to complete the journey. But treasuring the moment and the intense feelings. - Crysta Turnage, Ride Manager
More from the ride at:
Monday, September 18, 2017
September 18 2017
Mark Montgomery of Penn Valley, California, and his Wyoming mustang WW Woodrow (Woody) won the 50th running of the Virginia City 100 ride out of Virginia City, Nevada on September 16th. They completed the ride in 15 hours 13 minutes.
Coming in second was Lois Wifall aboard Morroccan Spice in a ride time of 15:49.
Third and fourth went to the mother-son Hackley team. Mom Peg Murphy-Hackley rode HE Khem-Chee, and son Bryce rode Sericko to finish in 16:14. HE Khem-Chee won Best Condition the next morning.
41 completed the ride out of 70 starters.
Finish list, photos, and more stories to come at:
Tentative Schedule *modifications below
Ride Entry Form
Corral Rentals - there are several stock panel corrals available for rent, $30 for the week. If you wish to reserve a corral, please email Regina or Steph
|Maps (click to download) or view at http://www.endurance.net/international/USA/2017AHAOwyheeCanyonlands/|
Day 1, October 6
Day 2, October 7
Day 3 100 Miles, October 8
Day 3 25/55 Miles, October 8
Live Music Saturday night! The Country Club will be playing country/bluegrass music Saturday evening from 5-7pm. Be sure to bring your 'horse/cow/ranch/rodeo' song requests!
Country Club facebook page
Update, trail modifications:
Footing is generally good with trails and dirt 2-track roads but there are rocky sections, shoes or hoof protection advised. Trails will likely be dusty in places.
Day 1 : AHA CTR Championship(40 miles), AERC 30, AHA National and AERC Open 50 mile rides will be one loop out of camp to Wildhorse Butte with a single out-vetcheck location.
Day 2 : AERC open 25, AHA/AERC open 50, ANCER/PFHA (Apaloosa, Paso Fino) 50 mile Championships will be 2 loops out of basecamp, north into Birds of Prey and south to Hart Creek (there will be more rock on this loop). Holds will be at basecamp.
Day 3: AERC open 25, AHA/AERC open 55, AERC open and AHA Championship 100 will be one big loop out of camp for 25 and 55, and 60 miles of the 100 mile event. Ride along the base of the mountains (some rocky sections along the road), drop down and ride around Sinker Reservoir, then to Wildhorse Butte and the Snake River, then home. 100 mile riders will have a 20 mile loop out of basecamp in the morning, then repeat the 20 mile loop out of basecamp for the final 20 miles.
Dinners by Two Trees Catering will be provided with ride entry, and all meals available for purchase beginning Thursday evening.
Ride entry is through AHA, so fill out their registration form at
Saturday, September 16, 2017
100 Mile Free Press, Tara Sprickerhoff
An elite rider, Anya Levermann has competed across North America, riding both her own and others’ horses in endurance events — a sport designed to test both a rider’s and horse’s teamwork, knowledge, skill and endurance.
On Sept. 23, the 16-year-old will be joining 0ver 150 athletes from 34 countries in Verona, Italy to ride at the Young Rider’s World Endurance Championships.
Levermann will be the only rider representing Canada at the event. She’ll be riding a 120 km track on Kataki, a 10-year-old Arabian mare from Bratislava.
While Levermann has her own horses that she competes with that live on her family’s property north of 100 Mile House, she also regularly rides other horses at events throughout the United States and Canada.
Endurance riding puts horses and riders on tracks of anywhere from 50 to 100 miles in distance. At regular intervals, the horses are examined by veterinarians for both a recoveries check, in terms of heart rate, and a physical check. If the horse doesn’t meet the requirements they are disqualified, or the rider can disqualify themselves if they feel something is off with the horse.
As a result, the events test the rider’s horsemanship — riders must effectively use pacing and the knowledge of their horse against the difficulties of the course.
The World Championship requires that riders complete the 120 km track in under nine hours and 50 minutes.
The track in Verona is mostly flat, says Levermann, which allows riders to ride faster. She’ll be heading to Italy a week ahead of time to do some touring, as well as to familiarize herself with the horse.
Levermann started riding endurance when she was six.
“I did my very first ride because my mom did it, and me and my sister wanted to do it too. It was something we could do with our mom.”
As a junior competitor, Levermann earned the national 100 Mile Award. Given to an American or Canadian rider under 16, the award is for the most 100 mile rides completed in a year.
Levermann had ridden eight, breaking the previous record of five.
To qualify for the world championships, Leverman had to do ten 120 km races without being disqualified.
“It’s something different. Not many people know about it. The challenge — it’s always different, it’s not always the same thing and you can do it anywhere in the world. You get to see so much, you get to experience things other people don’t.”
Training for an endurance ride is similar to training for long distance running. Horses have their distances increased in increments, and Levermann herself trains through riding regularly, running daily and playing hockey.
During an endurance ride, she says it’s nerve-wracking.
“I get stressed. I worry about the horse. If it’s my own horse I know what they are capable of. It takes a few miles for the horse to settle down because they want to go. They love doing it.”
Kataki’s owner wants Levermann to set a specific pace during the championship, other than that her goal is to finish and finish strongly.
“There’s going to be a high disqualification rate because some people just take off and go extremely fast. I just want to finish and have a healthy horse at the end.”
While she has been on rides that have been quite stressful on the body — where the terrain or track are difficult or where she needs to get off and run beside her horse — normally she finishes feeling a very little amount of soreness, she says.
Still, she’s just excited for the championships and the love of riding in general.
“It’s getting to spend all day with horses because I love them — and getting to see so much.”
Thursday, September 14, 2017
The Early Bird Drawing deadline is September 18 for Distance Horse National Championships! The ride is returning to Steph Teeter's Ranch this year in Oreana, Idaho from Oct. 6 to 8. We are very excited to have the Appaloosa Horse Club again this Fall, along with the Paso Fino Horse Association an additional partner. There will also be a live, local bluegrass/country music band playing on Saturday night, October 7.
There are several ride opportunities at the Distance Horse National Championships, including the AHA Competitive Trail Ride (CTR) National Championship starting on October 6; AHA Open CTR; American Endurance Ride Conference (AERC); Open Limited Distance and 50 Mile rides. Rides on October 7 will be the AHA 50 Mile National Championship; Appaloosa National Championship Endurance Ride; Paso Fino National Championship Endurance Ride; AERC Open Limited Distance and 50 Mile rides. Rides on October 8 will be the AHA 100 Mile National Championship; AERC Open Limited Distance; 50 Mile and 100 Mile rides.
All Open CTR, 50 Mile, 100 Mile and Open Limited Distance rides are open to ALL BREEDS and are recognized by both AHA and AERC.
As a reminder, if you own a Half-Arabian that is also a registered Appaloosa, you may enter both 50 Mile National Championship rides.
Make your plans now to attend the 2017 Distance Nationals in beautiful Oreana, Idaho! It's not too early to enter the National & Open Rides; the Early Bird Drawing deadline is September 18. To enter, please click here.
Wednesday, September 13, 2017
MDJ Sports Writer
September 13 2017
Katie Baldino, an equestrian athlete from Marietta, will compete in the FEI World Endurance Championship for Young Riders and Juniors from Sept. 22-24 in Verona, Italy.
Forty-two nations were invited to send up to five athlete/horse combinations to compete for a team and an individual title, and the 19-year-old Baldino was one of the individuals selected by the U.S. Equestrian Federation.
Endurance riding focuses on long distances and contains different variations of terrain, altitude and weather. The race is primarily conducted on a trail.
“The distance of the race is 75 miles, which is divided into 15- to 25-mile intervals,” Baldino said. “After each 15- to 25-mile interval, the horses are given a one-hour break where they can eat and relax. They are also given vet exams during their rest to make sure they are healthy and that they can continue the race.”
The Walton High School graduate races Synthetic, a grey Arabian gelding that Baldino has been competing with since May...
Read more here:
By MIKE MCGREEHAN | Correspondent
PUBLISHED: September 13, 2017
OAKLAND — From the break of dawn through the daytime’s broiling heat and into the nighttime moonlight, the Western States Trail Ride, better known as the Tevis Cup, widens and narrows over a historic Sierra Nevada trail that challenges both horse and rider up some steep inclines and near-perpendicular descents.
Over hills and through valleys, each horse and its rider must complete this 100-mile one-day trail ride within 24 hours.
This year’s Tevis Cup began at 5:15 a.m., on Aug. 5, and ended at 5:15 a.m., on Aug. 6, and saw 92 of the original 174 entries finish the race. Those who endured the full 100 miles included Mollie Quiroz and Juliana McElroy, members of a junior rider program/team known as the Dream Girls that trains out of the Chabot Equestrian Center in the Oakland hills.
Official results from the event website list Quiroz, a 14-year-old student at Redwood Christian High School, and Bishop O’Dowd student McElroy, 15, as having finished 77th and 78th, respectively. Quiroz crossed the finish line at 4:52 a.m. on Aug. 6. aboard Goose, an 8-year-old gray Arabian gelding. McElroy clocked in at 4:53 a.m., riding Chief, a 13-year-old branded chestnut mustang gelding...
Read more here:
Tuesday, September 12, 2017
Here is the Google Earth File from last year's Virginia City 100 track.
The loops shown as:
Loop 1 - Red
Loop 2 - Yellow (white?)
Loop 3 - Blue
Shown are the Vet Checks, Camp, Start, Finish, Trot-Bys, and Jumbo Hay Stop. I've also added water sources - note there will be more troughs than shown here, these are just some of the critical ones, along with "highlights" (Bailey Canyon - chortle), and locations you might want to hop off and hand-walk your horse.
The trail may vary slightly from what is shown (I found a few variations from year to year), but very minimally so.
Google Earth file:
Sunday, September 10, 2017
Please read this for important information about parking and housekeeping.
PARKING NOTICE: As most of you know, the parking at the Ice House (95 Toll Rd, Virginia City, NV) is limited and we have to conserve space as efficiently as possible. If you can trailer pool, that would be very helpful. The Storey County rock and sand piles are as big as ever in base camp. For those arriving at the Ice House Thursday afternoon (camp opens at 2:00 pm) or early Friday morning you will need to park along the back perimeters, so as not to block off any access. Please be aware of this, as we will ask you to move if there is parking behind you and no one can get to it.
If you are in the upper parking area at the Ice House, please BACK in (unload your horse first as needed) and park like the spokes of a wheel, with everyone facing out. Park as close to each other as possible. Yes, unfortunately this means that you yourself might become blocked, so plan with your neighbor a route to get your crew vehicles in and out. On the bottom level we will mark off from the entrance road a vehicle lane to access the back near the rock and sand piles.
**OVERFLOW PARKING** This year we have access to the Virginia City Rodeo Grounds at 575 H Street (see map attached). This is 1 mile from the Ice House and is better overnight accommodations for your horses. The footing is softer and there is an arena on-site you can use to turn out your horse for a while before/after the ride (take turns). For LARGE rigs, this is the better parking option as space is less limited. There will be hose water and restrooms on site.
For anyone camping at the Rodeo Grounds – we will rope off a large CREW AREA at the Ice House. You can bring your crew supplies up and treat the Ice House as an “away” check. Crews can drop off your supplies and then park their vehicles at the paved lot near the Fire House, which is less than a block from camp. It should make for easy access and quick retrieval of any forgotten items which you suddenly realize you need.
Horse camping will not be allowed on any adjacent city streets. Volunteer camping and parking will be allowed on the paved area to the right near the Fire House on Toll Road before dropping down into the Ice House or at the Rodeo Grounds (if camping). Extra crew parking will be available here also. The Fire House doors cannot be blocked in case of an emergency. NO HORSES ARE ALLOWED TO CAMP IN THE PAVED LOT.
We will have a few individuals available to assist in getting you parked. It might be a good idea for you to stop at the entrance before you drive in and take a look around before driving into camp. Once the Ice House is full, all other rigs will be directed to the Rodeo Grounds for parking.
For crews interested in staying at a motel/hotel, please see the list below:
Sugarloaf Mountain Motel - 430 South C. St. Rooms - $85.00 / (775) 847-0551 /www.sugarloafmountain-motel.com
Virginia City Motel - 675 South C. St. - Rooms - $80.00-$90.00 / (775) 847-0551 /www.virginiacityinn.com
Gold Hill Hotel - 1540 Main St. Gold Hill, - historic hotel / (775) 847-0111 /www.goldhillhotel.net
Please be prepared to clean up ALL HAY AND MANURE from your campsite – regardless of where you are camped. A dump trailer will be available at the ride site for your disposal. Please DO NOT TOSS ANY HAY OR MANURE off the side of the hill. This is very important for NASTR to receive the HEFTY cleaning deposit back. If you have laid out shavings or hay for bedding, make sure this is completely cleaned up.
Thanks so much for your cooperation. We are excited that you all will be joining us. It is going to be a great event and a lot of fun!
Please pass on this notice to anyone you may know that has not yet entered. If you have any questions, please call me at (775) 762-8086 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Virginia City 100 Ride Manager
Nevada All-State Trail Riders, Inc.
Saturday, September 09, 2017
1968-2016 Total Completions = 1,942
1968-2016 Total Riders = 940
October 5th, 1968 marked the inaugural Virginia City 100 ride, known at its onset as the Nevada All-State Trail Ride, 100 Mile - One Day. Cliff Lewis and Dean Hubbard approached Nick Mansfield who hosted the start and finish of the Ride at his 102 Ranch in Sparks, NV. They wanted to make sure that the trail included all the great features of the area. The ride ended up being way over 100 miles - and there was a also lunar eclipse.
33 riders started, with 11 finishers - and 2 more finishers over the 24 hour limit. Horses had to carry a minimum of 150 lbs. Shannon Yewell Weil and Cliff Lewis finished first with the same time - 19 hours 41 minutes (minus the three hours of vet holds, for a 16:41 riding time). The ride chart shows that the two overtime riders - Shirley Wheeler and Mark Steen - received buckles.
The original finishing chart can be found here, along with photos from the ride that year.
This Year's Trail: Consists of three loops (51, 25, 24 miles), each returning to base camp in Virginia City. There will be an outlying vet check on the first and last loop, with (2) one hour hold vet checks at base camp. Crews will have easy access to meet riders along the trail. The trail covers hard pack and rocky terrain on historical wagon (now jeep) roads with some sandy single track footing and several mountain climbs. There is also pavement through town and across highways. Riders are responsible for their own safety while crossing paved roads. We do advise the use of pads and/or boots. Elevations range between 5000 and 7800 feet. Each loop will be marked with a different color of ribbon, along with chalk and glow sticks (after dark). Water & hay will be provided on the trail and at the two outlying vet checks. The ride will start in front of the Delta Saloon at 5:00 a.m., Saturday. Allow yourself time to get from camp to the Delta by 5:00 a.m. (approximately 20 minutes). There will be a controlled start out of town. Virginia City 100 is the final ride of the Triple Crown Challenge.
Base Camp: will be at the Ice House on Toll Road in Gold Hill. Parking will be on grindings (asphalt), and will be very crowded. There will be limited room for portable corrals. If you have the ability, it would be helpful if you could car pool. The camp site will be open from Thursday evening to Sunday evening. Horse water will be available. COME PREPARED, the elevation of Virginia City is over 6000 feet and can get cold at night. The comforts of motels and cafes can be found, as well as shopping and sightseeing within walking distance of base camp.
Overflow Parking: Due to this year being the 50th Anniversary, we are expecting a larger than normal amount of entries. Rather than limit the number of riders who can attend, we have obtained permission to have additional ride parking at the Virginia City Rodeo Arena, located at 575 H Street. The arena is 0.8 miles from the Ice House, about a 15-minute walk. We will set aside a designated crewing area at the Ice House base camp for any riders who are parked at the rodeo arena to drop off any crewing and ride supplies they would like to have accessible. Crew vehicles, sans trailer, can park in the paved county lot for volunteer parking direct next to the Ice House. There will be hay and mash available in base camp. The rodeo arena features tons of flat parking as well as space to turn out your horse before and after the ride. Horses are NOT allowed to camp in the arena or designated pens overnight. There is water and porta potties on site. All ride functions and vetting will be at the Ice House.
Directions to Base Camp:
From Reno take I-580 S/US-395 S. Take the US-395 S exit (Exit 57B) toward Virginia City/Carson City/So. Lake Tahoe. Merge onto US-395 Alt S/S. Virginia St. Turn left on to Geiger Grade/NV-341 to Virginia City. Drive through downtown Virginia City towards Gold Hill. Turn left on Toll Road (before heading down the hill). Watch for ribbons and follow to the Ice House.
From Carson City take Hwy. 50 East to NV-341, follow the truck route to the right. When you reach Virginia City turn left at the stop sign (NV-342/C Street), towards Gold Hill. Turn left again on Toll Road (before heading down the hill). Watch for ribbons and follow to the Ice House.
Calcutta: Following the pre-ride meeting, we will have a fun filled Calcutta. Payoffs will be given to buyers of the top three in each division, and announced at the awards banquet. BRING LOTS OF DOUGH; EACH AND EVERY RIDER WILL BE AUCTIONED! Your favorite horse and rider team may pay off for you!
500/1,000 Mile Horses: Horses completing the ride five times will receive a 500 mile halter. Also, horses completing the ride ten times will receive a 1,000 mile blanket.
Wednesday, September 06, 2017
September 6 Update:
AHA Distance Nationals, Owyhee Canyonlands - October 6,7,8 Footing is generally good with trails and dirt 2-track roads. Might be dusty though.
Day 1 : CTR/30/50 will be one loop out of camp to Wildhorse Butte with an out-vetcheck.
Day 2 : 30/50 will be 2 loops out of basecamp, north into Birds of Prey and south to Hart Creek (there will be more rock on this loop).
Day 3: 25/55/100 will be one loop out of camp for 25 and 55, and 60 miles for 100’s. Ride along the base of the mountains, to Sinker Reservoir, then Wildhorse Butte, then home. 100 mile riders will then have 2 twenty mile loops out of basecamp. There will be some rocky road in the morning, mostly good footing remainder of the day.
Dinners will be provided with ride entry, and all meals available for purchase beginning Thursday evening.
Ride entry is through AHA, so fill out their registration form at https://www.arabianhorses.org/.content/nat-show/dnl-show/DNL17_Entry_Form-Fillable.pdf
Unfortunately there is no Junior discount (or fee waiver) through AHA. We suggest Juniors do a fundraiser at the venue (sell cookies?) and we will try to encourage staff and riders to help with entry fees.
Info: http://www.endurance.net/international/USA/2017AHAOwyheeCanyonlands/ and https://www.arabianhorses.org/competition/national-events/distance-nationals/
We don’t anticipate problems with fires in our desert region this fall - but stay posted.
Monday, August 28, 2017
AERC NC Nuggets are Short Soundbites from the 2017 AERC National Championships!
Story and photos by Merri Melde-Endurance.net
August 28 2017
Even if you're not a mountain climber, you've probably heard of K2, the second highest mountain in the world, thrusting skyward on the China-Pakistan border. What K2 makes up for in height compared with its first-highest counterpart Mt. Everest is that it's considered the world's toughest 8000-meter peak to climb.
That's why Samantha Browneller named her gelding Kaytwo, hoping he'd be the toughest horse around.
He certainly was on the August 18th 50-mile AERC National Championship in La Veta, Colorado. The 6-year-old homebred bay Arabian (HV Suns Heaven and Earth X Royal Damsel, by Monarch AH), owned by Sami's mom Linda, finished first of 34 starters, in a time of 4:32.59, over the tough mountain course.
Their nearest competitors were Cassidy Jaksch and Give Us a Kiss in second place in a ride time of 4:45.04, and Jennifer Poling aboard Eagle Baikal in third place, finishing in 4:45.06.
Sami, 30, broke and trained Kaytwo, and started him in endurance last year. The gelding now has a 10 for 10 record (includes 3 LDs) with 355 miles, all finishes in the top 3, with 7 wins and 3 Best Condition awards. One of Kaytwo's wins - the ride just before the AERC NC - was the Spanish Peaks 50 on July 22 with Sami aboard, over some of the same trails as the AERC NC. Sami started riding endurance in 2000, and now has just over 1300 miles.
"That's fast for this course!" said ride manager Tennessee Lane. "I'm happy for Sami; she was defending her home turf."
From Monument, Colorado, the Brownellers train their endurance horses over very similar terrain. Kaytwo digs this kind of tough, mountain trail, Sami said.
"Put him up against any mountain, and he'll show how tough he is!"
More stories, photos and videos from the ride at:
Saturday, August 26, 2017
August 25, 2017 at 5:00 am | By HEATHER SMITH THOMAS
EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the first of two parts about an endurance horse’s recovery.
Mike Maul, an endurance rider in Texas, has been campaigning a horse named Rroc (Rroco-My-Sol) for many years, with more than 11,000 career miles on endurance rides.
At one point, however, this horse had a life-threatening emergency.
“In 2004, we were headed out from Houston for a ride west of El Paso in New Mexico,” Maul says. “We got out in the middle of nowhere in west Texas and I stopped the pickup because Rroc was biting at his side and wanting to roll. So I found the closest vet, in a very small town.”
That vet had a mobile practice and gave Rroc the standard medications. These didn’t help, so Maul took Rroc to the nearest vet clinic. That veterinarian worked on Rroc from 5 p.m. until 11 p.m.
“He wasn’t making any progress so he recommended we head for Texas A&M for colic surgery. I left my other horse there, loaded Rroc and drove 350 miles to Texas A&M, getting there about 5 in the morning,” recalls Maul...
Read more here:
Friday, August 25, 2017
AERC NC Nuggets are Short Soundbites from the 2017 AERC National Championships!
by Merri Melde-Endurance.net
August 25 2017
I arrive in La Veta on Wednesday before the AERC National Championships. Tennessee settles me in a rented house with the V.I.P.s, the non-local veterinarians.
Jim Baldwin, from Oklahoma, is already there and settled in. Head vet Tom Currier, from Montana, should arrive with Carter Hounsel, from Virginia, around 1 AM. They're flying into Denver at night, hooking up there and driving Tennessee's jeep, that she left there for them, to La Veta, a 3 hour drive.
7 AM Thursday morning, my phone wakes me. It's Tennessee. "Seen Carter?" I shuffle out of my bedroom, and I see a bleary-eyed Tom, who says Carter wasn't in Denver, so Tom drove down alone. And Carter hasn't miraculously turned up on his own this morning.
"Ah, the joys of being a ride manager," I comment.
"My stomach hurts," Tennessee says.
She comes to the house in the midst of a whirlwind of ride prep activity, and says she's tracked him down. She talks the airlines into telling her that Carter is on a little plane from Denver to Alamosa, an hour away. "Can you possibly go get him?" she asks. "If you leave in 5 minutes, you should arrive right about the time he lands."
Sure, not a problem; one less unexpected time-consuming thing for a ride manager to do.
I take the pretty drive over La Veta Pass to Alamosa, arriving as the 6 passengers are getting their bags. No Carter. I talk to the nice Tiny Airline guy, who says, "Well, he *might* be on the next plane, which leaves Denver at noon."
I text Tennessee the news.
She texts back:
Where the #$(& is that man?"
She finally tracks him down, and he is on the next flight, and, after spending some long hours in Alamosa, where there really is not much to do, except walk through J.C. Penneys, and try the one coffee shop that has rather weak Americanos, I pick up Carter and zip him back to La Veta. He's been awake for over 24 hours, but he's still quite cheerful and humor-ful.
It's a good group of veterinarians for this AERC National Championship ride.
I was amazed Tom Currier even came to the ride - there's a fire raging right by his house. He evacuated all the animals and people from it and came down to vet this AERC NC ride. I'd be freaking out if that was my house. He shrugged. "Nothing I can do about it anyway." Tom's an endurance rider and endurance ride vet.
Jim Baldwin's been around forever. He's got a story for every occasion, from recently to forever ago. He originally worked on the racetrack, and he was one of Secretariat's vets when he was racing. One of his goals is to be the oldest vet at Tevis, and he thinks he accomplished that this year.
Many of you know Carter Hounsel as being from Texas, but now he's living in Virginia and is the emergency coordinator for 3 eastern states for the USDA. Carter's a good vet and a good teacher, and will explain anything you have questions about, if you want to learn.
Local vets Laura Blanton (and her assistant Vanilla the golden retriever - or, as I liked to refer to her as, Vanilla Pudding - who could imitate a flying squirrel and a sharpei) and Miranda Andress rounded out the excellent vet team for the Championships.
Good camaraderie, good laughs, good weekend.
More stories, photos and videos from the ride at:
Thursday, August 24, 2017
Come experience some warm winter riding and no mud.
Git R Done FEI 1*2*3* Nov 4, 2017 Inyokern, CA.
Get that COC done! Or check off another 2*
Fire Mountain FEI 1* and Two day 2* January 13-14, 2018 Ridgecrest, CA
Twenty Mule Team FEI 1*2* February 24, 2018 Ridgecrest, CA
Fire Up FEI 1*2*3* April 21-22, 2018 Ridgecrest, CA same location as Fire Mt with a faster 3* trail.
All rides are subject to approval from AERC, USEF and FEI
The Shagya-Arabians entering The Tevis Cup Ride this year proved true to their heritage of a horse bred to master the rigors and versatility of a good cavalry horse. The Performance Shagya-Arabian Registry (PShR) congratulates their registered horses Lily Creek Kong, a Shagya-Arabian Sporthorse, ridden by Cameron Holzer and Ninja PFF, a Shagya-Arabian gelding, ridden by Shauna Glorioso on their Tevis completions as they placed 16th and 43rd out of 174 starters August 5-6, 2017.
The Tevis Cup, a 100 mile endurance ride staged out of Auburn, CA, is considered one of the toughest rides in North America with an average completion rate of only 50%. Ninja PFF received special recognition this year as a recipient of the Wendell Robie Trophy. Named after the founder of the Tevis ride this honor is for any horse who has completed five times.
Only a small group of elite horses have reached this status with 60 recognized since the beginning of the ride in 1955 according to Deborah Lyon with the Western States Trail Foundation.
When asked about the ride Cameron Holzer, rider and owner of Lily Creek Kong, and Judith Moore, owner of Ninja PFF, both had glowing reports of how their horses handled the ride. Holzer stated that “Kong never tires, and just keeps trucking along. Every time I asked him for more speed he would give it to me. This is an inherent trait for him, he never gives up on me the whole 100 miles.” Moore had similar comments for Ninja PFF who “has a resting heart rate of 36 beats per minute, so he just breezes through the vet checks. Ninja makes a 100 mile ride look easy and keeps getting better every time.” That last statement is reinforced by the fact that despite a potential career ending stifle injury as a 5 year old Ninja has completed Tevis 5 times and currently has 2590 miles recorded in competitions. Moore said her proudest moment of the day was when Ninja was awarded the Wendell Robie Trophy and stated that it was “nice to have an award recognizing the horse” and that Ninja receiving it made her tear up a little.
Holzer’s proud moment of the day was how Kong handled the canyons. “I thought they would be hard on him and he breezed through. I was the tired one! I felt like I was holding him back all day.”
While Shagya-Arabians are less common than other breeds, both Moore and Holzer can’t stop singing the praises of their Shagya-Arabians and are sure that once a person loves a Shagya-Arabian you’re hooked for life. Holzer says that “you won’t find a tougher or more loyal horse than a Shagya-Arabian.” Moore said that the number one quality of the horses is “a great temperament, they are very personable, smart and sweet.” However she also notes that the Shagya-Arabian is “the best all-purpose horse and can do whatever they want to do.”
About Performance Shagya-Arabian Registry
The Shagya-Arabian was started in 1789 when the Hungarian military set out to develop a new breed of horse that combined the very best of Bedouin Arabians -- elegance, endurance, hardiness, athleticism, temperament, and devotion to their rider -- with larger size, jumping ability, and riding ease to master the rigors and versatility of a cavalry horse.
The Performance Shagya-Arabian Registry was established to ensure the integrity and legacy of the Shagya-Arabian bred horses in North America. To accomplish these goals the organization holds regular breed inspections and utilizes performance testing in compliance with internationally established criteria for all horses in the registry. For more information on the Performance Shagya-Arabian Registry and our horses please visit our website: http://performanceshagyaregistry.org.
For More Information and Photos
Contact: Nicole Mauser-Storer
By Jared Pendak
Valley News Staff Writer
Thursday, August 24, 2017
Hartland — Elite young equestrian rider Katelyn Baldino enjoys the endurance discipline more than any other, relishing the bond between herself and the horses through miles of natural terrain.
For the upcoming FEI World Championships for Young Riders and Juniors, both Baldino and her horse will be traveling great lengths just to get to the 75-mile course.
Baldino, a University of Georgia sophomore, and Synthetic, a 17-year-old Arabian gelding owned by Hartland rider Melody Blittersdorf, will be flying to Verona, Italy, for the world championships from Sept. 22-24.
It’s not the first time either will have gone to a different continent to compete. Two years ago, Baldino competed in the same event at a venue in Santo Domingo, Chile, the same course where Blittersdorf rode Synthetic at the 2011 Senior Pan Am Games...
Read more here:
Tuesday, August 22, 2017
AERC NC Nuggets are Short Soundbites from the 2017 AERC National Championships!
by Merri Melde-Endurance.net
August 22 2017
She calls this southwest corner of Colorado "God's Country."
"You'll know why we call it God's country when you get here," AERC National Championship ride manager Tennessee Lane said.
Indeed, the scenery and terrain of the 2017 AERC National Championships outside of La Veta, Colorado, are impressive. Los Cumbres Espanolos, the two 12,000 and 13,000-foot Spanish Peaks, tower above Ridecamp for the Spanish Peaks endurance rides and this year's AERC National Championships.
National Forest land covers the upper thousands of feet of the peaks, and ranchers own the lower graze-able mesas and grass lands, over which the entire 50-mile and 100-mile AERCNC rides took place, 130 miles of unrepeated trails. Tennessee had to bend over backwards to keep the ranchers happy to use these private trails - over 20 local ranchers allow Tennessee the use of their lands - and one can only ride these trails during her endurance rides.
Tennessee's ridden some 9700 AERC endurance miles since 2006, but she only started hosting endurance rides in God's Country in 2016. Her SoCo Endurance was an ambitious project, putting on a tough mountainous 2-day ride in June and a 25/50/100 in September, and this year a 3-day ride in June and a 2-day in July. It was one of the reasons AERC approached her to put on this year's National Championships in August.
Constricted by hunting dates (bow hunting season started a few days after the NC, and hunters were afraid the horses would scare the game off their game trails), August 18-20 was the only weekend Tennessee could host the National Championships. And the event happened to fall at a very busy time: two weeks after she rode in and won the Tevis Cup, which was 2 weeks after she put on her July ride.
Talk about pressure. "Yeah I'm a little crazy," she said. "But… it should be easier than putting on multi-days rides with multi-distances, right? I'll catch up on my sleep in the winter."
A microbiologist in a former life, Tennessee has returned to her ranching roots. She manages the family's cattle land/leasing operation in the area, manages another family business, and owns and runs her own Remuda Run Ranch, where she breeds/trains/sells endurance horses, and offers endurance clinics, hoof boot consultation and services, and, of course puts on endurance rides.
It's great country for endurance ride training. It's where Auli Farwa - Tennessee's mount for this year's Tevis - trained for a couple of months before the pair took the Tevis Cup win on August 5.
"These endurance rides are a true representation of the Southern Colorado Rockies," Tennessee stated, "with miles of fast, flowing sections broken up by challenging, technical stretches and plenty of up and down. These rides have been thoughtfully designed to be very enjoyable and safe but also stimulating and demanding on endurance athletes both equine and human. They're tough, technical mountain endurance rides."
It's great country for gasping and gawking, too. Riders and horses would experience the lower flanks of the western Spanish Peak, with vistas of the layers of Rocky Mountains to the West and the Colorado plains to the east, and they'd ride through one of the iconic rock walls that radiate out from the peaks.
Altitudes for the National Championships would range from 7000 to 9000 feet. One particular loop would have a 1000 foot drop. "I ride up it to train," Tennessee said. "but I felt it was safer to take riders down the trail."
The National Championionships in God's Country below the Spanish Peaks would serve up scenery, fun, and a challenging endurance trail that tested a rider's horsemanship.
Tennessee and enthusiastic landowner George Albright, who helped build trails and lent his hay field for Albright vet check
More stories, photos and videos from the ride at: