Luskherald.com - Full Article
Posted: Thursday, Jul 23rd, 2009
Phyllis Hahn/Contributing Writer
On July 2, Carla Stroh went to Wheatland to a historic ranch to enter an Endurance Race the next day.
It was her second Endurance Race after winning first place in a 30 mile ride the year before. Stroh rode the 2009 challenging ride of 55 miles on a horse that she affectionately calls "Spook". She recruited a visiting friend, Barb Orr from Mesa, Ariz., to be her "crew", a responsibility that involves helping out with the stops that are a part of the race.
Every rider had their horse checked by the vet, Max Smiley, before entering and then again at regular intervals for conditions, including hydration, capillary refill, pulse and respiration. Riders carry a card with them to be filled out at each check. If any horse shows signs of stress, it gets pulled from the race. The race began at 6 a.m. and Stroh and her crew member Orr rose at 4 a.m. to be sure they had time to feed Spook and be sure he was ready to ride without being rushed.
There were 44 starters at the beginning of the ride, with six riders starting out at a gallop up a steep and rocky hill. Stroh stated "I kept Spook with the second bunch of riders that took a more leisurely pace as I knew there were miles to go yet and the idea is to get your horse to the finish line...".