ArabianHorseWorld.com - Full Story
by Genie Stuart-Spears
Successfully completing 50- or 100-mile endurance rides in one day, one horse, one rider, requires building a partnership between horse and rider in order to enjoy mile after mile of trail. It begins with finding the right horse and doing lots of in-hand ground and arena work, lots of training and conditioning time on the trail, and most importantly, starting with short distances and riding to complete, not be competitive, for at least the first few years or more. It takes years to build a working partnership. And, emphasizes Stagg Newman, “Patience, patience, and patience!”
Having competed in endurance and competitive trail riding since the mid-1980s, Stagg and Cheryl Newman, both 68 years old, have over 15,000 combined career miles on some very tough trails and on some very tough Arabian horses.
Partnering up with a spouse or significant other to train and compete can be as difficult or as easy as partnering up with a horse. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.
For the Newmans, training and competition is teamwork — an extension of their marriage. Stagg says, “Riding together has actually strengthened our marriage because of the quality time we spend together training and competing. We share the passion for horses and distance riding. We frequently help each other on trail, giving encouragement, making sure that each of us is eating and drinking, riding in balance, and so forth...
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