Friday, June 14, 2019

First Leg of Inaugural Idaho IronHorse Challenge a Boisterous Success

Three Pioneer Rides, Nine Days, One Amazing Challenge -- Are you made of Iron?

by Merri
June 15 2019

Challenging weather, beautiful scenery, tough desert and mountain trails: the first leg of the inaugural Idaho Ironhorse Challenge showcased a taste of what Idaho endurance riding has to offer at the City of Rocks Pioneer ride near Almo, Idaho on June 6-8.

Together with the July 26-28 Top O' The World Pioneer ride near Spencer, Idaho, and the Autumn Sun Pioneer ride October 10-13 near Gooding, Idaho, this 'Triple Crown' challenge idea was the brainchild of ride managers 'The Two Jessicas'.

"The idea was mine initially," said Autumn Sun ride manager Jessica Huber.  "Then [Top O' the World ride manager Jessica] Cobbley and I put it together as we marked trail across the desert!" Steph Teeter's City of Rocks Pioneer was the obvious choice for the first leg of the challenge.

One horse & rider, nine days, 465 miles

Following the conclusion of City of Rocks Pioneer, 27 horse and rider teams and/or riders are in contention for some version of the Idaho IronHorse crown.

The Idaho IronHorse

Four horse and rider teams completed all 3 days of 50's:
Lee Pearce & JAC Winterhawk
Merri Melde & Owyhee Shotgun Rider (owned by Steph Teeter)
Debbie Grose & Jackpot Jackson
Nance Worman & Second Chance Fance

The Idaho IronHorse LD
Fourteen horse and rider teams completed all 3 days of Limited Distance:
Joan Zachary & Chico
Carrie Johnson & Payback Daysea Duke
Catherine Cook & HMR Diamonds R Forever
Carol Delisi & DJ Restless Wind
Tonya Stroud-Oaks & Amara's Sonata
Terry Doyle & Benny
LuAnn Rod & Shakeel's Sparkle
Marlene Moss & SA Alamo
Stace Moss & Cerro Blanco
Donna Lacy-Bacon & Echcentric DPA
Katrin Levermann & Double Bey Latte
Clarissa Hale & SB Above The Law
Kaili Worth & Red
Sandy Smallwood & Ty

The Idaho IronButt
Six riders completed all 3 days on different horses, any distance:
Bill Hobbs & Segulls Jester/JV Remington
Dave Rabe & White Cloud/Rushcreek Okay/Cocamoe Joe
David Laws & Che Ole/Fancy Grace
Viginia Jenkins & TM Concealed Carrie/RA China Doll
Trinity Jackson & Ebony/Hope/Rusty
Christy Pogue & Serya Nyte Flyte/Stormy Mae

The Idaho IronTeam

Three horse and rider teams completed all 3 days of different distances:
Bobbi Walker & Dreamer
Valerie Jaques & BS Malabar Dark Demon
Shyla Williams & Bes Soumra Bint Karah

It's six weeks till the start of the second leg of the Idaho IronHorse Challenge at Top O' The World Pioneer. Stay tuned!

More info on the Idaho Ironhorse at:

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Monk: Another Tevis Finish Means Robie Cup

by Jaya Mae Gregory

I first saw Monk during the Haggin Cup judging a few years ago. It was a year I had not finished the Tevis Cup myself and so I was rested well enough to enjoy the judging. His rider, Lindsay Graham Fisher, was a fit and young 30-something. She trotted him out with grace and ease, but he didn’t show as well as the other horses. “He doesn’t trot like a normal Arab, but that’s just him,” says Lindsay. Those who know him best call his trot the “Monk Shuffle.” According to Lindsay, there is no wasted movement in his gaits.

Lindsay first began riding Monk about 10 years ago. The now 17-year-old CMK Arab surprised his rider and owner when he casually trotted to a first place finish at the 2009 AERC National Championship. “We just cruised to first place completely by accident,” said Lindsay. “It was a very humbling experience. That was when I knew what kind of horse I had underneath me.”

Since 2009, Monk has completed several AERC and FEI rides. In 2012, Monk finished strong after 100 miles at the President’s Cup in Abu Dhabi. “He looked like a million bucks.” But then he went off to Texas and injured his suspensory. Monk suffered a 50% tear in the ligament, an injury which should have been career ending. However, Monk’s owner, Chris Martin, sent him to UC Davis for stem cell therapy. He was off the rest of 2012 and 2013, but came back strong in 2014.

Since recovering from his injury, Monk has finished the Tevis Cup with his rider Lindsay four consecutive times. Four consecutive times, all in the Top Ten. This year, Monk could not only earn the Robie Cup honor, awarded to those horses who have five Tevis Cup finishes, but if he also finishes in the Top Ten again, he could be the second horse to earn this honor five consecutive years all in the Top Ten, after the horse Wetezarif.

When asked about their secret to success, Lindsay replied, “He gets to just be a horse. He has intense training, but he also gets to just be a horse. He is always ready to go all season. He is always moving, he is always fit.” Owner Chris Martin has Monk living out on several acres and he carefully monitors his weight. He also incorporates a lot of hill work into Monk’s training and does a lot of conditioning miles without the weight of a rider. All of this has proven to work for Monk in the past, and hopefully, his ride through the Tevis Cup this coming August will be another success and earn him the honor of the Robie Cup award.

Regardless of whether or not Monk finishes the Tevis Cup this year, however, he will always hold a permanent place in Lindsay’s heart. “I just feel really lucky that he came into my life. I thought it was going to be a short one or two year thing and even though he’s not my horse, he feels like my horse. [One day] He will get to live out his life with me and get to be loved on by my kids. He’s a very special horse.”

Saturday, June 01, 2019

Tevis: The Road to the Start

Posted Monday, May 27, 2019 8:05pm

Ride Director Message

Tevis training is in full swing. It is always enjoyable to see riders training for Tevis at the west region 50-mile rides. Weather has been cooler than normal here in the west. All of us on the ride committee watch snow levels in the high country and continue to compare year-to-year numbers for patterns in snow melt for planning purposes.

This year’s snow levels, while significant, are behind those of 2017. The ride date has been pushed back to August 17, which in one of the latest dates we have used for running the ride. Therefore, I am confident we will start at Robie Park in August.

Please note that the Western States Endurance Run is happening on Saturday, June 29 and avoid training rides on the trail during that time. If you are in the area, I would encourage you to go to the Placer High School Stadium to watch the runner arrive. The bond between the runners and the riders continues to grow stronger as we support each other. We actually have WSER participants and Board members managing some vet checks and stops at the Tevis this year.

It will be a great year to ride, so please remember the ride date is one month later than previously published, and ride your horse accordingly for the longer season. If you are leasing a horse to ride in the Tevis, we strongly recommend that you check the horse’s record on the AERC website and do your due diligence in selecting your mount.

The Tevis committee does everything it can to make Tevis as safe and enjoyable as possible while maintaining the challenge of crossing the Sierra Nevada Mountains in 24 hours.

The opportunity to support trail maintenance and development is a huge benefit to the organization and is achieved by participation in the Signature Rider Program. Signature riders receive an $800 tax-deductible donation letter in addition to some amazing, high quality swag. If you have questions regarding this program, please email Linda Glazier at We encourage you to be part of this program.

Much more information at: