Thursday, August 31, 2006

Bahrain: Shaikha Najla finishes 8th

Gulf Daily News
BAHRAIN's top female rider Shaikha Najla bint Salman bin Saqer Al Khalifa clinched an eighth-place finish at the French Combian Endurance Race near Paris. Shaikha Najla, who took part in the Watford Race last month in the UK, competed in this 119-km race with top riders from Europe such as Jack Peugeot and Fillip Tuma, and managed to complete the event among the top 10. The young Bahraini rider said she was pleased over her performance and result at the race during which more than 100 riders were in the fray.

"The race was very important for me to gain more experience and confidence ahead of the new season which starts after the summer break," said Shaikha Najla.

"I encountered some hard times during the race due to the tough surface and the stiff competition among most of the participants who are well experienced. I am really looking forward to take part in further races in the near future," she said.

Shaikha Najla was accompanied by her father Shaikh Salman bin Saqer Al Khalifa, Shaikh Ahmed bin Saqer Al Khalifa and other delegation officials.

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Monday, August 28, 2006

NZ: Eketahuna rider toast of equestrian champs

Wairarapa Times-Age
23.08.2006

Eketahuna horseman Shane Dougan was the toast of the New Zealand team and his horse the centre of overseas attention after the combination finished eighth in the endurance race at the World Equestrian Games in Germany yesterday.

Dougan, and his 10-year-old Arabian stallion Vigar Riffal produced New Zealand's best endurance result at a World Games on the way to overtaking a dozen other combinations in an extra quick final loop in the 160km event.

Dougan averaged 41km/h in the final of the six loops after finishing the first in 70th place of the 159 starters.

"He could have gone quicker," Dougan said.

"There was plenty left in the tank, he's a great little horse."
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EnduranceNet Coverage

Sunday, August 27, 2006

FEI: President Haya Focuses on the Future

FEI PRESIDENT?S PRESS CONFERENCE
Speech by HRH Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein of Jordan
2006 FEI World Equestrian Games, Aachen
27 August 2006

I will concentrate today on the FEI as an organisation, as I believe from discussions over the last few days that this is the area that you would be interested in and I will outline clear deliverables and the approach.

As a result I will speak less about horses than perhaps I would like ? but that is because it goes without saying that they are the reason that we are here ? and their partners are those we, the FEI, ultimately are here to celebrate and serve.

My own experiences as an athlete mean that this is never far from my mind ? my experience of this at grass roots level and my many friends in the sport mean that I am privileged to be able to keep my fingers on this pulse ? and I am aware, as true friends are, of what they are critical of in the organisation. My vision for them is similar to that of the IOC ? "for the athletes by the athletes". I hope that by the end of my tenure as President, I will not only have created an organisation that walks this road hand in hand with them, but also that we will have created through them a future generation equipped to run and serve the horse world by allowing them open entry into the ranks of the organisation, and give them the tools in addition to those of their field to do this with complete professionalism.

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Festival Modail d'Endurance: Compienge

From: "David-specialized saddles"


Eighty four horses vetted in the Young horse 119k world Championship today at Compiegne France.The grounds became crowded compared to preceding days as the entrants and crews arrived for the climaxing event here

Everyone gathered in the big dining tent to sample the finest buffet I have ever enjoyed with more variety of food and desserts than I knew existed. All prepared by a staff of top notch chefs and complete with ample bottles of wine on each table.

During the vetting in a thunder storm interrupted things for about twenty minutes.the ground is wet but the footing is sand over clay and the mud isn't deep and footing will be good, and speeds are expected to be fast. The quality an depth of talent was evident in the team 160 k championship with 15 horses finishing under ten hours.Start is 7am,
===============

KIDSON LORNA of GBR took the lead and held it to take a seven minute lead in the first 30K loop averaging 17.5 k per hour.

Although recent winners of championship rides have nearly always come from mid pack with a seriss of negative splits to take the lead late, she's going against conventional wisdom, the very strong field of french horses, and has held on thru the second vet gate.

From the confident look in her eye and the look of her horse she just might pull it off.

Over Twenty horses are within ten minutes of the leader at this point following the second vet check so as they say, its anyones race.

===============
In an exciting climax,nine riders left the final vet gate 3, within six minutes of each other, all at a hand gallop.

Stephanie Arnal of France riding a modest size grey Stallion was in first,followed by Romua Theisman of Belgium who was a large man on a large chestnut.

The finish was on a turf course in front of hundreds of spectators. it was Jean Frances of France who romped into view with hammer down, followed closely by Stephanie Arnal, finishing in 6:18 having run the last loop of 21kilometers in an average of 24 k per hour and 18;5 k for the day. it would be another 10 minutes before 3rd place Romua Theisman crossed the line for third.

All watched the carefully scrutinized trots for completion and Jean had to retrot before the jury of vets gave the thumbs up to a roar of the crowd.

What a race, great photos to follow.

Hi from France,
Sephanne Arrnal riiding Liana el Baraka, the second place horse, took the Best Condition. It seems her horse was a mare, not a stallion, as I previously reported.

your correspondent in France
David kaden


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Thursday, August 24, 2006

CAN: North Wind Canadian Championships

Kristen Howard and her horse Amy are ready to embark on a 160-kilometre trip during the North Wind Canadian Championships

By Cory Smith
Woodstock Centinel-Review

As Kristen Howard rode her horse up a switchback in Indiana, the picturesque surroundings took her breath away.
Beneath her was a valley laced with red bud and dogwood trees, cloaked in fog as the sun peeked out along the horizon. It was the kind of moment Howard and her 12-year-old Arabian mare Amy have shared numerous times as they travel the continent, but one they never get tired of.
For the Woodstock-area native, it?s the best part of being an endurance horse racer.
"It was neat because it was such a rush going up, and as we came down it was like we were descending into the fog," Howard said. ?Anything from the hilltop I like. It?s very scenic.
"You feel like, ?Oh my god, I?m so glad I?m alive.? It really rejuvenates you."
Howard will need to be every bit refreshed as she prepares to take Amy on the longest journey of their lives - the North Wind Canadian Championships, a 100-mile endurance race that, if finished, will take over half a day to complete.
"Amy has her way of doing things and she?s quite sensitive," Howard said of the prize-winning horse she purchased as a filly from a woman in Arthur. "If you don?t know how to ride her, she won?t do it for you, but once you learn, she?ll do anything."
Unlike harness or thoroughbred racing, the sport of endurance racing is more about slow and steady than winning the race, although Howard or any of her fellow riders wouldn?t have a problem with finishing first.
Beautifully wooded trails, vivid valleys and rocky streams replace the track, while the only sure bet is that the riders aren?t in it for the money.
The Competitive Trail Riding Association?s motto of 'to finish is to win' encapsulates perfectly the laid back approach of the sport.
"You spend so much time with your horse and you get a connection like no other," Howard said. "You know if anything is wrong and you just sense it. You get to see parts of the country and the U.S. on the back of a horse. I see a lot of places that I wouldn?t normally see."

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Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Spain and France Claim First Medals at 2006 WEG; Spain?s Ubach Takes Gold; America?s Top Rider Finishes 15th

By Brian Sosby

Long before the sun rose over the first day of competition at the 2006 FEI World Equestrian Games (WEG) in Aachen, a flurry of activity was going on as the stage was set for the first medal decisions made in the equestrian discipline of endurance. The consensus is that today’s championship served as the biggest in the sport’s interesting development and history, and the fact that temperatures didn’t make it much past the mid-60 degree range were a blessing to those who had feared that the heat that Germany saw weeks ago might wreak havoc in a sport where weather conditions can send the placings into a scramble.

Crews, horses, riders, inspectors and a contingency of blurry-eyed spectators woke up the proverbial rooster. Riders and their mounts took off under a dark rose-colored early morning sky just outside the Main Stadium near the start of the cross-country course. The 100-mile route saw them traverse a mix of terrain and territory through three countries – Germany, The Netherlands and Belgium. The teams took off en masse at 6 a.m.

At the end of the long haul, it was 34-year-old Spaniard Miguel Vila Ubach and the eight-year-old Arabian gelding, Hungares, to cross the finish line first in a time of 09:12:27. Over the nine-plus hour ride, Ubach and Hungares averaged a pace of 10.8 miles per hour (or 17.38 kilometers per hour). He steadily climbed the rankings over the course, always leaving something in the tank, from a first gate finish of 47th to 33rd to 21st to 16th to 8th to his final victory.

Throwing his helmet into the air just after clearing the line, his expressions and tears told the whole story. Prior to his win today in Aachen, Ubach was listed at #86 on the FEI World Ranking of endurance riders.

In April 2006, Ubach won the CEI Three-Star Cordoba ride in his home country. He acknowledged that his competition today was tough, saying, “I knew all the best riders in the world were here from the U.A.E. and France.” An enthusiastic and appreciative crowd cheered and clapped as the pairing claimed their place as the first World Champion to be crowned at the 2006 WEG. “I can’t believe it,” he said in a downpour while still standing on the victory field.

For France, who was favored going into the competition, it was a double-medal haul after the rain-soaked challenge. French teammates Virginie Atger and her eight-year-old Arabian gelding Kangoo d’Aurabelle took the Silver medal while her compatriot Elodie Le Labourier and the 16-year-old Arabian gelding Sangho Limousian brought a Bronze-medal finish.

Atger and Le Labourier road neck-and-neck to the finish. There was no charge to the end. Instead, each rider crossed it with acknowledgement to the other in a display of sportsmanship.

The Gold medal in the team competition was won by France. The Swiss team finished in Silver-medal position, and the Bronze medal went to Portugal.

The American Effort
Finishing lead among the American contingent was Maine’s Kathryn Downs and her 10-year-old Arabian gelding, Pygmalion. Entering Gate 1 at 50th place, the pair climbed in the rankings over the morning to stand at 20th at Gate 2. They continued their effort, improving their standings by five spots to land at 15th by the time they entered Gate 3. They held their own, slipping down only two placings by Gate 4 and finished their 10:06:27-hour journey at 15th place.

Second spot for Team U.S.A. was filled by New Jersey’s Meg Sleeper, DVM, and her14-year-old half-Arabian gelding Shyrocco Troilus. The pair sat at 68th position after Gate 1 was cleared and jumped an impressive 24 spots upon checking in at Gate 3 to sit at 34th position. They continued their climb, pushing past another 11 riders to come in at 23rd at Gate 4. Final times and results were not available due to computer problems in the main press center.

California’s Jennifer Niehaus and Cheyenne XII, the 14-year-old Arabian gelding, stepped into competition as the first alternate. The pairing cleared Gate 1 in 75th; Gate 2 in 81st; Gate 3 in 75th; and Gate 4 in 69th. Niehaus and Cheyenne XII’s results were also not available due to computer problems in the main press center.

Illinois’ Joseph Mattingley aboard his SA Laribou (an 11-year-old Arabian gelding) made it as far as Gate 4 before being eliminated due to lameness. The pair had put in a respectable effort crossing Gate 1 at 78th; Gate 2 at 83rd; and Gate 3 at 70th. Their elimination left only four American riders in the running.

American Christoph Schork from Utah, who rode his eight-year-old Arabian gelding, Taj Rai Hasan, was pulled at the last vet check. Across the day, Schork and Taj Rai Hasan sat at 64th place at Gate 1 and 74th at Gate 2. From that point, the pair pushed forward, jumping 34 places to come into Gate 3 at 40th position, but they slid back a bit in the standings to land at 57th leaving Gate 4.

Team U.S.A. Chef d’Equipe and former WEG Endurance Champion Valerie Kanavy lent her extensive experience and advice to the U.S. team. One point of advice she shared with the riders just prior to the start of the ride…”Don’t get kicked.” The start of the race resembled a packed charge of Bedouin riders taking off.

More Than Just A Race
In the sport of endurance, horse-and-rider combinations face not only the extreme distances, but a series of what are known as vet gates – mandatory stops on the race where the riders dismount and the horses are checked by a veterinary crew. The condition of the horse is paramount in continuing along the long distance course, and it is at the vet gates where the horses are held for inspection. Among the many criteria checked at the vet gate are the horse’s heart rate, temperature and other metabolic factors, as well as general condition and soundness. Riders approach the predetermined vet gates and dismount, allowing the horses to access water and nourishment, plus it allows the riders to replenish their own needs. The findings of the veterinarians are recorded on the vet cards (including the riders’ arrival and departure times). A horse may be declared lame and may be withdrawn from the competition.

At the World Championships, individual and team medals are presented. A single horse-and-rider’s time is used to determine the individual champion. The team championship is decided based on the combined times of three predetermined “team score” members.

Two vet gates were established along the ride, with teams crossing them more than once. Vet Gate 1 was situated at Dreilanderpunkt (where horses were inspected after loops 1-4) and Vet Gate 2 Soers (for loops 5-6).

Endurance was officially welcomed under the umbrella of the International Equestrian Federation (FEI) and recognized as an international horse sport. Centuries ago, Bedouin tribes placed bets on endurance-type races. Just over a century ago, German and Austrian military officers held similar races between Vienna and Berlin. Today, endurance has seen an explosion of interest with numbers growing impressively in the United States.

For complete time listings and all endurance scores, visit http://www.endurance.net/2006wec/results/index.html

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

WEC: Horse's injury derails N.J. rider's hopes at worlds

BY NANCY JAFFER
For the Star-Ledger

AACHEN, Germany -- After a 100-mile ride that ended in the rain and mud, Meg Sleeper's faith in her horse and herself paid off as she completed the endurance championship at the World Equestrian Games under difficult conditions.

If only U.S. team officials had expressed the same faith in the Hunterdon County woman and her mount, America would have had a placing in the event. But they decided Sleeper should ride her home-bred Shyrocco Troilusas as an individual competitor, rather than as part of the team, after the half-Arabian gelding bruised his hoof a few days ago.

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WEC: Spanish rider takes endurance gold at Aachen

Abigail Butcher
Horse & Hound
Spaniard Miguel Vila Ubach made history yesterday when he was crowned king of endurance at the Aachen 2006 World Equestrian Games.

A damp but lively crowd cheered the triumphant rider, on the grey Arab Hungares as he cantered alone into the main stadium at Aachen, minutes before second and third-placed French riders Virginie Atger and Elodie Le Labourier appeared together. He had taken the lead a few kilometres before the finish.

The 32-year-old rider was part of the silver-medal winning Spanish endurance team at the Hague (1994) but this was the first time the country has taken gold.

?I knew we were good but I don't believe I'm here today,? Miguel declared at the press conference that followed his arrival. ?I was a European Champion back in 1999 and I've been dreaming for another title ever since but I'd never have thought it would be this one.?

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WEC: Awards Wrap-Up

http://www.endurance.net/2006wec/awards.html

The sky was mercifully blue for the Endurance prize-giving ceremony which took place today in the main stadium of the 2006 FEI World Equestrian Games at Aachen. The medals and flowers were presented by the FEI President, HRH Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein.

The World Champion Miguel Vila Ubach (ESP) could still not believe his luck. He had not been able to sleep last and was still in a dreamy state. He was especially satisfied by the freshness and fitness of his horse.

France, the World Team Champions, highlighted ones again the quality of their team effort. Given the technical difficulty of the course, they had decided to stay together for as many as 100 km, making their final effort towards victory in the final stages of the competition. The French are well known of the great number of quality horses they have. ?My job is very difficult and very easy at the same time,? French Chef d?Equipe commented. ?It is easy because there is so much talent to choose from; it is difficult because at a certain moment a decision has to be made and there?s so much talent that will be left behind.?

For the second time in history, Switzerland wins a silver medal in a World Endurance Championship. The team is composed of one man, Urs Wenger on Zialka, and three women Anna Lena Wagner on Tessa IV, Nora Wagner on Temir and Karin Maiga on Platyn (drop score); two ladies, Anna Lena, 18, and Nora, 19, are sisters. The strategy of the Swiss had been slightly different but almost equally efficient. They had decided to let Urs ride in front, at the risk of being eliminated, and having the ladies follow slightly behind.

Another great achievement is that of the Portuguese team, in bronze, who won here in Aachen their very first equestrian medal. Team member Joao Raposo is sixth individually, which is the best individual placement by a Portuguese rider.

The French team had yet another cause for celebration. The 11-year old mare Hifrane du Barthas ridden by Pascale Dietsch won the Best Condition Award. It is given on the basis of points earned throughout the competition on a pre-agreed scale on the basis of various criteria. Additional points are awarded depending on the final placement and on the horse?s condition under veterinary inspection conducted the following day. Given the degree of veterinary control that exists in the sport of Endurance, the Best Condition Award is just as important and valuable as the final medal.

Kanavy hopes to revive US domination

Gulf Daily News
By M. Satya Narayan, Staff Reporter

Aachen, Germany: Two-time world endurance champion Valerie Kanavy is here at the World Equestrian Games endurance championship in a new role.

A regular competitor on the international circuit, Kanavy won the second of her gold medals in the UAE in 1998. She also has a silver medal to her credit, finishing second behind her daughter Daniella.

Here in Aachen, Kanavy is the Chef de Equipe of the US team, a role which is certain to bring out the fighting qualities that she displayed as a rider par excellence.

Since 1998 the US domination over the endurance sport has been halted with France and the UAE grabbing most of the limelight.

"Yes, we have lost out to other countries. But we are working towards regaining the past glory," Kanavy told Gulf News as she went about directing her team of five riders.

"In the past the US equestrian authorities have not taken some constructive advice from the riders. However, now I can try and implement some of the ideas and I am confident that we can be back as a strong force," said Kanavy.

Becky Hart won three world titles after another American Cassandra Schuler won the first title at the inaugural event in 1986. Valerie and her daughter won the next three before the French put an end to the US domination in 2000 with a 1-2-3 finish. In 2002 the UAE won the individual gold and France took it again in 2005.

"We have a strong talent as far as riders are concerned. But it is also true that riders from the UAE have become world-beaters in a short span of time. His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, is an ace horseman and under his guidance the UAE have done very well," she said.

The grandmother-champion from US, however, stated that she had not quit competitive riding and was looking forward to getting back to the saddle.

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WEC: Ubach and Hungares take Games' first gold

The Independent Online

A massed start of 159 endurance riders from 42 countries got the World Equestrian Games off to a spectacular start at 6am yesterday.

But there was a long 160 kilometres and some drenching rain ahead before Spain's Miguel Vila Ubach cantered into the main arena at Aachen on the sodden grey Hungares and Spain claimed their first endurance gold medal.

Yesterday's route took riders through three countries - Belgium and the Netherlands as well as Germany. It took more than 12 hours for the Spaniard to finish and some of his opponents spent much longer in the saddle.

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WEC: Bahrain's pair complete race

Gulf Daily News

SHAIKH Nasser bin Hamad Al Khalifa and Shaikh Daij bin Salman Al Khalifa successfully completed the 160-km endurance race at the World Equestrian Games yesterday in Aachen, Germany.

Riding Shar Ruskhkin, Shaikh Daij was the first to complete the race among the five-member Bahraini team, led by Bahrain Royal Equestrian and Endurance Federation (Breef) president Shaikh Nasser who was riding Ganda Koy.

Shaikh Daij was 10th and Shaikh Nasser 15th.

The race was held under heavy rains. The remaining team members were Breef first vice-president Shaikh Khalid bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Shaikh Salman bin Saqer Al Khalifa and Yousef Taher.

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WEC: Spaniard heads off French riders to win Endurance


Today in Aachen, the Spanish rider Miguel Vila Ubach (ESP), 33, aboard the grey Arabian gelding Hungares, won the Individual world title in Endurance.

Two young French ladies join him on the podium: Virginie Atger, 22, on Kangoo d'Aurabelle in silver and Elodie Le Labourier, 24, on Sangho'Limousian in bronze.

This is the first time since the FEI World Endurance Championships began in 1986 that a Spanish rider has won the supreme title.

This definitely was an emotional victory. After 160km in six loops and a riding time of 9 hours 12 min 27 seconds, the winning pair entered the main stadium to cross the finishing line in a torrential downpour. The crowd cheered loudly the new World Champion and the tears of rider and crew were streaming down with the rain drops.

"I knew we were good but I don't believe I'm here today," a happy Miguel declared at the press conference that followed his arrival. "I was a European Champion back in 1999 and I've been dreaming for another title ever since but I'd never have thought it would be this one."

The pair were in 47th position after the fourth vetgate but this had not discouraged them. On the contrary, they had been saving their strength for the last 13km loop. "I knew my horse could fly over the last bit. We rode out of the vetgate, I saw the French girls and decided to follow them as I was sure they would get good placings. The horse felt so strong that we found ourselves quite up front. And then I felt we could make it and decided to just go for it.
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Kiwi finishes 8th in endurance - International horse news; equestrian event news, equine news - Horsetalk

Horsetalk.co.nz


Shane Dougan was the toast of the New Zealand team and his horse the centre of overseas attention after the combination finished eighth in the endurance at the World Equestrian Games in Aachen, Germany today.

Eketahuna's Dougan and his 10-year-old Arabian stallion Vigar Riffal produced New Zealand's best ever endurance result at a World Games on the way to overtaking a dozen other combinations in an extra quick final loop of the 160km journey.

Dougan averaged 41kph in the final of the six loops after finishing the first in 70th place of the 160 starters.

"He could have gone quicker," an ecstatic Dougan said afterwards. "There was plenty left in the tank, he's a great little horse. It was very slippery out there but it has been a real thrill to be at the World Games and something I will remember all my life."

Marlborough's Kylie Avery, the team's youngest member at 20 and her nine-year-old part-Arabian stallion Silands Jasark also performed with distinction to be the only other combination to finish for New Zealand in 22nd place.

The New Zealand team of five - one individual combination and four members riding as a team - were part of a high attrition rate in today's competition where the test of fitness and stamina for both horse and rider also had to endure torrential rain in the last two laps which made the going treacherous.

New Zealand received an early set-back when the experienced Brian Tiffan and Sonny failed the first vet check with the horse pulling up lame. It was a disappointing final outing for the combination as the 13-year-old homebred Anglo-Arab gelding is to be sold to overseas interests.

With pressure on the remaining three team riders having to complete the course to be in with a chance of a medal, the New Zealanders made significant strides in the second lap. Australian-based Howard Harris and Harmere Turfan worked their way into second place and the Kiwis into third overall.

Although Harris slipped back over the ensuing two laps, Avery and Dougan were making inroads and kept the trio in the hunt for a team bronze right up until the penultimate loop.

Harmere Turfan lost his footing in the conditions causing lameness which resulted in the pair being vetted out, leaving the remaining two-horse team of Dougan and Avery out of the medal count.

The individual combination of Philip Graham and Wolfgang Amadeus also faced bad luck on the fifth loop when the 11-year-old Anglo Arab gelding also suffered a leg injury and was ruled ineligible to carry on.

"It was great to be a part of this team and just a shame it didn't work out how we thought it was going too," Dougan said. "But that's the way it goes. It was a pretty hard track with a lot of rock and hard surface."

Dougan, who nearly pulled out of the trip because of financial constraints, is now in the happy position of weighing up a variety of tidy offers he has had for Vigar Riffal.

WEC: Ubach is the champion

By M. Satya Narayan, Staff Reporter
Aachen: Spaniard Miguel Villa Ubach came from nowhere to bag the gold in the endurance championship at the World Equestrian Games yesterday.

The 13-km final stage came to a dramatic end after leader Shaikh Rashid Bin Mohammad Al Maktoum's chances of the gold ended on the slippery track amid pouring rain. Sultan Bin Sulayem, riding Galagolan du Desert, produced a sterling show to finish eighth after being placed 22nd at one point during the ride.

With the visibility almost nil, the final loop of the 160-km race crippled all top six riders, which included Shaikh Rashid, Portugal's Raposa, Spain's Jaume Punti Dachs, Belgian Valerie Ceunick and Bahrain's Shaikh Duaij Bin Salman Al Khalifa, none of them figuring in the top three.

The 32-year-old Ubach, 1999 European Open champion riding eight-year-old grey gelding Hungares, was eighth midway through the stage. He, however, came up with a searing finish to win the gold, while the French duo of Virginie Atger and Elodie Le Labourier took the silver and bronze.

The battle for the team honours was still on at the time of going to the press.

Earlier in the morning, the five-member UAE team lined up with 152 other riders from 41 countries to underline their domination in the sport.

His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, Shaikh Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and Minister of Finance and Industry, followed the progress of the UAE riders. But even before the end of the first two stages, the UAE suffered major setbacks.

The rain-affected terrain took its toll and Shaikh Hamdan Bin Mohammad Al Maktoum's 10-year-old Bay Arabian gelding Nashmi (lame) and Shaikh Mayed Bin Mohammad Al Maktoum's 11-year-old Hera de la Crouz (metabolic) made an early exit.



With the double-exit, the UAE's chances of a team gold vanished, but Shaikh Rashid Bin Mohammad Al Maktoum, 2002 World champion Shaikh Ahmad Bin Mohammad Al Maktoum and Sultan Bin Sulayem were still in the fray.

However, Shaikh Ahmad, riding Jazyk, and Shaikh Rashid on Keroual du Breuil brought UAE to the front when they finished ahead of the pack after the fourth loop.

However, an overzealous official shouted and upset Shaikh Rashid's horse and UAE ace lost about three to four crucial moments. That left Shaikh Ahmad as the leader and Shaikh Rashid in third place with Portugal's Jaoa Raposo in between.

Shaikh Rashid made up in the fifth leg to finish first but the UAE suffered another setback when Shaikh Ahmad's horse went lame just before going out on the final loop.

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Monday, August 21, 2006

2006 WEC-YH: Festival Mondail d'Endurance!

Compiegne France was the venue for the 2000 WEC - The grounds of the Norther Villa used by Napoleon and the home of Joan d'Arc - and this week - the center of the endurance universe:) There will be lots of rides going on around the world (Old Salam here in Idaho); but in your spare time - check out the images of endurance coming from the three days of races, rides, shows, and auctions:

<http://www.tourisme.fr/tourist-office/compiegne.htm>Compiegne France:
<http://www.open-60.com/index.php?lang=uk&rub=5>Calendar of Events:

August 23: Inter-Regional Rides Young Horses 4-5-6 yrs
August 24: Breeding Show for Mares and Foals
August 24: Horses for Sale Presentation
August 25: CEI*** Sponsors Trophy
August 26: Sponsors Trophy Best Condition and Prize Giving
August 26: Breeding Show
August 27: CEI*** FEI WEC for Young Horses

Coming this Wed: http://www.endurance.net/2006wec_yh/

2006 WEC Official Results Posted

The Aachen Organizing Committee has posted the official results for the 2006 World Endurance Championship. No Surprises -- Just LOTS of detail to show how the best in the world played out their strategies today!

There were 159 Starters. There were 94 Eliminations. There were 65 WINNERS and there was 1 Champion Horse and Rider from Spain -- and 1 Champion Team from France!!

our congratulations to everyone that was involved in this event!

The Endurance.Net team!!

WEC: Team Medals

Annonced w/o details by the OC. Congratulations to all competitors on a real test!

Team Results (firth 3 teams)
1. France – total riding time 28:11:27
2. Switzerland – 29:57:20
3. Portugal – 30:38:32

WEC: first 8 finishers

The Top 8 Finishers at this years WEC

1 - 17.38 km/hr Spain - Miguel Vila Ubach on Hungares
2 - 17.26 km/hr France - Virginie Atger on Kangoo d'Aurabelle
3 - 17.26 km/hr France - Elodie Le Labourier on Sangho'Limousian
4 - 17.08 km/hr Spain - Jaume Punti Dachs on Elvis HB
5 - 17.26 km/hr France - Philippe Benoit on Akim du Boulve
6 - 17.01 km/hr Portugal - Joao Raposo on Sultai
7 - 16.82 km/hr New Zealand Shane - Gray Dougan on Vigar Riffal
8 - 16.82 km/hr UAE - Sultan Ahmad Sultan bin Sulayem on Galagolan du Desert

2006 WEC Gold/Silver/Bronze


Individual Medal Winners






SpainGoldMiguuel Vila Uback
and Hungares (Spain)
FranceSilverVirginie Atger
and Kangoo d'Aurabelle (France)
FranceBronzeElodi Le Labourier
and Sangho'Limousian (France)


WEC: Gold at Aachen

the 2006 World Endurance Individual Champions:

Gold: Miguuel Vila Uback and Hungares (Spain)
Silver: Verginie Atger and Kangoo d'Aurabelle (France)
Bronze: Elodi Le Labourier and Sangho'Limousian (France)

Sunday, August 20, 2006

WEC: 2006 World Equestrian Games Opening Ceremonies

By Nancy Jaffer
equisearch.com

achen, Germany, August 20, 2006 -- Horsepower in all its glory was on parade as the World Equestrian Games officially opened this afternoon, celebrating the beauty, grace and diversity of the animals we so admire -- as well as the people who ride and drive them.

There were 37,500 enthusiastic fans packing the stands, clapping in time to the music and doing the wave, so happy (like me) to be at the world's biggest horse show.

The WEG's breadth was epitomized by the moment when reining horses were spinning, a vaulter was leaping off the back of her mount, four-in-hand drivers toured the ring, show jumper Christian Ahlmann cleared a fence, endurance riders trotted around, world champion dressage rider Nadine Capellmann put her horse through its paces and eventers tore around the turf. Now I've mentioned all of the seven disciplines that will be showcased here for the next two weeks, and if today's kick-off was any indication, it will be a time of excitement and drama that goes by far too fast.

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WEC: Endurance race set for off

Gulf Daily News
BAHRAIN's national endurance team is set to compete with world class riders in the 160-km race of the World Equestrian Games today at 7am (Bahrain time) in Aachen, Germany.

The one-day race will be held through the city and the District of Aachen, The Netherlands and Belgium, with 162 riders representing 42 countries in the fray.

Captained by Bahrain Royal Equestrian and Endurance Federation (Breef) president Shaikh Nasser bin Hamad Al Khalifa, the five-member team had their last training session yesterday under rainy conditions.

The remaining Bahraini team members are Breef first vice-president Shaikh Khalid bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Shaikh Salman bin Saqer Al Khalifa, Yousef Taher, Hamad Al Muraisi and Khalid Al Ruwaihi who each completed three 160-km races to qualify for this prestigious event.

[More ...]

Endurance.Net Event Coverage

WEC: Tough conditions to test favourites UAE

By M. Satya Narayan Staff Reporter
Gulf News

Aachen: The UAE team will have to cope with difficult underfoot conditions when they compete in today's endurance ride on the opening day of the World Endurance Games (WEG).

The 160-km ride, sponsored by the Dubai Equestrian Club, will run through some treacherous forest terrain in Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium that will severely test the riders.

A strong field of over 150 riders from 40 countries will be seen in action in the event, which gets off to a 6am start.

[More ...]

Endurance.Net Event Coverage

Canada: Local flavour at World Equestrian Games



Written by Jackie Shows

It's the largest equine competition in the world -- and Ruth Sturley of Owen Sound will be there, representing Canada.

The World Equestrian Games 2006 kick off August 20th in Aachen, Germany.

The event is held every 4 years and draws an international crowd of 500-thousand people.

It's a 5-star event including the 7 diciplines of -- show jumping, eventing, carriage driving, dressage, endurance, vaulting and reining.

Sturley will be participating in the disipline of endurance.

And there is something very unique about her case.

Sturley has been told she is the most senior member on the Canadian team -- at 60 years old.

The well-known Ian Miller is next in line.

This is Sturley's first time competing at the World level and she says she's been leading up to this event for the past two years -- and doing intense training for about 6 months.

Sturley says she is both nervous and excited -- but knows she must stay focused.

She has been working with her horse for the past 6 years -- and says the endurance competition seems to be a perfect fit.

Endurance racing takes place over 160 kilometres of dirt terrain -- Sturley says both the speed and stamina of the horse is tested.

During the ride -- the horses are stopped at intervals and must pass a veterinarian inspection in order to continue.

She says Canadians are held in good regard on the international scene in endurance.

The games wrap up September 4th -- and there are over 800 horse/rider combinations participating from around the world.
[Website...]

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Bahrain: Riders ready for endurance challenge

Riders ready for endurance challenge

BAHRAIN's national endurance team continued their preparations for the World Equestrian Games scheduled for Monday in Aachen, Germany.

The Bahraini team, which is presently training at the race venue, comprise six riders, including captain and Bahrain Royal Equestrian and Endurance Federation (Breef) president Shaikh Nasser bin Hamad Al Khalifa.

The remaining team members are Breef first vice-president Shaikh Khalid bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Shaikh Salman bin Saqer Al Khalifa, Yousef Taher, Hamad Al Muraisi and Khalid Al Ruwaihi, who each completed three 120-km races to qualify for this prestigious event.

[More ...]

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Malaysia: Proposal for equestrian centre in every State


6 Aug 2006
S. Selvam

IN a move to erase any perception that equestrian is a sport for the rich, the Equestrian Association of Malaysia (EAM) has proposed to the Education Ministry and Sports Ministry to identify one boarding school in every State as a training centre.


Its president, Datuk Dr Jamaluddin Jarjis, who is the Science, Technology and Innovation Minister, emphasised that equestrian is a sport that Malaysians can excel in, especially endurance riding.

"We have the potential to excel in equine sports, especially endurance riding," said Jamaluddin at the flag and national jersey hand-over ceremony to the endurance team competing in the World Equestrian Games which begins in Aachen, Germany on Sunday.

"Datuk Awang (Kamaruddin) was the No 1 ranked endurance rider in 2001. As such, we have done it (excelled in the sport) and we can do it again."

The endurance riding competition will be held the following day and the Games ends on Sept 3.

Sports Minister Datuk Azalina Othman Said handed the flag to team manager Datuk Balakrishna Polanaidoo.

Sultan of Terengganu Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin, an avid rider himself, witnessed the ceremony.

Malaysia will be represented by Corporal Zulkelfi Saari, Mohd Izry Razali, Shamsudin Abdul Roni and Norlaily Buniyamin.

With the exception of Shamsudin, all the riders are from the Royal Terengganu Endurance Stable based in Terengganu.

"We are aware of the perception that the sport caters only to the rich. But we also firmly believe that no sport should be the exclusive right of any group of people," added Jamaluddin.

"What we have, at the moment, are individuals and families who have been very supportive of the sport.

"But we need to take it to the grassroots, and we have submitted a proposal to the Education Ministry and Sports Ministry to have at least one boarding school in each State to have a training centre."

The distance and categories for endurance riding range from 80, 100, 120 and 160 kilometres with the last being categorised as a three-star event. The race is completed within a day.

Kiwis Head to Aachen



by Virginia Caro, A Special WEG 2006 Preview provided by PhelpsSports.com
New Zealand ? August 3, 2006 ? The New Zealand team for WEG comprises six eventers, five endurance horses, one show jumper, and a vaulter. The cost of sending horses to Europe from New Zealand is so prohibitive that riders are not selected unless they are deemed competitive. As a result, a number of riders base themselves overseas to gain experience and measure themselves against international competition.

Endurance:

Having won team gold in Dubai in 1998 when the horses? costs were met by the organizers, endurance has been fired with determination to compete internationally ever since, and not just across the Tasman in Australia, where the Tom Quilty Ride is the gold standard.

Paulette Stannard battled to fund her horse, Zephyr, to The Hague in 1994, to compete as an individual, the first New Zealand-based Kiwi to have competed outside of Australasia. She entered the stadium in bronze medal position, but was vetted out, having twice been sent the wrong way, and covering extra distance as a result.

Zephyr was fine next morning, and bought by an American family who invited Paulette to go with the horse and settle him in. Following her showing at The Hague, Paulette was sure it was worth having a WEG team in the future, convinced the horses were up to it.

The other Kiwi competitor at WEG that year was Australian based Howard Harris, who is a member of this year?s team. At 60 years old, he is vastly experienced, having competed internationally since 1988. His horse, Harmere Turfan, a 12-year-old old home-bred Arabian gelding, placed second in the Tom Quilty Ride earlier this year. Howard and his horse traveled to Christchurch in the South Island to meet up with the rest of the team before flying out to Germany on July 24.

Brian Tiffen, a 47-year-old farmer from Fairlie in the South Island, who was the best performing Kiwi in the extremely wet weather at Jerez four years ago, will be hoping for better conditions at Aachen this year. Tiffen, who started endurance riding as a teenager, was a member of the NZ team at the endurance world championships in Dubai last year on his team horse Sonny, a 13-year-old home-bred Anglo-Arab.

Shane Dougan, a 55-year-old farmer from Eketahuna in the North Island, played polo-crosse prior to taking up endurance. He holds the NZ record over 160 kilometres, riding his 10-year-old Arabian stallion Vigar Riffal, on which he was a member of the winning Trans-Tasman team in Australia last year.

Philip Graham, a 51-year-old farmer from Cheviot in the South Island, was also a member of the same Trans-Tasman. His 11-year-old Anglo-Arab gelding, Wolfgang Amadeus, is a consistent performer, bred by the late Leo Nisbett.

The rookie in the team is 20-year-old Kylie Avery, from Marlborough, who has been competing in open company for three years. She was a member of the 2004 NZ Trans-Tasman team, and was runner-up for the 2006 Horse and Rider of the Year. Her horse, Silands Jasark, a nine-year-old part-Arab stallion, was also bred by Leo Nisbett.

Eventing:

The eventing team is a mixture of youth and experience, as the sport rebuilds after the ?dream team? years. They have the benefit of being managed by former World and Olympic Champion Blyth Tait, who is passionate about the development of the sport at home after decades of competing at the highest level in the UK and Europe.

Veteran Andrew Nicholson, based in Britain since the age of 18, now 44 years old and holding the record for the most Badminton completions, anchors the team with the choice of two horses, Lord Killinghurst and Henry Tankerville. The former, a 15-year-old bay gelding, is first choice for the World and Olympic team medalist, having placed third at Burghley for the last three years, fourth at Badminton last year and second in 2004.

Heelan Tompkins was the best placed New Zealander at Athens with the oldest horse, Glengarrick, and they look like creating another record at Aachen with the evergreen, black thoroughbred gelding now 19 years old. He has run sparingly, but won the Puhinui three-day event in December 2005 to prove he is still on top of his game. He was flown to the UK in time for team training in July.

The 35-year-old Joe Meyer was the best-placed Kiwi at Badminton this year, finishing 10th on his home-bred Snip, and has earned his debut for New Zealand after basing himself in the UK for some years now.

Caroline Powell (33), married and living in Scotland for fourteen years now, also makes her debut for New Zealand with the 13-year-old grey gelding Lenamore, having had good showings at Badminton and Burghley, where they were fifth last year.

Alex De Luca Oliveira, an ex-pat Brazilian now based in New Zealand, was short-listed with Clifton Checkers after producing the best Kiwi performance at the Adelaide CCI**** Trans-Tasman test last year. They went to England earlier this year to gain experience on the competitive European circuit. Alex is thrilled to be representing his newly adopted country.

Following injury to Dan Jocelyn?s Silence, 26-year-old reserve Donna Smith, based in the United States with Karen and David O?Connor for the last five years, has come into the team with Call Me Clifton. They completed Kentucky CCI**** earlier this year to put themselves in contention. Both Call Me Clifton and Clifton Checkers are New Zealand bred and owned by Frances Stead.

Show Jumping:

Thirty-two-year-old Belgium-based Grant Wilson will be the only NZ show jumper in Aachen. A reserve rider for Athens 2004, and a member of the NZ Nations? Cup teams last year, he has two horses qualified for WEG 2006, Up & Down, his first choice, and Utopia van de Donkhoeve. He will have former U.S. Olympic medalist, now NZ national coach, Greg Best helping him.

Vaulting:

In 1994 an exchange student from Paraparaumu was based in Germany for six months with a host family who got him involved in vaulting, although he had never ridden a horse before. He was coached by the then world champion, Christoph Lensing, and got a wild card entry into WEG in The Hague.

When 16-year-old David McIntyre returned to New Zealand he started a vaulting club, and Christoph came to New Zealand to coach them. David?s mother has kept the Kapiti Vaulting Club going, with German enthusiasts coming out to coach for six months at a time. The club gave a popular demonstration at the Horse of the Year Show this year.

Another wild card entry has been obtained for 23-year-old Hannah Mills, of Paekakariki, who has been vaulting with the club since she was 14. Hannah, who is also a surf-lifesaver and a BSc graduate, went overseas last year to stay with one of the German girls who had coached at Kapiti. This resulted in the opportunity to compete in Aachen, so Hannah has returned for six weeks to receive coaching in preparation for the WEG.


This special report is a preview provided by PhelpsSports.com. Look for the debut of this new equestrian news website during the World Equestrian Games in August. Visit http://www.PhelpsSports.com for more information.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Bahrain - Endurance riders on course




BAHRAIN's national endurance team continued their preparations for the World Equestrian Games scheduled for August 23 in Aachen, Germany.

The seven-member team will be captained by Bahrain Royal Equestrian and Endurance Federation (Breef) president Shaikh Nasser bin Hamad Al Khalifa who is keen to compete with top class riders from across the world.

The remaining team riders are Breef first vice-president Shaikh Khalid bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Shaikh Daij bin Salman Al Khalifa, Shaikh Salman bin Saqer Al Khalifa, Yousef Taher, Hamad Al Muraisi and Khalid Al Ruwaihi, who qualified for this event after each completed three 160-km races.

"We have prepared well for this prestigious race by taking part in a number of international races in the UK and France," said Shaikh Daij.

Shaikh Daij said the team members have gained in experience and confidence, and are looking forward to give a strong performance at the games.

"The team will try to achieve good results as they are participating for the second time in a world class event after the first one held in January in Dubai," he said.

"The riders showed high spirits during training and we are very grateful to His Majesty King Hamad, who always supports the sport of endurance riding, and Shaikh Nasser for backing us while we train for this race," added Shaikh Daij.

Four M'sian Riders To Compete In World Equestrian Games



August 15, 2006 17:33 PM

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 15 (Bernama) -- Four Malaysian riders will showcase their horse riding skills and endurance level at the Federation Equestrian International (FEI) World Equestrian Games in Aachen, Germany from Aug 20 to Sept 3.

The team, made up of three men and a woman -- all from Terengganu -- will be headed by team manager Dr Balakrishna Polanaidoo and will comprise of Cpl Zulkefli Saari, Mohd Izry Razali and Shamsuddin Abdul Roni with Norlaily Buniyamin, a member of the Doha Asian Games team, the sole woman rider.

Coached by Paul James Brown, the Malaysian riders are down to compete in the 160km Endurance competition that runs across three countries (Germany, Belgium and Holland).

Balakrishna said the route identified for this edition of the Games, held every four years, just like football or hockey World Cups, has been regarded the most difficult by FEI.

"There are many small hills along the route and the current wet season and prevailing chilly weather conditions (12 degrees celcius) there will make it all the more difficult.

"However, our riders have been training very hard for the competition and have pledged to give their best," said Dr Balakrishna after receiving helmets for the team, sponsored by Italian company, Las Helmet here, Tuesday.

He added that Zulkefli, Izry and Norlaily are from the Royal Terengganu Endurance Stable while Shamsudin comes from Ar Raudah club.

Malaysia are competing in the Games for the second time after making their first appearence at the 2002 World Equestrian Games in Jerez, Spain.

About 150 riders from 40 nations are expected to compete in the Games which also host events like showjumping, dressage, eventing, vaulting, four-in-hand driving and reining.

Meanwhile, Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Azalina Othman Said thanked Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin of Terengganu, for promoting the sport of equestrian and playing an integral role in the team's participation at the World Equestrian Games.

Sultan Mizan who is an accomplished rider, participating in major equestrian events all over the world, was instrumental in sending the team to Germany.

-- BERNAMA

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Equestrian/World Endurance Championship: Sultan urges Terengganu to ride into new horizon



10 Aug 2006


SULTAN of Terengganu Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin wants the State to be equated with endurance horse riding, just like how Malaysia is associated with badminton.

"It is not impossible as Datuk Awang Kamaruddin carved his name when he achieved World No 1 status for endurance riders in 2001," said Sultan Mizan.

The Sultan was speaking to reporters before taking a ride on one of the tracks prepared for the Federation Equestrian International (FEI) 2008 World Endurance Championship.

The two-day championship, held once every four years, is slated for Aug 1-2, 2008 at the Terengganu International Endurance Park in Lembah Bidong.

About 200 riders and 700 volunteers are expected to be involved in the championship.

The Sultan also dismissed claims that the sport was targeted to an elite group and cited Awang as an example.

Awang started off as a stable-boy before becoming a professional horse-rider.

"Horse-riding is a bit like golf in the sense that most of the professionals were caddies.

"Once they succeeded, they received sponsorship from companies and individuals," he said.

The Sultan admitted however that owning and maintaining a horse was costly, but it should not discourage anyone from taking up the sport.

"We have a few equestrian clubs here and all the people need to do is to become a member."

Friday, August 11, 2006

ENGLAND HONOURS FOR ENDURANCE RIDER



RIDING
An Island rider and her ten-year-old thoroughbred mare are off to Scotland this weekend to represent England in an endurance riding event.
Karen Whittington, 50, of Chale, and her horse Malthouse Maiden Ray ? stable name Mary ? will be taking part in the Home International and Celtic Challenge near Kelso.
The competition is being held as part of the 2006 Scottish Championship.
The duo have enjoyed a highly successful year so far, gaining grade one and grade two awards at a two-day endurance event in North Norfolk last month, and came second when representing the South East in an inter-region 50km race in Ludlow.
Now, she and Mary will pit their wits against talented riders and horses from across the home nations in a two-day, 80km event.
She said: "I had put my name down a couple of times in the hope I would be selected and now I have been picked, I am really happy and excited about taking part.
"To be chosen to ride in Scotland when we are from the Island is for me a great achievement, especially considering Mary is a thoroughbred and not the preferred choice as an endurance horse.
"It has been an amazing year for us and this has topped it off brilliantly."
11 August 2006

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Bahrain Riders gear up for world challenge




he Bahrain Royal endurance team is stepping up preparations to participate in the World Endurance Horse-Riding Championship which will be held later this month in Germany. Bahrain Royal Endurance and Equestrian Federation (Breef) president and team leader Shaikh Nasser bin Hamad Al Khalifa assured that the members are gearing up for the most important tournament in the sport's calendar.

Shaikh Nasser said that the national team participated in four events and achieved excellent results, and the team is now set for the world championship which will be over 160km.

The Breef president said that the team will try to achieve good results as they participate for the second time in the world class event, after the first one which was held last January in Dubai.

The names of the squad was also announced and they included Shaikh Khalid bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Shaikh Daij bin Salman Al Khalifa, Shaikh Salman bin Sager Al Khalifa, Yousif Taher, Hamad Al Meraisi and Khalid Al Ruwaie.

Shaikh Nasser also appreciated the support of His Majesty King Hamad for the sport.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Many wins for keen endurance rider

GIDDY-UP: Corey Lunt and his Arabian gelding Assiff during an endurance race last weekend. Photo courtesy of Chris Ros
Thursday, 3 August 2006

THIRTEEN-year-old Corey Lunt and his 11 year old Arabian gelding, Assiff were proving to be a winning partnership on the endurance scene after notching up another first place at the Annual Wickepin Endurance ride last weekend.

The event consisted of three components, a 20 km and 40 km non-competitive training ride and an 80 km competitive ride.

Organisers Phillip Martin and Vanessa Crispe of Trehaven Merinos marked a course that traversed gravel roads and farming properties softened by rain the day prior to the event.

Unfortunately numbers were down this year, which was disappointing. This however, did not detract from the event, which will be well remembered for the wonderful hospitality that the members of the Ten Mile Tennis Club provided.

Fourteen horse and rider combinations took part in the 40 km ride and nine riders commenced the 20 km ride with Tim Wiesse of Narrogin and Lisa, Caleb and Danelle Murray of Tincurrin successfully completing.

Twentynine riders began the 80 km event with Corey not only coming first in the junior section and receiving the best conditioned junior horse but also recording the fastest overall time on the day, completing the course in five hours and 23 minutes.

WFI, Narrogin Sports Arena and Kel's Tyres of Narrogin sponsored the junior trophies.

Corey and Assiff began their endurance career together 12 months ago and to date have completed nine out of 11 rides, been awarded six first junior placings, one second placing, six best conditioned junior horse awards, and totalled over 800 successful kilometres.

Their biggest achievement together this year has been to successfully complete a 100 mile (160 kms) ride, the first for both horse and rider.

These 100 mile rides are particularly taxing as the riders commence at midnight by torchlight. They continue riding during the next day, taking only four breaks, no longer than one hour throughout the ride.

The horses must pass strict veterinary controls between legs in order to continue.

Corey and Assiff completed this course in a total riding time of 19 hours and 44 minutes being one of only six out of 14 starters to complete the ride.

They went on to win the junior section and best conditioned junior horse.

Completing this event qualified them for the Tom Quilty Gold Cup National event, which will be held in WA next year.

With over half the 2006 endurance season completed, Corey and Assiff are aiming to continue their winning form in the second half of the season and to complete the State Championship 100 mile event in September.

Kiwi contingent eyes World Games success



August 4
The New Zealand team for WEG comprises six eventers, five endurance horses, one show jumper, and a vaulter. The cost of sending horses to Europe from New Zealand is so prohibitive that riders are not selected unless they are deemed competitive. As a result, a number of riders base themselves overseas to gain experience and measure themselves against international competition.

Endurance:

Having won team gold in Dubai in 1998 when the horses' costs were met by the organizers, endurance has been fired with determination to compete internationally ever since, and not just across the Tasman in Australia, where the Tom Quilty Ride is the gold standard.

Paulette Stannard battled to fund her horse, Zephyr, to The Hague in 1994, to compete as an individual, the first New Zealand-based Kiwi to have competed outside of Australasia. She entered the stadium in bronze medal position, but was vetted out, having twice been sent the wrong way, and covering extra distance as a result.

Zephyr was fine next morning, and bought by an American family who invited Paulette to go with the horse and settle him in. Following her showing at The Hague, Paulette was sure it was worth having a WEG team in the future, convinced the horses were up to it.

The other Kiwi competitor at WEG that year was Australian based Howard Harris, who is a member of this year's team. At 60 years old, he is vastly experienced, having competed internationally since 1988. His horse, Harmere Turfan, a 12-year-old old home-bred Arabian gelding, placed second in the Tom Quilty Ride earlier this year. Howard and his horse traveled to Christchurch in the South Island to meet up with the rest of the team before flying out to Germany on July 24.

Brian Tiffen, a 47-year-old farmer from Fairlie in the South Island, who was the best performing Kiwi in the extremely wet weather at Jerez four years ago, will be hoping for better conditions at Aachen this year. Tiffen, who started endurance riding as a teenager, was a member of the NZ team at the endurance world championships in Dubai last year on his team horse Sonny, a 13-year-old home-bred Anglo-Arab.

Shane Dougan, a 55-year-old farmer from Eketahuna in the North Island, played polo-crosse prior to taking up endurance. He holds the NZ record over 160 kilometres, riding his 10-year-old Arabian stallion Vigar Riffal, on which he was a member of the winning Trans-Tasman team in Australia last year.

Philip Graham, a 51-year-old farmer from Cheviot in the South Island, was also a member of the same Trans-Tasman. His 11-year-old Anglo-Arab gelding, Wolfgang Amadeus, is a consistent performer, bred by the late Leo Nisbett.

The rookie in the team is 20-year-old Kylie Avery, from Marlborough, who has been competing in open company for three years. She was a member of the 2004 NZ Trans-Tasman team, and was runner-up for the 2006 Horse and Rider of the Year. Her horse, Silands Jasark, a nine-year-old part-Arab stallion, was also bred by Leo Nisbett.
[More ...]

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Tevis: Barbara White goes for # 26!

After 27 100-mile rides, Scotts Valley woman on her way to becoming Tevis Cup nobility -
By JULIE JAG - Sentinel Staff Writer - August 3, 2006

According to legend, White spent years helping her mother complete several editions of the Tevis Cup ? a 100-mile trek considered the granddaddy of endurance horse racing. Yet White didn't show any interest in riding in the race herself until 1967, when she heard a rumor that Baroness Margit Bessenyey, the granddaughter of Copper King Marcus Daly, would be among the entrants. As the story goes, White, then 19, was wooed by the chance to ride with nobility and signed up.

In the Tevis' 52-year history, only five riders have surpassed the 20 completion mark. Behind White and Hall is Julie Suhr of Scotts Valley ? White's mother and an endurance riding legend in her own right ? with 22.

[More ...]

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Uncommon poise in the saddle



Months after graduating high school, Duncan looks to shine on at Tevis Cup

By: Todd Mordhorst, Journal Sports Editor
Tuesday, August 1, 2006 8:35 AM PDT

photo: Akim AGinsky/Auburn Journal Tosha Duncan will again be atop Rambo, a full-bred Arabian, at Saturday's Tevis Cup. A Bear River High grad who will study journalism this fall at the University of Nevada, the 18-year-old rode the horse to victory at a race outside Nevada City earlier this year.

Chris Martin's full-bred Arabian horse hasn't been on the race track in more than eight years. But at the conclusion of the Wild West Ride in May, the horse must have felt like he was on the oval again.

Tosha Duncan was in the saddle, making sure Rambo didn't burn out too early. She paced the horse to victory in the three-day, 150-mile ride at Skillman Flat, outside of Nevada City. The finish also gave the 18-year-old Duncan a ticket to Saturday's Tevis Cup endurance ride. She needed 300 miles in competition to qualify for the 100-mile ride from Truckee to Auburn.

"I made the promise to her that if she wanted to get the mileage, put in the effort, that she could ride Tevis and that's where we're at," said Martin, who owns a ranch in Penn Valley.

Tevis Cup is the centerpiece of a hectic summer for Duncan, who graduated from Bear River High in June. She's preparing to head off to the University of Nevada in the fall, where she plans to study journalism.

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