Photo: Erika Lindsay receives her Sportsperson of the Month Award for January from Leanne Mikoda of the Central West Credit Union.
Hours of riding in the saddle has finally paid off for endurance rider Erika Lindsay after being named Sportsperson of the Month for January.
Lindsay received the accolade on the back of being named both New South Wales and National Junior Rider of the Year for the Australian Endurance Riders Association.
The 15-year-old took out the award with a total of 123.5 points from the 2006 season - only 3.5 points ahead of her nearest rival and friend Allix Jones.
Jones did manage to pip Lindsay in the National Junior Distance Rider covering 2000 kilometres during the season compared to Lindsay's 1835 kilometres.
Lindsay and her horse, Kintimani Silver Motif, took out the One Horse One Rider combination covering 1270 kilometres together and collecting 86 points on the way.
She has finally reaped the rewards from the sport for all her effort being the sole trainer and rider of the horse.
While performing fantastically in the overall 2006 season, Lindsay's goal was to compete in the Tom Quilty Gold Cup National Championships in Queensland. It is considered the ultimate ride on the Australian calendar involving 100 miles in one day.
The ride was conducted in very wet and slippery conditions meaning it was a long slow haul for Erika and Kintimani Silver Motif but they eventually completed the gruelling race in seventh place in the junior section.
Lindsay also completed the ride with Cowra's Mary Symons.
Lindsay continued her string of gruelling rides in 2006 when she competed in the 400 kilometres Shahzda Memorial Marathon Ride where 80 kilometres is completed every day for five days.
She rode with father Alan and Kintimani Charisma to place as the second junior overall.
Lindsay's excellent results over the past year have been the culmination of five years of hard work as she started riding as a 10-year-old.
She completed training rides on homebred Kintimani Fosta (now retired) before joining the Cowra Pony Club and learning all the disciplines associated with various horse sports.
She only came back to endurance riding when another homebred horse Kintimani Silver Motif came of age to compete.
Turning 16 in November, Lindsay has been forced to leave the junior ranks and compete in the lightweight section amongst adults in 2007.
She has already gained a 4th and a 3rd place at Oberon and Bungendore respectively handling the step up in class admirably.
Lindsay would like to thank both her reliable farrier Gary Bryant and Rob Watt who has been so helpful with blood results and management to keep her on the road.