Thursday, May 28, 2009
Australia: Endurance ride a 160km test
Photo: Craig Warhurst
Matthew Lee | 27th May 2009
THE trails snaking their way through the scenic Imbil Forestry will barely have settled down from the Rally Queensland event earlier this month when the Australian Endurance Championship is held in Imbil over the Queen's Birthday long weekend next month.
The event, officially recognised internationally by the World Equestrian Body FEI, will see riders and their horses from regions across Australia gather in Imbil for a weekend of endurance horse riding.
And while the speeds will be far more leisurely than the rally cars tearing up the dirt in the Rally Queensland event, spectators who turn out to witness the event can be certain to see some brilliant competition and rivalries.
Three rides will take place over the course of the weekend, the feature event being a testing 160 kilometre ride - known as the Brookleigh Stud 160km FEI Australian Championship event.
This major endurance race is being organised by the Far A Way Riders Club.
The club is credited as being one of the most active organisers of endurance rides across Australia.
Meanwhile, some of Australia's most decorated endurance riders will be competing in the Imbil event, all with the hope of qualifying for selection in the Australian team to compete next year in the World Endurance Championship in Kentucky, USA.
Prominent Queensland competitors aiming for a shot at Australian selection include brothers Brook and Matthew Sample, Penny Toft and Derek Armitage.
All riders represented Australia last year at the World Championships in Malaysia, adding depth to the starting line-up.
Gympie regional horse enthusiasts are encouraged to attend the event as spectators to witness the event.
Posted by Merri at 1:02 PM