Friday, December 18, 2009

Mongol Derby 2010

December 18 2009

The world’s longest, toughest horse race, The Mongol Derby, returns for a second year

After the triumphant inaugural edition of the 2009 Mongol Derby, the epic 1000km multi-horse race across Mongolia returns for a second time in August 2010. With 35 places available and a more gruelling course being planned, this second Derby is set to be even tougher than last year.

The 2010 Derby will start on August 7 and officially end on August 18, giving riders 12 days to complete the 1000km course. Last year’s winners, Charles van Wyck (South Africa) and Shiravsamboo Galbadrakh (Mongolia) completed the course in eight days.

The 1000 km race is based on the postal system of Chinggis Khan, which could relay messages thousands of miles in a matter of days. Like the ancient postal system the Mongol Derby relies on a network of horse stations. These are being built at 40km or under intervals stretching along the course. With the rider’s changing steed at each horse station, the Derby is not a test of the horses’ speed, but of the rider’s skill and endurance.

The Mongol Derby is one of the most ambitious equestrian events on the planet with over 1000 Mongolian horses selected and trained for the event. Animal welfare is once again the top priority of the organisers. All the horses will be subject to a series of rigorous veterinary checks before, during and after the race. In 2009 less than 2% of the horses required any first aid and they were all minor.

The 35 selected riders will attend a three day pre-race training session in the Mongolian steppe before taking on the 1000km course. The session will be taken by Maggie Pattinson, Chef d'Equipe of the British Home International Endurance Team since 2007 and endurance expert extraordinnaire. The session will also include medical training from Prometheus Medical.

As with all The Adventurists’ events, the Mongol Derby is not only about having an amazing adventure, it's also about raising lots of cash for charity. Each rider will raise a minimum of £1000 so the second Derby is set to raise at least £35,000 for the official charity. The 2009 Mongol Derby raised a fantastic £71,000; £41,000 of this for Mercy Corps and a further £30,000 for the riders’ chosen charities.

For more information on the Derby and how to apply for one of the coveted 35 places please visit Applications will be open until January 22 2010.

- Ends –

For more information, hi-res photos, or to arrange interviews with the founder of the Mongol Derby and The Adventurists Tom Morgan, please contact:

Dan Wedgwood / Antonia Bolingbroke-Kent
The Adventurists Press Office
+44(0)7966 911 917
+44(0)117 329 0884

Official website of the Adventurists Mongol Derby:

Notes to Editors:

About The Mongol Derby
Hosted in a country where the horse is part of the fabric of the nation, the inaugural Derby will take endurance horse racing to a new level. The innovative model of staging posts to ensure the horses only travel distances of 40km each will allow riders to race across a course with a gargantuan scale that hasn’t been seen for decades.

The welfare of the horses will be paramount to the race organisers and riders. Semi-wild and smaller than the racing horses the public are used to on television; they will be looked after every step of the way, from months before the race begins, until long after the riders’ buttocks have recovered. In total over 1000 horses will be used to stage this audacious race.

The cost will be $9,500 per rider and all the details and further general information can be found on the official website:

About The Adventurists
The Adventurists is run by the League of Adventurists International Ltd, an award winning company based in the UK with gangly tentacles that stretch around the world. They organise unusual and difficult adventures that raise money for charity. To date participants on their adventures have raised well over 1 million pounds for great causes around the world.

About Tengri Group, Mongolia
Tengri Group are one of the biggest companies in Mongolia, with interests in tourism and hospitality, agriculture, property management, IT and energy. For more see

About Maggie Pattinson
Maggie Pattinson is Chef d'Equipe of the British Home International Endurance Team and endurance expert extraordinnaire. Maggie has more feathers in her endurance bow than you could shake a stick at. She has trained, ridden and crewed at International Level and as well as her esteemed position as Chef d'Equipe she runs her own endurance training company On the Hoof and trains a number of high profile individuals. One of her protégé, Chris Baker, became the highest placed British rider ever in the 2009 Tevis Cup. With On the Hoof Maggie trains all levels of riders in every aspect of the sport from pacing to fitness and map reading.

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