Monday, April 05, 2010

Australia: Endurance horse riding test

Matthew Lee | 6th April 2010
photo: Karen Trundell with horse Zac during a break in competition at Imbil

THE Easter long weekend is used by many Australians as a chance to kick back and unwind.

THE Easter long weekend is used by many Australians as a chance to kick back and unwind.

This wasn’t the case, however, for the many members of the Far-A-Way Endurance Riders Club at the weekend.

With a strong membership base drawn from throughout the Sunshine Coast, the club hosted its first ride of the season in Imbil – the 2010 Easter Endurance Carnival.

The competitive line-up included an 84km ride in addition to a 120km challenge and an epic marathon traversing 320km.

The three events were highlights of a schedule involving nine events in total spread across five action-packed days.

Eager spectators gathered in Imbil yesterday as the marathon ride was expected to come to a close at the Imbil Showgrounds.

The course negotiated by riders was largely similar to that of previous years, with hills and undulating countryside.

During these events, horse safety is of paramount importance and all endurance rides were carried out subject to current specifications for the sport in Australia.

Horses were monitored for their condition at various checkpoints, including physical inspections involving the measuring of heart rate.

The event was only possible due to the army of volunteers that donated their Easter long weekend to take part in a sport that captures their hearts.

A highlight of the Easter Endurance Carnival was the social atmosphere, where young and older riders alike were able to assemble together after a day’s riding at the camp grounds and share their experiences.

Organisers thanked competitors for nominating and the many volunteers for their participation.

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