Courier-journal.com - Full Article
September 19 2010
Endurance competition tests the speed and endurance of the horse and the management skills of the rider, who must have a knowledge of pace and efficient and safe use of the horse over considerable distances.
The ride is 100 miles, held on one day in six stages with a compulsory stop after every phase for veterinarians to check the horses' fitness to continue. A horse's heart rate must return to 64 beats per minute within a certain period before it can advance to the next loop.
There also are mandatory “hold times” or rest periods, varying from 30 to 50 minutes depending on the phase, before competitors can go to the next stage.
* Endurance racing in Indiana
* Endurance rider prepares for games
The competitor who finishes the race in the shortest time — and whose horse passes a final veterinary exam and post-race drug testing — wins. A competitor is timed not only while on the course but until the horse's heart rate returns to normal and it goes to the vet gate.
Countries designate four members whose times can count toward the team competition and a fifth can compete as an individual. Team medals are determined by adding the times of the top three finishers on a team...
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