Monday, February 28, 2011

New Zealand: South Island Endurance Championships 2011 - Full Article

24/02/2011 11:26:09 a.m.

The Mt Nimrod Endurance Club put on a brilliant weekend for the South Island Endurance Champs, 18-20 February, based at Cannington, Cave in South Canterbury, but the glory well and truly belonged to father and daughter, Philip and Helen Graham.
The CEI 3* 160km ride started at 3am with the 40km loop. The first rider into the vet ring (in 2.41.10) was Philip Graham with Wolf Gang Amadeus, followed closely by several other riders including the five starters from the North Island who had made the long trip down.

The 160km riders rode all four loops with loops 2 and 4 being repeated before the final loop of 20km. Graham had fellow Canterbury rider, Kylie Avery and Silands Mia Bella, hot on his heels all day so it was no surprise that the two decided to fight out the title with a gallop through the last paddock – around 500m in length. Some said the finish was too close to call with Graham and Avery riding neck in neck over the line, but sadly for Avery, who vetted out lame, the final line honours were made in the vet ring, Graham’s horse going through to take the trophy in a time of 9.33.43. North Islander Sean Trafford, on Sayfwood Rolling Stone, crossed the line over an hour after Graham to take second place and was followed sometime later by wife Alexandra Rogers, riding Supre Nickel; seven out of 12 starters completing this track that had a good mixture of rolling hills, flat farm land and tracks, metal and tar seal road verges and plenty of challenges along the way.

Best Conditioned horse for the 3* was judged the following day with “Wolfie” uncontested and looking fit and sound, to claim this prize also...

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