Monday, July 04, 2011

Australia: Golden Performance - Full Article

Gerard Walsh | 5th July 2011

FREESTONE has the top endurance horse-and-rider combination in Australia following the success of Cora Becker and Bones the Wizard in the FEI 160km three-star Australian National Championship at the Al Reef and RM Williams Endurance Festival Ride.

Becker went to the Australian championships at Toorbul near Caboolture with one strapper, husband Laurie Woodruff, and won the major event in eight hours, 46.34 minutes.

She was in the lead group of seven throughout.

Becker was at a disadvantage against competitors with a larger numbers of strappers who could prepare their horse quicker in hold time for the five veterinary checks as required in a 160km event.

As the lead group went into the last veterinary check, some of the horses were fatigued and the riders had to wait until the heart beat of their horse was under 64 beats a minute to continue.

Bones the Wizard was in top condition and passed the fifth check with flying colours which meant Becker was in third place at the start of the final 17km leg.

She caught the two horse-and-rider combinations in front of her with 10km to go and then took a 200m lead before winning by a second...

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