Sunday, October 09, 2011

Reynolds wins third Tevis Cup

Auburn Journal
Auburn teenager Shackelford second
By Todd Mordhorst Auburn Journal

The route was different, but the results were quite familiar for Jeremy Reynolds at the Tevis Cup endurance ride Saturday.

The endurance horse trainer from San Jose rode to his third Tevis Cup Saturday evening. He completed the re-routed ride in 9 hours, 31 minutes, accounting for the two hours of required rest time.

The ride began in Auburn for the first time after heavy snow high in the Sierra left much of the trail too dangerous for the horses to navigate. Tevis Cup was postponed from its usual July start because of the unusually deep snow pack in the Sierra that lingered through the summer.

Reynolds won atop 7-year-old Riverwatch after winning Tevis in 2004 and 2007 on CV Eli.

“Today was a blast,” Reynolds said. “We had a good plan and we stuck to it. I knew I had a lot of horse left at the end. It was a fun day.”

Reynolds rode with 19-year-old Rachel Shackelford at the front of the field for much of the day before pulling ahead for good about 12 miles from the finish.

Shackelford finished second, wearing a broad smile as she rode into McCann Stadium and tearing up at the finish. The Placer High graduate and Lincoln resident rode BR Cody del Sol, a 17-year-old Arab who completed his final endurance ride in style.

“I had a great start and he knows the trail really well so once his nose was headed toward Auburn he knew what to do,” Shackelford said. “I’ve been riding him since I was 5. It was a big moment for us (at the finish) because I knew this was his last ride.”

Reynolds imparted some of his riding knowledge to Shackelford as they rode Saturday. The two met when Rachel was just 9 at the Fort Shelbourne Endurance Ride and they’ve ridden together several times since then. Shackelford was happy to be able to pick up some tips on her to the impressive result.

“He’s a good family friend and he was giving me some pointers along the way,” she said. “We had a great time.”

Reynolds said he was impressed by Shackelford’s maturity. She slowed down late in the race, sensing her horse’s fatigue.

“She put the horse first and I admire her for that – especially because she’s such a young rider,” Reynolds said.

Saturday’s victory was the latest and most prestigious in a series of impressive results for Reynolds, whose wife Heather is also a former Tevis winner. Reynolds has won rides each of the last three weeks, including the North American Endurance Team Championship in Plumas County.

Dennis Summers of Gifford, Wash. rode in just before 8 p.m. Saturday night to claim third place. Dayna Weary, from Prescott, Ariz., placed fourth, followed closely by Garrett Ford of Durango, Colo., and Scottsdale, Ariz. resident Clydea Hastie.

Riders have 24 hours to complete the ride and earn a coveted Tevis Cup completion buckle. The top 10 finishers are eligible for the prestigious Haggin Cup, which is awarded to the horse judged most fit to continue riding at the finish.

The Tevis Cup and Haggin Cup will be awarded today at the Gold Country Fairgrounds. There will be a barbecue at 1 p.m. followed by the awards ceremony at 2 p.m.

See Monday’s Journal for results of the Haggin Cup judging.

Full article, Auburn Journal

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