Brechinadvertiser.co.uk - Full Article
Despite the inclement weather and poor ground conditions over the early months of this year being responsible for delays in training programmes and competitive rides, Brechin based rider John Thomson and his pure bred Arabian endurance horse Prince Omar headed south for their first competitive ride of the season.
John and Omar joined 130 other combinations at the Endurance Great Britain National ride at Durham Valleys in early April with Team Omar taking on the 82 kilometres class.
The route, broken into a series of loops, followed sections of bridleways and disused railway lines making the going ideal for Omar’s flat speed conditioning.
Despite a temperature of minus two degrees Celsius in the early morning start, by the time Team Omar came into Vet Gate one the sun was up and the temperature had reached what seemed like a “tropical” 14 degrees Celsius.
By this stage Team Omar had covered the first 40 kilometres loop in under two and a half hours.
With the crew working flat out Omar was quickly vetted and the second loop covered in a time of two hours and 17 minutes to gain a National 2 award and gold standard.
“With the weather playing havoc with training plans and our first planned National ride in Cumbria cancelled there was always a slight worry about being fully prepared for a big distance early in the season,” explained John...
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