Thursday, November 14, 2019

Belgium: Cooling gel saw Endurance horse fail two drug tests; rider not at fault - Full Article

November 14, 2019

A Belgium-registered rider whose horse tested positive for an anti-inflammatory medication after two Endurance rides bore no fault for the breaches, the FEI Tribunal has ruled.

Jacques Sabeau was not fined or suspended over the breaches, which involved harpagoside, an anti-inflammatory drug with pain-killing effects.

He competed the horse Eaunoire Cookies in a CEI1* 100km Endurance contest in Bullange, Belgium, on June 30 last year, and in a CEI2* event in Wimmenau, France, in early September last year.

Urine samples taken from each event returned positive results for harpagoside, which is listed as a controlled medication under the FEI’s anti-doping rules...

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Wednesday, November 13, 2019

UAE: Fine, suspension for Endurance rider over positive drugs test in horse - Full Article

November 13, 2019

A young Endurance rider from the United Arab Emirates has been fined 7500 Swiss francs and suspended for two years after his UAE-registered horse tested positive for muscle-building compounds.

Khalifa Ali Khalfan Al Jahouri, who was aged 19 at the time of the drugs breach in September 2017, had competed the horse 8 Minute, who was not trained by him, in a 120km event for junior and young riders in Valeggio sul Mincio, Italy.

Samples taken from the horse confirmed the presence of nandrolone and stanozolol, which are listed as banned substances under the FEI’s anti-doping rules...

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Monday, November 11, 2019

Endurance riding in Ukraine on the rise - Full Article

10 November 2019
Race Report made with the assistance of Lesia Gordiienko

Shchilin Endurance Equestrian Club, Iatski, Kyiv region. Sunday 6 October 2019.

Endurance riding in Ukraine is becoming more and more popular throughout recent years.

Due to the great enthusiasm of the famous endurance rider and Shchilin Endurance equestrian club owner Mr Czhou Zhuisi, who organizes FEI rides every autumn.

The rides of CEI2* 120k and CEI1* 80k were organized for both senior and young riders. Three loops of 12, 20 and 34km involved a mix of long plane field roads, moderate hills, forest paths and picturesque countryside. The track was rather technical and challenging with long speedy stretches and slopes to walk down...

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Sunday, November 10, 2019

Survival of Endurance rests on crucial vote, says advocacy group - Full Article

November 6, 2019

The very survival of Endurance as an FEI discipline is at stake when national delegates vote on new rules for the sport at the upcoming FEI General Assembly, a respected advocacy group says.

Clean Endurance is urging all national federations to approve the 2020 FEI Endurance Rules during the annual gathering, being held in Moscow in mid-November.

The group, a global collective which combats fraud and doping in Endurance, and seeks to restore the traditional values of the discipline, says it has written to all 134 national federations ahead of the Moscow meeting.

It is asking them to vote in favour of the rules in order to ensure the survival of Endurance as an FEI discipline.

They told secretary generals around the world that their letter was a last resort to try to convey the emergency faced by Endurance, saying that a positive vote was of the utmost importance...

Read more here

Friday, November 08, 2019

UAE: Former endurance rider Ana Mendez revels in new role as a flat-racing trainer - Full Article

Argentine scores a double at Sharjah Racecourse’s first meeting of the new season

Published: November 02, 2019 18:54
Leslie Wilson Jr, Racing & Special Features Writer

Dubai: Former endurance rider Ana Mendez is revelling in her new role as a flat-racing handler where she is in charge of the Al Wathba Stables owned by Shaikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister of the UAE and Minister of Presidential Affairs.

The Argentine horsewoman, who only took out an ERA’s training license two months ago, matched reigning champion Ernst Oertel win-for-win at the Sharjah Equestrian Club’s first meeting of the 2019-2020 UAE racing season on Saturday.

Mendez did not waste time to get off the mark at Abu Dhabi last week when she sent out Saarookh to secure a career-first victory that will always remain very close to her heart.

As the action turned to Sharjah, Mendez began the afternoon in fine style when Rawaa ran out a comfortable winner of the opening Sharjah Sports Maiden.

She then doubled the score with Fandim in the Longines Conquest VHP Maiden.

Mendez, a regular on the endurance scene, has for the past five years been honing her flat-racing skills that are essentially focused on Purebred Arabians, as an assistant trainer...

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Australia: Endurance riders raise funds to support drought relief - Full Article

October 31 2019

The Lachlan Endurance Riders Club has donated $4000 to drought relief efforts in NSW, following through on a commitment made earlier in the year.

The club decided to contribute to attempts to alleviate the drought's effects earlier in the year, and after careful consideration, decided to do so through Lions International, who have more than 600 volunteers donating thousands of hours of their time servicing Central NSW.

There are several steps in the Lions International aid process, which made it clear that it was the right organisation for us to direct our energy towards assisting.

First and foremost, it is co-ordinated through the Geurie Lions Club, and with assistance from Wellington Lions, all money donated is used to purchase hay direct from farmers, as well as stock lick blocks, while delivering both items to communities in need...

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Tuesday, November 05, 2019

Clean Endurance urges National Federations to approve 2020 FEI Endurance Rules

5 November 2019
Immediate Release

Clean Endurance has written to all 134 National Federations invited to the FEI General Assembly in Moscow on November 19th 2019, asking them to vote in favour of the 2020 Endurance Rules Proposals in order to ensure the survival of Endurance as a FEI discipline.

They told the National Federation Secretary Generals that their letter was a last resort to try and convey to them the absolute emergency situation Endurance is in today, and that a positive vote was of the utmost importance.

Clean Endurance sketched the dire straits Endurance is in as follows:

‘Back in 2014, the FEI created the Endurance Strategic Planning Group (ESPG) which concluded that emergency measures were needed to reduce the numbers of doped, injured and dying horses at Endurance competitions. Only a few of their 41 recommendations were implemented and no improvement was seen.

In fact, the situation kept getting worse and worse, with ever increasing Catastrophic Injuries and the FEI Tribunal overwhelmed with doping and abuse cases. Currently, two thirds of all suspensions are for Endurance riders and trainers, over half of the Administrative Sanctions for doping involve Endurance horses ( and the winter season is only just beginning), over half of all doping cases treated by the FEI Tribunal in 2019 were Endurance related, and 80% of horse abuse sanctions imposed by the Tribunal this year were for Endurance. Numerous other abuse cases involving Endurance horses are queuing up to be heard by the Tribunal. An ever-increasing number of horses are collapsing and dying during Endurance competitions all over the world. This endangers ALL horse sports including the Olympic disciplines by bringing them into disrepute.

The continuing problems led the FEI to create the Endurance Temporary Committee in 2018 which was charged with creating rule proposals to protect the horses by putting them first, and thus ensuring Endurance could survive as a FEI discipline.’

Clean Endurance than pointed out that prior attempts at improving the Endurance Rules (in 2017 for example) failed, but that this time, commercial or political interests could not be allowed to prime over horse welfare, nor could a lack of involvement from those National Federations not actively participating in Endurance. They also mentioned that National Federations had no doubt, as was the case in 2017, received presentations from those National Federations who prefer to continue with racing horses at high speeds over very long distances and who will have tried to persuade them that this is the future. But that instead, they should ask themselves why the career span of a young horse sold to take part in these races is less than two years, and why the rate of positives to prohibited substances in that region is 12% - nearly 10 times greater than any other horse sport in any other country.

Clean Endurance went on to quote FEI President Ingmar de Vos from his opening speech at the 2019 FEI Sports Forum:

“Regardless of all actions undertaken, all the decisions, and all the resources made available we still have the same issues: horse welfare and the integrity of the sport remain huge concerns in Endurance. There are still too many injuries and fatalities, and I can only talk about those that we know of. We collectively hold our breaths when the season in the Middle East starts again. After Tryon, the FEI board unanimously agreed this had to stop. We need to bring horsemanship back to the heart of Endurance. It is our responsibility AND THIS IS THE LAST CHANCE. Endurance has great potential for the future, but NOT AS IT CURRENTLY EXISTS”.

Ingmar de Vos also stressed the fact that “We need to be courageous to make the right decisions in November”.

Clean Endurance wrote that ‘regardless of whether you as a National Federation are actively involved in Endurance or not, we urge you to vote a resounding YES to ALL the Endurance rule propositions the FEI submits to you. These proposals are not perfect, but an important steppingstone to finally get Endurance under control and build a sustainable future for it, within the FEI’.

They concluded their letter by stating they trust that the National Federations will support the FEI in its efforts for clean and fair sport.

Clean Endurance is a global collective which aims to restore the traditional values of their sport. It combats fraud, doping and abuse in collaboration with the FEI, National Federations and numerous other stakeholders.

Clean Endurance is happy to supply links for further reading, including coverage in bona fide news media.

Clean Endurance also welcomes comments and suggestions.

Find them on Facebook and contact them through the message button, or email

Friday, November 01, 2019

Advice from a 70-Year-Old Endurance Champ - Full Story

31 October 2019
Words by Noelle Maxwell

70-year-old Bob Long reveals how preparation helped turn him from western rider to Endurance champion!

When it comes to Endurance, longevity is clearly an advantage.

That’s certainly the case for Bob Long, the 70-year-old American who – like his horses – just keeps on going!

Bob, of Boise, Idaho, just recently became the oldest ever winner of the 2019 Mongol Derby. That’s a 650-mile trek through the wilderness of the East Asian country.

As with all Endurance athletes, Bob puts his success down to readiness. “Age is just a number – preparation trumps youth,” he said recently.

We found out more about how Bob's preparations took him from long-distance novice to champion!

Read more here:

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

South Africa: Australian winner of world's wildest horse race on Wild Coast - Full Article


Cape Town - The world’s grittiest horse race, Race the Wild Coast (RTWC), was won on Friday, October 25, 2019 when Australian rider Emma Manthorpe crossed the finish line at Kei Mouth, ahead of 13 other international competitors.

The dramatic multi-stage 350km race, sponsored by KTC and supported by Jack Black Beer, was the third iteration of the race, held on the Eastern Cape’s iconic, unspoilt Wild Coast.

It took place with entrants from as far afield as the USA, Hungary, Australia, Switzerland, UAE, France, Ireland, South Africa and the UK.

There were two riders from South Africa. Seven male and seven female riders competed against one another.

According to race organiser and co-founder Barry Armitage of Rockethorse Racing: “We congratulate Emma - as well as all the participants - and recognise their grit, tenacity, and exceptional horsemanship. The race is always gruelling, despite the fact that the Wild Coast is a paradise of a location...”

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Friday, October 25, 2019

Final version of Endurance rules set to go to FEI General Assembly - Full Article

October 25, 2019

The Endurance Temporary Committee, tasked with finding a sustainable way ahead for the discipline, has published its final modified version of proposed rules for next year.

The FEI General Assembly will vote on the new rules in Moscow in mid-November.

The Endurance Temporary Committee was appointed by the FEI in October last year in a bid to find solutions to ongoing welfare issues and reputational damage to the discipline, much of it arising from the fast-style desert racing centred on the Gulf region.

The committee says it has considered all feedback in shaping the final rules, which will come into effect as soon as reasonably possible in 2020 if passed by national federations at the General Assembly...

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Cambodia: Third endurance riding held as CEF looks to greater heights - Full Article

October 25 2019
Jose Rodriguez T. Senase / Khmer Times

A bigger turnout marked the third edition of the endurance riding event organized by the Cambodia Equestrian Federation (CEF).

Kao Vannarin and Sou Thai won in their respective categories in the competition held over the week in Kampong Chhnang province.

With Pick as his mount, Mr Vannarin, a well-known and experienced rider, won in the 40kms category over nine other competitors.

The second place went to Cheam Kean riding on Rocky and third spot was won by Dun Sokhorn on Chamreon.

In the 20kms category, it was the turn of Mr Thai riding on Liza to shine. Second spot went to Rinda Menlong on Kropum, while So Ram riding on Sros bagged the third place.

There were 14 riders that joined the endurance riding event this time. Of the number, 14 competed in the 40kms category, while four joined in the 20kms division...

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South Africa: Lormar endurance ride - Full Article

25 October 2019
Race Report made with the assistance of Carmen du Preez

Fairview Farm, Middelburg, Eastern-Cape South Africa. Friday 18 and Saturday 19 October 2019. Karoo club hosted the legendary Lormar Eudurance Ride and 95 participants were challenged by abnormally hot weather and drought conditions making the road surfaces particularly hard and stoney.

Riders were forced to be more vigilant and careful as the course was flat but had many surface changes and turns.
Samson Mjika on Perdeberg Blue Domino owned by Danie Louw skilfully grabbed the win on the FEI 160 Standard weight category. Grabbing best conditioned and Best of the Best award. Sunette Burnette on Celine close on his heals at the end recovered smoothly after a close call with a fall near the finish. Only 6 of the 13 160 km starters finished the race...

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Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Mongolian Derby winner's book makes shortlist for William Hill sports prize - Full Article

By Bruce Jackson
4:52PM, OCT 22 2019

The shortlist for the William Hill Sports Book of the Year was revealed on Tuesday and Mongolian Derby legend Lara Prior Palmer features in the final six chasing the prestigious prize.

Rough Magic: Riding the World’s Wildest Horse Race (Penguin Random House) charts her unexpected win in the 1,000km race when she became the youngest winner of the race at the age of 19.

Endurance has clearly caught the imagination of the judges as another finalist is Rise of the Ultra Runners: A Journey to the Edge of Human Endurance by Adharanand Finn (Faber & Faber).

The winner, who will collect £30,000, will be announced at a reception at the Royal Horseguards Hotel on December 5. The shortlisted authors will receive a leather bound copy of their book and a £3,000 cash prize...

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Monday, October 14, 2019

Photographer Ian Haggerty home from Mongolia - Full Article

Mr Haggerty took part in an endurance race, the Wild Coast, and met people there that helped him to apply to become a photographer at the Mongol Derby.

October 12, 2019

KINROSS – It is not everyone who gets selected to be an official photographer at the Mongol Derby in Mongolia in Far East Asia.

Mr Ian Haggerty was chosen as a photographer and recently returned from his trip to Mongolia.

The Mongol Derby is an equestrian endurance race that extends over 1 000km through the Mongolian Steppe (grassland eco region) and is known as the world’s longest horse race.

He described the derby as an incredible adventure for both the crew and the horse riders.

“I do not think anyone, especially the riders, can explain to people what they have to go through and have people actually understand,” said Mr Haggerty.

“You have to experience it for yourself to truly grasp it...”

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South Africa: Contaminated hay behind drugs breach in Endurance horse, tribunal finds - Full Article

October 12, 2019

Contamination of teff hay with an invasive weed was behind a failed drug test in an Endurance horse in South Africa, the FEI Tribunal was told.

The contamination gave rise to a positive drug test for atropine and scopolamine in the horse Eks Aman, who competed in a CEI1* 80km event at Bredasdorp on September 29 last year.

The rider, Nico-Meyer Le Roux, acknowledged the positive drugs test, but received no fine or disqualification after the tribunal and FEI agreed that he bore no fault or negligence over the breach.

The source of the two related substances was found to have arisen from contamination of the hay with Datura stramonium, also known in South Africa as oileboom of stinkblaar.

The weed, which goes by the English names jimsonweed or devil’s snare, is a plant in the nightshade family which is now found in many parts of the world...

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Thursday, October 10, 2019

A vintage season finale at the British Horse Feeds' Red Dragon Festival of Endurance

(Published:09 October 2019)

Endurance GB’s British Horse Feeds’ Red Dragon Festival of Endurance serves up vintage season finale

Victories for England in Home International, Scotland in Celtic Challenge and Yorkshire in British Horse Feeds’ Riding Clubs Endurance Team Final while Nikki Malcolm is popular winner of Red Dragon title event

Nikki Malcolm (pictured above by Kerry Dawson) and Oso Spiralling Wind capped a superb season with an outstanding win in the feature event, the two-day 160km Speedi-Beet Red Dragon Ride at the British Horse Feeds’ Red Dragon Festival of Endurance at Builth Wells. The pair conquered one of the toughest tracks in the Endurance GB calendar at an average speed of 12.7km/hr ahead of Chris Rendle with Druimghigha Shatish who completed in second place at 12km/hr. Ella Bunting with Aly’s Estrella De Rock (Rocky) took third spot at an average of 11.7km/hr. Remarkably, this was Nikki Malcolm’s fourth 160km win at Red Dragon.

Owned by Linda Mars and being trained and ridden in the UK at Nikki and her partner Nathan Sweeney’s Stride Ahead yard in Dorset, Oso Spiralling Wind (Spiral) was bred at Oso Arabians Stud which is managed by Amanda Kettlewell in New South Wales, Australia. The eight year old demonstrated his consistency and versatility by winning the RiderCise Southern Championships as well as romping around Royal Windsor and Euston Park with strong completions.

Nikki and Spiral coming up the hill - Photo courtesy of David Saunders Photography

Primed to perfection for his end of season foray over the spectacular Welsh mountains, at one point the talented grey was a full hour ahead of the field.

Nikki said: “The forecast had been for heavy rain on Saturday night so we thought we would kick on during the first day – we did the second day bar 5km all on our own. He just feeds off his rider – you have got to keep him interested and let him know that the race is still on. He definitely knew he was coming in for a win at the end when he galloped over the line.

“He has really proved himself as an 80km horse with 100% success rate this season and the logical progression for him next season will be a one-day 160km but we will regroup with Linda his owner and Amanda at Oso Arabians at the end of the season. For now we have a field at home which we rest for the winter and it is shoes off time and a chance for them all to graze as a herd for three months which they love.

“I didn’t think this was a particularly hard Red Dragon. John and Jane (Hudson) have done a lot of work to improve the route over the years and it rode really well. I just love this event, the whole organisation is brilliant and with the showground at Builth Wells as an amazing venue you certainly don’t feel like the sport is a poor relation in any way. On top of it the Home International there this year gave it a great atmosphere.”

Spiral took Best Condition in the Red Dragon and as a further dollop of icing on the cake for Team Stride Ahead, Nikki’s partner Nathan Sweeney earned a completion in the 80km Saddle Exchange Dragon’s Egg, riding for Ireland in the Home International with Jenny Lees’ Pearl Island Arabians’ six year old Hamdanieh Farhah, the only pure-bred Bahrain Arab mare competing in the UK.

In the other big class of the Festival, the British Horse Feeds’ Little Dragon 80km CER, another Dorset-based rider, Ylva Samantha Mowatt emerged the winner with Terminators Dream at 13.4km/hr from Kathy Carr with Aberllwyd Femme Fatalle in second place at 13.4km/hr. Abigail Chisholm took third place with Mellway Royalblue Diamond at 12.8km/hr. Kathy Carr’s Aberllwyd Femme Fatalle took the Best Condition Award.

With the added bonus of the Home International which is hosted annually by either England, Wales, Scotland or Ireland, as well as the Celtic Challenge, contested by teams from Ireland, Wales and Scotland plus, for the first time in many years, a squad from Cornwall entries to the Festival were high.

Achieving the fantastic feat of getting six riders home, England won the Home International ahead of Scotland with Ireland in third and Wales fourth. The Celtic Challenge went to Scotland.

England’s Chef d’Equipe Maggie Pattinson said: “I am proud of my stewardship as Chef for the England Home International team but in particular this year bringing the cup home makes the glow of pride even brighter!

“Following a couple weeks of wet weather I think we all knew we were in for a tough Dragon although we did largely get away with mostly dry weather in riding hours.

“John and Jane Hudson once again pulled together an amazing team of stewards, vets and helpers of all sorts to once again put on a fantastic event for which I speak from every national Chef to say a huge thank you – they are all amazing!”

Among highlights for the winning England squad were three notable ‘firsts’, a third place in their first 160km for Ella Bunting and ‘Rocky’, a completion at their first CER for Rebecca Parsler and Shade while in the 48km Home International Junior Class, Beth Stanley-Whiteley with Tiny was the youngest ever junior at eight years old achieving a remarkable second place.

ILDRA’s Helen McFarland announced that Ireland would be hosting the 2020 Home International at the St Patrick’s Coastal Ride over the first weekend in September. Like the British Horse Feeds’ Red Dragon Festival, this is another tough ride but with the promise of seal watching whilst cantering along miles of beach in the shadow of the mountains of Mourne.

A total of 265 horse and rider combinations took part in more than 30 classes at the British Horse Feeds' Red Dragon Festival of Endurance taking in the iconic mountain grassland and heather track from the venue at the Royal Welsh Showground, Builth Wells.

Sunday’s action featured The British Horse Feeds’ British Riding Clubs Endurance Team Final with nine Riding Clubs vying for the top prize in the 36km Novice Graded Endurance Ride. The hotly contested competition was won by Yorkshire RC, which numbers riders from across area 4 (Yorkshire). Ellen Valley followed in second place with the Wessex Wanderers in third.

Linda Birkitt who competed for Yorkshire RC in the 36km GER with Mistletoe said: “Our team was formed after a chance conversation and has grown over the last three years. We started the season this year at Wootton in Lincolnshire and have had team entries in Lincolnshire, Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Yorkshire rides which were all qualifiers for the championships.

“Our team members have a mixed experience of endurance with a couple of advanced riders and a pony club champion who provide us with invaluable advice but most team members are novice endurance riders, some of whom have had their first competitive season this year.”

The Yorkshire RC team’s horses are of varying breeds including Welsh cobs, part-bred Irish Draught, ISH, Arab, PBA and TB. Some of the team compete at dressage and show jumping and there are former event horses on the squad.

Linda explained: “We train individually most of the time but some riders do manage to meet up in between rides and train on the North Yorkshire Moors, Pennines or Yorkshire Wolds for hill work with some beach rides if possible. On ride days, our crews are an important part of our team with some riders crewing if they are not able to ride.

Linda added: “We had a fantastic time at Red Dragon with our win topping the weekend. John and Jane are brilliant supporters to all the riding club teams throughout the year and our thanks go to them.”

The other Riding Clubs who reached the final were; East Mendip, Hampshire Combined, New Forest Hunts, National Forest, Angels of the North and Red Kite.

Acting Chair of Endurance GB, Sue Box, who competed successfully for Wales in the Speedi-Beet Red Dragon 160km class said: “As ever it was a great privilege to ride over this amazing course and we are very grateful to all our sponsors especially headline sponsor, British Horse Feeds and the organising team led by John and Jane Hudson with their wonderful team of volunteers as well as all the landowners without whose support access to the spectacular terrain would not be possible. In the build up to the ride the organisers had to contend with really wet conditions and it was a feat to ensure that so many horse and rider combinations would be able to get round safely. However, the skies cleared for the ride itself, hosting the Home International and Celtic Challenge this year was a bonus and with record entries plus some memorable performances over the weekend, this was a vintage Red Dragon.”

John Hudson said: “We are delighted with the level of entries and would like to thank both our fantastic headline sponsor British Horse Feeds who have been hugely supportive as ever and we simply could not do all this without them, as well as all the other companies who get behind the ride. We also work with more than 30 landowners and large sections of the route are across private land. We cannot praise them enough for their friendly welcome and level of cooperation. We are very grateful to the three external teams who help to run the event: The Gloucestershire TRF led by Jacky German who mark the route so brilliantly, the medics from SARA led by Merv Fleming and RAYNET led by Evan Jones.

“A great team of hard-working volunteers worked together to steward the event brilliantly and our thanks also go to the Showground staff at Builth Wells for whom nothing was too much trouble. All in all, it added up to the best Red Dragon yet in our view.”

Will I'Anson, Sales Director for British Horse Feeds said: “We are delighted with our long and successful association with this prestigious ride and team behind it and so pleased that the weekend went so smoothly and produced some excellent competition. The British Horse Feeds’ Riding Club Endurance Championships is also going from strength to strength and this bodes well for the future.”

Monday, October 07, 2019

South Australian takes out Australian Championships in Queensland

Denise Keelan photography

October 6 2019

Young South Australian rider Stella Harbison took out the FEI 160km endurance ride at Stirling’s Crossing Equestrian Complex in Imbil, Queensland in the Equestrian Australia Championships this weekend.

The 30-year-old from the Adelaide Hills crossed the line riding Minton East Chaucer 11 hours and 17 minutes after setting out into the Imbil State Forest tracks at 2am that the morning to tackle the course.

Ride organiser and President of the Stirling’s Crossing Endurance Club Kim Moir said she was delighted with the Equestrian Australia Championships and complimented Ms Harbison on an exceptional ride.

“Stella finished 25th in her division in the 2019 Tom Quilty Gold Cup in July which was also hosted at Stirling’s Crossing Equestrian Complex,” said Ms Moir.

“To see her return from South Australia just two-and-a-half months later to take out the Equestrian Australia Championship title for the three-star Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI) accredited ride is impressive and we congratulate her on the outstanding result.

“Second place went to the owner of the Stirling’s complex, Matthew Sample riding Cedar Ridge Lyric while third place in the tough 160km ride went to Samantha Yates from the United Kingdom riding Ausden Prince Mahal.”

The junior title went to Tahlia Franke from Table Top, NSW riding Oso Florin who completed the ride in 13 hours and 45 minutes.

The event also included a hotly contested 80km FEI accredited ride (1 star), with the winner Imbil local Akhmed Pshunov crossing the line just six seconds ahead of runner-up Christopher Bailey from Orange, NSW who was only two and a half minutes ahead of Imbil local Nikki Scott who took out third.

“When you have riders out on the track for over five hours and they come across the line a few seconds apart it makes for great competition throughout the ride,” said Ms Moir.

“The junior title in this ride was also very close with Toowoomba riders taking home both first and second place when they came over the line only seven seconds apart having been out on the tracks for close to seven hours. 17-year-old Molly Choyce took out first and 15-year-old Mognild Eerkens came in second, with third place going to New Zealander Ana Whitehead (17).”

The two star 120km FEI ride saw only one completion with the junior title going to Elexis Webb from Boorabee Park, NSW.

In addition to the three Equestrian Australia Championship FEI rides, there were seven other rides at the event including two introductory rides to give new endurance riders the opportunity to try the sport.

Matthew Sample said he was very keen to grow the sport of endurance by offering a range of rides starting at 20km introductory rides and including 40km, 60km, 80km, 120km and 160km rides to cater for all skill levels.

“We love the sport and understand the need to offer entry level rides to attract new competitors,” said Mr Sample, who owns Australia’s only purpose-built endurance facility.

Over 182 riders participated across the thirteen rides bringing 400-500 support crew and family members to the Mary Valley region over the three-day event.

To find out more please visit

Australia: One step closer to Tom Quilty event - Full Article

Amanda Rayner
October 7 2019

Ravensthorpe endurance rider Jeanette Denham was the first to cross the line in the Western Australian Endurance Riders Association 160-kilometre event held from the Collie racecourse last weekend.

Jeanette defended her title as champion state rider, also taking out the much coveted award in 2016. She completed the course in a cracking time of 12 hours, 30 minutes - two minutes ahead of Paul Dyson on a competitive stallion who two months earlier had travelled to Queensland to compete in this year's Tom Quilty.

The ride run from the Collie racetrack was a prelude of the venue and course for the Tom Quilty Gold Cup ride, which is the Australian National championship of endurance riding, to be held in September next year. At midnight on Friday night, 24 riders left the Collie racetrack in still, dewy conditions with no moon in sight...

Read more here:

Wednesday, October 02, 2019

Qatar: Al Shaqab rider claims top 10 spot at World Endurance Championship - Young Horses - Full Article

1 October 2019
The Peninsula

Doha: Al Shaqab, member of Qatar Foundation, was in the spotlight once again when a member of the Al Shaqab Endurance team claimed a top-10 place at the FEI Meydan World Endurance Championship - Young Horses 2019 that recently concluded in Italy.

Al Shaqab rider Mohammed Khalifa Al Sowaidi and his horse, Sa’ada Al Shaqab, earned 7th place in the event, which was aimed at 7-year-old horses.

Taking on competitors from several countries, Al Sowaidi and Sa’ada Al Shaqab covered a distance of 120km...

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Endurance GB attracts record entry at final season classic - British Horse Feeds’ Red Dragon

(Published:01 October 2019)

The Home International, Celtic Challenge and British Horse Feeds’ Riding Clubs Endurance Team Final all being staged next weekend (4-6 Oct)

With just three more rides left to take place in Endurance GB’s 2019 calendar, organisers have announced record entries for the sport’s traditional end of season classic, The British Horse Feeds’ Red Dragon Festival of Endurance.

This year’s Festival has the added bonus of the Home International which is hosted annually by either England, Wales, Scotland or Ireland, as well as the Celtic Challenge, contested each year by teams from Ireland, Wales, Scotland and Cornwall.

A total of 265 horse and rider combinations are set to take part in more than 30 classes over 365 ‘ride days’ taking in the iconic mountain grassland and heather track from the venue at the Royal Welsh Showground, Builth Wells. A total of 13 of the country’s leading riders will line up for the top Advanced challenge, the showpiece two-day 160km Speedi-Beet Red Dragon. Among those taking part in the top class are Nikki Malcolm with Oso Spiralling Wind, winners of the RiderCise Southern Championship and Alex Tennant winner of both the RiderCise Northern and Welsh Championships. Alex will partner Watibou Coutillas with whom she won the Welsh stage of the Championships at Pen Ddol Y Gader back in August.

A total of 23 riders will contest the other Advanced Class, The British Horse Feeds’ Little Dragon, while the largest entry of the weekend is for the Saddle Exchange Dragon’s Egg – a two day 78km (42km/36km) graded endurance ride which is open to Advanced, Open or Novice endurance riders and is set to have 37 starters. Sunday’s action features The British Horse Feeds’ British Riding Clubs Endurance Team Final with nine Riding Clubs vying for the top prize in the 36km Novice Graded Endurance Ride. The Riding Clubs to have reached the final are; East Mendip, Ellen Valley, Hampshire Combined, New Forest Hunts, Yorkshire, Wessex Wanderers, National Forest, Angels of the North and Red Kite.

Acting Chair of Endurance GB, Sue Box, who is competing for Wales in the Speedi-Beet Red Dragon 160km class said: “The strong entries for the British Horse Feeds’ Red Dragon Festival of Endurance reflect both increased membership and ride entries for Endurance GB across the board this season. It is a great privilege to be able to ride over this amazing course and we are very grateful to our sponsors, the organising team led by John and Jane Hudson, their wonderful team of volunteers as well as all the landowners without whose support access to the spectacular terrain would not be possible.”

John Hudson said: “We are delighted with the level of entries and would like to thank both our fantastic headline sponsor British Horse Feeds as well as all the other companies who are supporting the ride. We have built a great partnership with the team at BHF and it is rewarding to see the ride going from strength to strength. Hosting the Home International and Celtic Challenge is a bonus and this should be an exciting and close fought competition with established senior riders as well as potential stars of the future taking part. Given the weather forecast for the weekend, our challenge now is to deliver a safe and enjoyable event for all those taking part.”

Will I'Anson, Sales Director for British Horse Feeds said: “I am so pleased that we are continuing our long association with this prestigious ride. We look forward to the event continuing to grow and become even more popular as a celebration of endurance riding at all levels.”

Monday, September 30, 2019

Germany: Endurance Ride Possen - Full Article

29th September 2019
Race Report made with the assistance of Antje Weida

Freizeitpark Possen, Sondershausen, Germany. Saturday 7 September 2019.

At the beginning of September, a new international endurance ride was established on the Possen, in Sondershause/Türingen (GER), which also offered four different national rides.

Anne Wegner from Scheden (Göttingen) and her team of the Aynur Endurance Stable tried to create a beautiful and exciting event, which they did with a lot of work and effort. Beside the event, the participants could enjoy some attractions, like local wild animals, cheetahs, bears, a petting zoo, the famous Possenturm and the high ropes course on the Possen.

Thursday afternoon the first participants started arriving with their horses at the Freizeitpark Possen. Till the following day, paddocks and cooling areas were quickly equipped and set up. In the afternoon the veterinary preliminary examination, which all horses passed, was scheduled, afterwards the animals were cared for and waited for the next morning to start the race...

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Thursday, September 26, 2019

Arabian Horse Intl Showcases New Formats

Welcome to Arabian Horse Intl Endurance / Flat Racing! We hope you enjoy it and have a Good Reading!

Arabian Horse Intl has changed. Instead of two magazines, there are now five: three on Arabian Horse Flat Racing - Purebred Arabian Races Around the World, HH Sheikh Mansoor Global Arabian Horse Racing Festival and Purebred Arabian Races in Brazil - and two on endurance riding: International Endurance Races and Endurance Races in Brazil. As the races take place, the magazines will be updated, so by the end of the year we will have a short summary of what happened throughout the year. And the site is more dynamic: with the main stories of each modality and whoever wants to can download each magazine in PDF format, or see them as magazines. Just access the links.

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Through the Eyes of a Mom: Alex Shampoe's FEI Endurance World Championship for YR-J in Italy

September 18 2019
Aileen Ellis photo

17-year-old Alex Shampoe, of Colorado Springs, Colorado, was one of 5 USA Young Riders that participated in the 120-km FEI Endurance World Championships for Young Riders & Juniors in Pisa, Italy, on September 18. Riding Valerie Kanavy’s 11-year-old Arabian gelding, Dude Free Gold, the pair made it to the next to last loop before being pulled.

Alex's mom, Aileen Ellis, wrote the following recap afterwards:

Well, it is hard to know how to start this post. Alex and I have been in Italy for 19 days. We spent the first two weeks in Bologna with Dude. Alex spent her days walking and riding Dude, showing Dude, trotting Dude and doing what riders do before a world championship. I spent my time cleaning stalls, filling water buckets, driving through hundreds of roundabouts in Italian traffic. We all moved to Pisa a few days ago.

24 hours ago Alex and Dude Free Gold, along with four other horse rider teams from the US started in the 2019 Young Rider Endurance World Championship. The ride was 120 km long and included four loops. Dude was pulled for lameness at the mandatory recheck before going out on the final 20 km (12 mile) loop. It was so hard to watch Alex's dream come crashing to an end in a second, but life happens and we survive. I watched the expression on Alex's face. It was Hanna who was able to put it into words hours later. What we saw was relief. Relief that if Dude was really lame (which he was) that it was caught by the outstanding FEI vets and that Dude would not be asked to complete those final 20 km in any pain. There was no doubt that if the vets did not pull Dude, Alex would have rider optioned.... always putting Dude first.

To end the story here with the facts would be an injustice of the magnitude of the trip. There are so many highlights to share.

Congratulations to the US team for taking 6th place at this championship. What an incredible accomplishment. Congratulations to the teams from UAE, Spain and Italy. Your horses were amazing. Congratulations to Kate Bishop from the US. You demonstrated what we all know; ride your horse's ride. Congratulations to Maria Mussio and Katie Baldino and your families and crew for not giving up on your dreams to complete a world championship.

The organization of this ride was top notch. The facility was beautiful. The FEI veterinary team was friendly and fair.

We can look at the negatives in our life and feel sorry for ourselves or we can find their is always something positive to see.

Kimberly Loutzenheiser rider optioned after loop 2. It was great to see so much maturity from Kimberly at such a difficult moment. In some ways, this experience will bond you and Alex together.

Alex's crew could not have been more supportive throughout the entire experience. Thank you to Ian Harrison, Mustafa, Hanna and Andres. We could use Andres's trot outs to teach us all how to present our horses. The friendship from Hanna through the ups and downs of the week was so vital to Team Dude. Mustafa brought so much experience to the team. I believe Doctor Harrison loves and respects Dude as much as Alex does. His confidence in Alex and Dude never faltered.

So many people have texted and private messaged both me and Alex late yesterday and into this morning. Your support means the world to us. Some of you I know very well....others of you were names on facebook that yesterday became friends. You have asked how Alex is doing.

If you know Alex, you already know how Alex is doing. I saw so many sides of Alex yesterday. At the start of the race I saw the calm confident rider.... providing confidence to Dude. As the day progressed I saw the self advocate, taking care of herself and Dude. At the moment Dude was pulled I saw the young girl who loves her horse (OK... Valerie's horse). I saw the team mate who stayed for hours at the venue to cheer for her teammates, as well as well as riders and horses from many other teams. I saw the hard worker who helped carry gear back to the stalls. I saw the young lady laughing with her crew at a late dinner last night when all she wanted was to be in bed. I saw the daughter I am so proud of.

To answer your question, Alex will come out of this experience stronger. Stronger as a rider, stronger as a team member, stronger as a advocate for herself and her horses (and your horses too) as well as horses around the world. When one dreams ends it is replaced by another.... expect posts on Alex’s next adventure starting in early November.

There are so many people to thank.

I will begin with Alex's crew. Your support, both from a horse perspective and a friend persepctive was more than any Mom could hope for their daughter. Thank you.

It may seem strange, but I want to thank Dude. Your spirit was amazing. Your attitude incredible. You took care of Alex all day. You never gave up. I am sure you and Alex will ride together again. After spending 3 weeks with you....I love you.

And most important, thank you to Valerie Kanavy. This adventure never would have been possible with out the trust, guidance and support of Valerie. You have done so much for my daughter, for other young riders, and for the sport of endurance. You took Alex in for over 3 months, not as a farm hand, not as an exercise rider, but as a member of your team and a member of your family. There are no words to express our gratitude.

Monday, September 23, 2019

Azizi Developments Sponsors H.H. Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Italy Endurance Festival - Full Article

September 22nd, 2019

Azizi Developments, one of the leading private developers in the UAE, sponsored the highly-esteemed H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Italy Endurance Festival, part of the Toscana Endurance Lifestyle 2019, held at the San Rossore Racecourse in Pisa, Italy between the 17th and 19th of September 2019. This is the third consecutive year in which Azizi sponsors the prestigious event.

As one of the most prominent equestrian gatherings, the Endurance Festival comprises a series of races, including the 120km FEI Meydan World Championship - Young Riders and Juniors, the 120km H.H. Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Italy Endurance Festival sponsored by Azizi and the 120km FEI World Championship Young Horses. The H.H. Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Italy Endurance Festival had a starting lineup of 225 horses and 35 participating nations...

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Friday, September 20, 2019

Scotland’s Katy riding high but needs help on road to Wales - Full Article

Thursday 19 September 2019

Young Katy Parvin of Peterculter has been selected to ride for Scotland for the second year in a row, in Wales next month.

Katy, aged 11, is an endurance rider and was asked to ride the 80k race ride in an adult slot but because of the English rules she is too young so has had to downgrade to a two-day 80k.

In Scotland she has raced up to 80km (50 miles ) in a day with her pony Misty.

Now the Culter Primary School pupil is looking for local businesses to sponsor her as she heads for the Home International and Celtic Challenge on October 5-6 at the Red Dragon, in Builth Wells.

“I’m starting to add up the costs and it’s starting to get scary so I’m looking for either financial support (sponsorship) or ideas how to get the support I need,” Katy told the Deeside Piper this week...

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Trio called up to Scottish team - Full Article

By Alistair Whitfield-
Published: 17:00, 19 September 2019

THREE local teenagers and their horses have been picked to represent Scotland in an international endurance riding competition.

The dedicated youngsters have been selected by the Scottish Endurance Riding Club as part of the team for the Home International and Capercaillie Challenge.

The challenge is premier endurance event in the UK.

First time team member Faith Clark, who attends Banff Academy ,and her pony Jazz have only been riding together for 18 months...

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Young Malaysian equestrian riders thrive under pressure - Full Article

By Fadhli Ishak - September 20, 2019

The national riders handled the pressure well to clinch a top-five finish at the FEI World Endurance Championships for Young Riders and Juniors in Italy on Wednesday.

National riders Faris Haikal Hassan Sa'ari, Aimin Azfar Nazulki and Yusuf Luqman Zakaria finished the120km race in a combined time of 20 hours, three minutes and 33 seconds to finish fifth from 35 nations in the Under-21 team event in San Rossore.

The United Arab Emirates won the title in a time of 14:18:45s, followed by Spain (14:33:03s), Italy (16:44:59s) and Belgium (19:12:37s).

Team manager Mohamad Din Mat said he was pleased to see the team overcome the challenges to achieve their target...

Read more here:

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Ireland: Record entries for 2019 St. Patrick’s Coast Endurance Ride - Full Article

By Bree Rutledge -September 18, 2019

THE 2019 St. Patrick’s Coast Endurance Ride, held on September 7, was a resounding success for all involved – whether riding, crewing or helping out, it was a brilliant day enjoyed by many. With a record number of entries, the event was truly bustling with riders and horses of all ages, breeds and disciplines, enjoying the fabulous riding offered across the spectacular Lecale area. Beginning at the excellent venue of Downpatrick Racecourse, which offered ample parking, on-site stabling, camping and the ever-popular burger van, over 140 riders headed out to explore the vast routes on offer throughout the scenic County Down landscape.

Perfect riding conditions on the day made for excellent photography, picked up by the official photographer, SDS Photo. If you missed out on purchasing your photographs at the event, check out the dedicated St. Patrick’s Coast album at ildra. All official photographs included with this article are courtesy of SDS Photo.

The St. Patrick’s Coast Endurance Ride runs over countryside, which is both varied and beautiful. This ride has a taste of everything. All riders firstly head out towards the East Down gallops, which gave many of the horses a chance to stretch their legs at a galloping pace. Riders who chose to ride the 20-mile route, then began to descend towards the endless beaches of Tyrella to Ballykinler, which are shadowed by the impressive Mourne Mountains, before riding back up towards to the historic Old Railway line of County Down. Riders then passed by the peaceful Ballydugan Lake to join the gorgeous grassy fields of Ballydugan and the ancient Windmill Hill, which are the hidden gems of the County Down countryside and are often unseen...

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UAE riders reign supreme at endurance c’ship in Italy - Full Article

September 18 2019

The UAE riders dominated the FEI Meydan World Endurance Championship for Young Riders and Juniors held at the San Rossore racecourse in Italy.

The event was part of the trilogy of races of Toscana Endurance Lifestyle 2019. The previous World Championship for Young Riders and Juniors was also held in Italy in Parco Giardino Sigurta, Verona in 2017.

Fares Al Mansoori, Saif Al Mazrouei, Shaheen Al Mazroei, Saeed Al Muhairi and Saif Beljafla were part of the UAE team which took part in the event...

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Longtime islander rides in Mongol Derby - Full Article

“I don’t think it’s possible to do enough to get ready for something like that.”

By Paul Rowley
Wednesday, September 18, 2019

On the second day of Ella Mildon’s 620-mile journey on horseback across the steppes of wild Mongolia, she got into trouble. Her sure-footed, semi-wild stallion had sunk down chest-deep into a muddy bog.

“The truth is, you can’t see sometimes when the marshes are going to give out beneath you,” she said, recounting the episode. But after some struggling, the horse was able to free itself.

Mildon, 23, a longtime island 4-H Rock Riders club member who now lives in Clallam County and has been riding horses for years, recently completed the Mongol Derby, a treacherous race across great plains, mountain paths and forestland held over 10 days last month. Competitors follow the same message delivery routes traced by Ghengis Khan more than 800 years ago, stopping every 25 miles at designated stations, called Urtuus, so they can exchange their horse...

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Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Kate Baldino and Maria Muzzio Are Looking Forward to a Fun Young Rider Finale in Italy - Full Article

by Molly Sorge|Jump Media | Sep 17, 2019, 3:02 PM EST
Photo: Mark Baldino

Four years ago, Kate Baldino and Maria Muzzio were 17-year-old first-timers on the U.S. team at the FEI Endurance World Championships for Young Riders and Juniors. This year, they’re headed to Pisa, Italy, for the 2019 edition of the championships as good friends looking forward to their last competition as Young Riders.

In June, Kate, from Marietta, Ga., and Maria, from Clifton, Va., took part in the United States Equestrian Federation Mandatory Training and Evaluation Session for the 2019 U.S. Endurance Young Rider Team, and the U.S. Chef d’Equipe Mark Dial paired them up for the mock ride. Their mounts, Arabian geldings Traction and Landroval, were both bred by Dr. Tom Sayvetz and worked well together. “They went perfectly together,” Maria said. “Sometimes when you put horses together, there might be some ear-pinning or problems, but they went down the trail together with their ears perked, happy as could be.

“Kate and I really bonded in 2015 at the World Championships, and it’s cool that we’re doing our last Young Rider ride together,” Maria noted. “It’s fun that now we’re the two older girls, the role models for the younger ones...”

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Cambodia: Kingdom’s equestrians ramp up SEA Games prep - Full Article

September 18 2019
Ismail Vorajee / Khmer Times

The Cambodian Equestrian Federation have the SEA Games on their mind and are ramping up preparations ahead of the December showpiece.

The Federation hosted an Endurance competition last Thursday, as part of an initiative to help develop riders from very young ages to prepare for the trials of international competition.

The Endurance Event, at distances of 20kms and 40kms, was held in Kompong Chnang province at Rithysen Club (a big thanks to Mr Kao Vannarin club owner). Twelve riders took part, 10 of whom were young to junior riders from the national team.

“We are trying to do this event every 6 weeks as this is so important to help develop our youth in the sport,” explained Mona Tep, President of the Cambodian Equestrian Federation.

The twelve riders started their journey at 3.30 am, mostly aged just 13-15 years old, and from the national reserve...

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Mongolia: Gobi Desert Cup 2019 - Full Article

15th September 2019
Race Report made with the assistance of Heather Wallace
Photo credit: Gobi Desert Cup / Heather Wallace

Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. 6 September 2019. 21 international riders with a thirst for adventure and desire to ride a Mongolian horse 480 kilometers met for the first time in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. This was the start of their life-changing experience.

To live like a nomad, immerse themselves in the culture, and ride six Mongolian horses over six days across the eastern reaches of the vast country all while supporting the Mongolian Horse and Nomad Foundation was a dream come true for all.

The annual event brings together riders of all disciplines in a multi-day points-based endurance race beginning in the Khentii Province, the birthplace of infamous horseman Ghenghis Khan. The participants have two days to experience a taste of nomadic life, learn to ride a native and semi-wild horse, and have two introductory rides of approximately ten kilometers, all this under the guidance of the officials, veterinarians, and local horse trainers.

160 horses were trained and conditioned for this year’s event, a huge number to manage for three months. Each horse trainer was assigned a horse line of 10-15 horses, some their own and others from local families who support the event and are paid for the use of their animals.

On Friday, August 30th the participants from seven countries and six continents began their race across the steppe and competed both individually as well as in teams...

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Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Malaysian Riders' Target set for Italian job - Full Article

By Fadhli Ishak - September 16, 2019

A TOP-FIVE target has been set for the national riders for the FEI World Endurance Championships for Young Riders and Juniors, which starts on Wednesday, in Italy.

The team, comprising Faris Haikal Hassan Sa'ari, Aimin Azfar Nazulki, Nur Qasrina Amani Zakaria and Yusuf Luqman Zakaria, left for Under-21 competition in San Rossore, Italy, yesterday.

Team manager Mohamad Din Mat said if all goes smoothly a top-five finish in the team category will be achievable.

“The race will be split into four phases, and there will be a veterinary inspection after each phase.

“The first inspection will be done after 40km. The second (inspection) is after the next 33km, the third after another 27km and the final inspection at the end of the race,” said Mohamad yesterday.

“During the inspections, the horses’ physical condition will be examined. Horses need to pass each inspection to complete the race.

“It is thus important for our riders to know when they can push their horses during the race. Otherwise, they may risk being eliminated.

“We will be using the same horses as we did in France recently and they should arrive in San Rossore today (yesterday) from France..."

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Bahrain ready for world endurance challenge - Full Article

17 Setember 2019

The Royal Bahrain Endurance Team is taking part in the FEI Endurance World Championship for Young Riders and Juniors, which opened yesterday in Italy.

Riders from the UAE and other countries are also taking part in the 120-kilometre race at Pisa, Italy. An exhibition showcasing different teams is being held on the sidelines of the event...

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Monday, September 16, 2019

Qatari riders deliver sterling performance - Full Article

16 September 2019

The Peninsula
Doha: Three riders and horses from the Endurance Department of Al Shaqab, member of Qatar Foundation, delivered a sterling performance at the prestigious Endurance Equestre Monpazier event recently held in France.

As a result, the successful horses have qualified to participate in the higher categories of Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI) races that would eventually qualify them for next year’s Endurance World Cup.

Al Shaqab’s Sultan Salim Al Shamousi, astride RV Sultan, and Khalid Sanad Al Nuaimi, riding IFO LR Polino, competed successfully in the CEI2* 125km while Marine Faucon, on CA’Saddam Al Shaqab, completed the CEI1* 80km race.

The results of these marathon horses and their riders have come at the peak of the international endurance horse racing season...

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Thursday, September 12, 2019

Gruver, Texas man recounts racing in Mongol Derby 2019 - Full Story

by Tiffany LesterWednesday, September 11th 2019

GRUVER, Texas — The Mongol Derby is known as the world's longest and toughest horse race. One Texas Panhandle man found that out first-hand when he competed in this year's race. Frank Winters, 57, of Gruver, told ABC 7 News Wednesday afternoon that he grew up riding horses and has always been fascinated by Mongolia.

“When I was about 14, I read a book and it talked about the Mongolian Steppe and in that book the hero went across that part of Asia and ever since then I've been intrigued with the wide open spaces in Mongolia,” Winters said.

In 2018, Winters read about someone competing in the Mongol Derby in the American Quarter Horse magazine. The Adventurist hosts the event every year.

“I looked it up and it was going on so, I started tracking it, started watching it. So, I was hooked on this,” Winters said...

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Wednesday, September 11, 2019

France's Endurance Family - Full Story

French athlete Julien Lafaure, a champion athlete and trainer, tells us about the unique wonders of Endurance horses...

12 September 2019

Endurance is all about the relationship and trust between horse and human as the two courageously race together for kilometre after kilometre and hour after hour.

It is arguably the most physically and mentally challenging of all equestrian disciplines, with competitors racing for up to 160km in major competitions, battling tough terrain and the elements for perhaps up to nine hours.

Julien Lafaure knows all about that special relationship, having risen to become one of France’s best Endurance athletes while also breeding horses that have enjoyed great success.

And he also knows the importance of comradeship among human athletes in this discipline, being a member of one of Europe’s most notable Endurance families. His father, Jean Noel Lafaure, and siblings, Morgane and Roman, have all represented France in international competitions, with the latter having achieved a Team silver medal in the recent FEI European Endurance Championships in England...

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Ex-amateur jockey takes on 'wildest horserace on Earth' to raise funds for IJF - Full Story

'Committing to the race and raising money for the IJF has reminded me of how exciting the industry is'

By Matt Butler
6:15PM, SEP 10 2019

Former amateur jockey Otto Hopkins-Fagan is raising money for the Injured Jockeys Fund (IJF) by tackling the "wildest horserace on earth" in South Africa next month.

Race the Wild Coast, created in 2016 in the style of the famous Mongol Derby, lasts five days taking in 350 kilometres and featuring 33 river crossings.

Hopkins-Fagan, 27, worked for trainers including Sir Mark Prescott, David Elsworth, Henrietta Knight and Tom George before retiring from the saddle due to injury and weight issues.

Dubbed the "wildest horserace on earth" by race organisers, Race the Wild Coast begins on October 22 with participants setting off from Port Edward and heading along the eastern seaboard of South Africa to the finish line in Kei Mouth...

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Spain: Sabotage blamed for positive drug test in Endurance horse - Full Article

September 11, 2019

An Endurance rider from Spain whose horse tested positive for a controlled medication blames sabotage, but says he cannot prove it.

Miguel Vila Ubach was suspended for six months and fined 3000 Swiss francs over the drugs breach. He was ordered to contribute a further 1500 francs towards the cost of the case, heard by the FEI Tribunal.

Ubach had ridden TBO Joy in a CEI3* 160km ride at Fontainebleau, France, on March 30 last year.

TBO Joy was selected for testing and returned a positive urine test for salbutamol, a bronchodilator used in the treatment of inflammatory airway disease. It is classified as a controlled medication under the FEI’s anti-doping regulations.

Ubach was advised of the drugs breach through the Spanish Equestrian Federation.

He explained to the tribunal that the horse was usually stabled in a private stable. TBO Joy has always been “in perfect condition” without any respiratory problems or allergies.

He talked of a 30-year involvement in endurance, and said he had never used salbutamol in his entire career for any of his horses...

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Sunday, September 08, 2019

From the Eastern Shore to East Asia - Full Article

September 8 2019

EASTON — Eastern Shore native Rachel Roman, an avid equestrian, wanted a riding journey unlike any other she has participated before, and the Mongol Derby gave her the opportunity of a lifetime.

“I got to witness the rolling steppe with no trees, marshy bogs, jagged mountains, the mini gobi (desert plateau), and some forested mountain areas that made you think you were in Switzerland,” said Roman.

Before participating in the grueling derby, Roman spent her entire life riding, training, competing and caring for horses. When she discovered what the Mongol Derby was and what it entailed: “horses, wilderness and adventure,” she said. She vied for a chance to compete, along with hundreds of applicants from around the world...

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Saturday, September 07, 2019

Great Britain's Jeni Gilbert Talks Endurance with Everything Horse - Full Story


In this article we talk to HorseHage & Mollichaff-sponsored endurance rider, Jeni Gilbert, who is based in West Yorkshire, to find out how she became involved in the sport of endurance. Jeni is a former Novice Champion, Endurance GB Senior and Supreme Champion (2007, 2011) and winner of several other titles. She competes on her Connemara, Ballydoolagh Alfie, who has now completed more than 2300km in 48 competitions in his five year endurance career – an impressive feat for a native breed in a discipline that is dominated with Arab horses.

When and how did you first discover your love of riding?

I started riding as a youngster but due to moving around a lot it was difficult to continue so it was in the background until middle age arrived with the right job, money and time! I started riding at a riding school with lots of other adults and we had a great time, then one by one we bought our own horses.

How did you first get involved with endurance?

I started endurance riding in the early 80’s, spurred on my reading about the Golden Horseshoe Ride on Exmoor and being fully aware I wasn’t brave or talented enough for jumping and dressage. However, we did like riding for hours and exploring. I could also map read!...

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Friday, September 06, 2019

Seeing the world on horseback - Full Article


South African Wiesman Nels wears many hats. Not only is he the owner of Moolmanshoek Private Game Reserve in Ficksburg, but he also loves “travelling on a horse.”

The 40-year-old recently participated in Mongol Derby, known as the world’s longest and toughest horse race.

The course started south-west of Arvaikheer in Mongolia and ended north of Jargalthaan in Mongolia. At 1000km, the race is believed to be the toughest test on the planet for equestrian endurance riders...

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Great Britain, Talking Horses: BHA must respond over trainer's doping suspension - Full Story

Chris Cook
Thu 5 Sep 2019

The Newmarket-based Ismail Mohammed has been suspended from endurance racing for two years by the FEI

Readers may be surprised to learn that bans imposed on people by one horsey sport are not automatically reciprocated by others. Whether this situation should be allowed to continue has become a pressing one for the British Horseracing Authority, following the news that Ismail Mohammed, a trainer based in Newmarket, has been suspended from endurance racing for two years over a doping offence involving testosterone.

In a decision reached last month by the International Equestrian Federation (FEI), Mohammed was disciplined, along with one other, for a positive test taken from the horse Shaddad at an event in Suffolk last year. The test found 35 nanograms of the anabolic steroid per millilitre of urine taken from the horse, compared to the FEI’s threshold of 20ng. The FEI described testosterone as “one of the most old-school anabolic steroids, which was known to be used in the build-up period for competitions in Endurance”...

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Thursday, September 05, 2019

Meet the Western Australians who took on the Mongol Derby, the world's toughest horse race - Full Article

September 4 2019
By Ellie Honeybone

It is known as the longest and toughest horse race on Earth, but for two Western Australians who just returned from competing in the Mongol Derby, it was one of the best experiences of their lives.

Jesse Byrne and Sarah Brown finished third in a field of 40 riders after racing across 1,000 kilometres of vast Mongolian landscapes mounted on semi-wild racing ponies.

The annual adventure race follows the world's first long-distance postal transmission route, laid down by Genghis Khan in 1224.

Sturdy Mongolian horses, used to life on the steppes where temperatures range from minus 40 degrees Celsius in winter to 30 degrees Celsius in summer, carry the entrants on the course.

The object of the event is to ride a series of horses along the route, swapping your mount every 40 kilometres at stations crewed by teams of veterinarians.

It is not a challenge for the faint-hearted but the Aussie duo has returned home in one piece with just a couple of sore knees between them...

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Australia: WERI Wicked Wheatbelt Challenge - Full Article

1 September 2019
Race Report made with the assistance of Cara Allan

Merredin WA, Australia. Saturday 17 August 2019. The rejuvenation of CEI competition in Western Australia was brought about by the Acharon Challenge, held in Collie in May last year.

his was the first international (CEI) ride held in Western Australia for five years; a tribute to the late West Coast Acharon (affectionately known as Acky), the stallion sadly laid to rest three years ago. Last year’s ride was the preamble for the recent CEI2* event, hosted by the Wheatbelt Endurance Riders Incorporation (WERI) and held in Merredin over the weekend of the 17 August 2019...

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Wednesday, September 04, 2019

Maktoum Family Endurance Horse Trainer Banned for Steroids Offence - Full Article

Ismail Mohammed, a longstanding endurance trainer for the Maktoum family has received a two-year suspension for a banned steroids offence involving Shaddad.

By: Pippa Cuckson | September 3 2019

One of the Maktoum family’s longest standing trainers has been suspended for two years by the FEI for a banned steroids offence involving Shaddad, who was the world number-one ranked endurance horse at the time.

Ismail Mohammed, 56, was also fined 7,500 Swiss francs and ordered to pay 2,500 Swiss francs towards costs. The same suspension, fine and costs order was handed down to Shaddad’s rider Saeed Mohd Khalifa Al Mehairi, 22. The suspensions are backdated to take account of provisional suspensions already served, meaning the pair are ineligible to compete in FEI through August 2020.

The testosterone positive was returned on July 13, 2018, at a Maktoum-sponsored FEI ride at Euston Park, UK. The gelding Shaddad is owned by MRM, the premier endurance stable of Dubai ruler Sheikh Mohammed al Maktoum.

Ismail Mohammed has previous anti-doping violations in both endurance and horse racing. He blamed this latest incident on accidental “contamination” by the horse’s groom on the day, Saleem Khan, who was using a cream containing testosterone to treat muscle soreness on his own shoulders. Khan had worked “diligently” for MRM six years but on this occasion failed to advise MRM management he was using the cream...

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Tuesday, September 03, 2019

St. Patrick’s Coast Endurance Ride 2019 – Ireland’s Emerald Jewel of Endurance and Pleasure Riding - Full Article

By Bree Rutledge - September 3, 2019

THE most eagerly anticipated equestrian event of the year is coming up soon and has been on many riders’ minds and training programmes. The annual St. Patrick’s Coast Endurance Ride is the perfect horse-riding event, whether you are an avid eventer, dressage diva or someone who enjoys exploring the glorious countryside on horseback! Now in its sixth year, this event hosted by the Irish Long Distance Riding Association (ILDRA), has become established as Ireland’s premier endurance event offering stunning off-road riding in the scenic County Down landscape.

On Saturday, September 7, the ride will commence at the excellent venue of Downpatrick racecourse, offering ample parking and on site toilets. The ride meanders across the rolling drumlins of County Down through numerous fields before reaching the East Down Gallops...

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Fines, bans imposed over testosterone level in Endurance horse in Britain - Full Article

September 3, 2019

Excessive testosterone levels found in an Endurance horse who competed over 160km in a contest at Euston Park, England, have result in both the rider and trainer being fined and banned by the FEI Tribunal.

The rider, Saeed Mohammed Khalifa Al Mehairi, who is registered with the United Arab Emirates, rode UAE-registered Shaddad in the CEI3* 160km ride held at the venue on July 13 last year.

Shaddad, a gelding, had blood and urine samples taken for testing. Analysis revealed the presence of testosterone in the urine sample. The internationally agreed threshold for free and conjugated testosterone in a gelding’s urine is 20 nanograms per millilitre.

Shaddad’s concentration of testosterone was found to be 35 nanograms per millilitre...

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Monday, September 02, 2019

Better welfare outcomes seen in domestic-level endurance - full article

August 30, 2019

Endurance rides ridden at slower speeds over technically challenging terrain have fewer eliminations and better horse welfare outcomes, the authors of a New Zealand study have found.

Massey University researcher Kylie Legg and her colleagues, writing in the open-access journal Animals, noted that international media recently raised awareness around horse welfare during endurance competitions.

However, much of this attention has been focused on international-level FEI competitions.

Little, they said, is known about domestic-level competitions and their risk factors for elimination...

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Thursday, August 29, 2019

Long distance riders take to Cariboo trails

Quesnel Cariboo Observer
Long-distance horseback riders from all corners of the province made the Hangman Springs Trails their home this weekend (Aug. 24-25) while competing in the Quesnel Canter endurance race.

Almost 70 endurance horse racers, ranging in age from 10 to 75, took their steeds along a series of looped trails in the Cariboo wilderness just north of Bouchie Lake.

Some of the contestants rode up to 50 miles a day, while others opted for fun rides of 12.4 miles.

Welfare of the animals is of utmost importance to the organizers as well as the competitors.

If the horse is not deemed to be in tip-top shape, the contestant cannot win the race.

The day before the ride, the horses come in and are pre-vetted to ensure that they are sound to ride, and for each loop that a rider and their horse completes, there is a detailed vet checkup to ensure the animal is capable of running the next leg of the race.

“We have two vets here and a treatment vet on call,” says co-organizer Erin Wilde.

She adds the number of vets is dependent on the amount of riders that take part.

“And each vet has a scribe, so it’s all documented and they have a working baseline of the horse’s condition.”

The goal of the sport is to finish quickly with your horse in excellent shape.

“A big part of it is being a team with your animal,” says Cambria Volonte, who came to Quesnel from Bridgelake to race on her horse, Toby.

“You want to make sure that they come in healthy and strong and tired. We always say it’s a healthy horse if it will eat, drink, pee and poo on the trail, so you’re watching all those things.”

The sport of endurance riding is an old one that is still in practice in many places throughout North America, the Middle East and Europe.

One of the most famous races is the Tevis Cup, which is a 100-mile race that follows the coastline of California. This year’s competition was won by an 18-year-old girl on a horse her family had acquired for free off of an ad they had seen on Craigslist.

While the Hangman Springs Trails are not quite the same, the consensus among organizers and riders was the course was a technical one.

“There’s some road riding, but the majority of it is double track,” says Wilde.

“There’s roots, there’s rocks, there’s some mud, and there’s the elevation gain. Our 50-mile riders have climbed an average of 2,000 feet and descended 2,000 feet in one loop, and both the other two loops are about an 1,800-foot elevation gain, so it’s a little hard on the horses.”

She adds the best breed for the contests are often Arabians, as they are known for their ability to recover quickly.

“Vets are looking at horses’ CRI [cardiac recovery index], so you take the horse’s resting heart rate and you ask them to trot down to a certain distance and come back and measure it again, and the average will give you where they’re at metabolically,” says Wilde. “Typically, Arabians recover a lot faster than a lot of different breeds.”

The Quesnel Canter was an Endurance Riders Association of B.C. race. There are about a dozen other races being held by the organization across the province.

For riders like Wilde, there is plenty of enjoyment to be had in checking out new trails.

“I love exploring new terrain,” she says, adding the people and the campsites also add to a sense of community among riders.

“We’re all here because we love horses. The biggest thing is exploring and finding new trails and seeing what our horses can do.”

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Bucket List Ride: Meg Sleeper Checks off the Quilty

August 20 2019
by Merri

When you see her stats: over 15,000 AERC miles, being a member of the USA squad that attended every World Endurance Championship from 2004-2016 (Dubai, Germany, Malaysia, USA, Great Britain, France, Slovakia), finishes and medals in multiple World and Pan American Championships, AERC Championship and National Best Condition titles, 2015 nomination by the Arabian Jockey Club for the HH Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies International Award in Endurance, and the 2017 Maggie Price award for excellence in Endurance - just to name a few accomplishments - the only thing surprising is that Meg Sleeper just rode in Australia for the first time this year.

Crossing the ocean to set foot and ride on her final continent (not counting Antarctica “I don’t think there are any rides there”), Meg - well known in the USA and around the world for riding her highly successful homebred endurance Arabians - completed the 100-mile Tom Quilty, Australia’s premiere 100-mile ride, on July 13, in Imbil, Queensland.

Her mount was Jay Randle’s Follydown Gai Emerald, a 21-year-old mare by Gai General X Formosa Park Faberge. The mare - the oldest horse in this year’s Quilty - had previously completed the Quilty in 2013 and 2015. Meg said, “I got to ride her two days before the Quilty when I got to the farm. She was great. She definitely thought she knew a lot more than I did. And she may have, I don’t know,” Meg laughed. “We did kind of come to terms in the ride, that I got to pick too. She actually accepted that very gracefully and she was simply fantastic all day. She was very experienced. She’s packed tons of kids around on different rides. She was just really professional and totally knew what she was doing.”

Seven of Jay’s Splendacrest endurance horses started the Quilty, with five finishing. Numerous ‘students’ of Jay’s accompanied the horses to ride and crew. “Jay has quite an amazing program, bringing kids along, from basic beginner riding to 100 mile rides. It was really fabulous just watching and meeting her and all the kids.” 

299 horses and riders lined up at the starting line of the Quilty at midnight. Why the midnight starting time, common in Australia and New Zealand for 100 milers? “Because it is so much fun starting in the dark on a fresh horse!” joked Aussie endurance rider Linda Tanian. But seriously. “It is about utilising cooler weather conditions, tradition, [and] getting finished in daylight if possible,” Linda said, “as it can be mentally tougher going into the dark when both rider and horse are getting tired.”

Meg rode “Emma” at what she felt was a very easy moderate pace throughout the Quilty. “The mare felt really strong, but I had never ridden her before. So I ended up deciding partway through the ride that if we’re walking down a hill - there was a lot of elevation change in the ride - I’m just going to get off and walk her. And I let her eat as we went along.

“I hadn’t really realized we were pretty competitive. We weren’t anywhere near the front, but it was interesting, because I came in thinking, wow, I just had this really mellow lovely day; I got to see beautiful birds, the trail was gorgeous, and it was impossible for me to tell who was in what weight division. That’s not why I was there, I didn’t particularly care that much anyway. 

“Coming in on that last loop, another rider asked me, ‘How many more loops do you have?’ I said I was on my last loop. And he said ‘Oh, wow, I hope someday I can finish in the daylight.’ 

“And I suddenly felt so lucky! I’d had a great day, it just felt very peaceful and comfortable.”

Meg and Emma did finish in the daylight, after just under 14 hours of riding, around 50th overall (of 194 finishers), and 23rd in the middleweight division. Five of the seven Splendacrest horses finished the Quilty, and Emma was the toast of the stable. 

Meg had high praise for the facilities at Sterling’s Crossing Endurance Complex, built by long-time endurance rider Matthew Sample three years ago. The premises have a 60m x 40m fully lit, undercover area; a large pavilion for horse exams and jogging; permanent overnight camping sites; air-conditioned amenities block with toilets and showers; bathrooms with radiant floor heating; large, level, well-maintained and grassy outdoor areas; and direct access to some of Australia’s most desirable forestry trails.

Meg ranks the Quilty as one of the tougher 100-mile rides she’s done - and one of the most enjoyable. “The ride was amazing on so many levels. One thing I have always found special about international riding is learning how similar we all are and how friendly everyone is on trail.

“Everybody, all day, whoever you passed, would say, ‘Good luck to you.’ It was really striking to me how encouraging everybody was.”

When asked what’s next on her Bucket List, Meg indicates the horizon is limitless. “What i’m trying to do is, any opportunity that comes, I’m trying to take it,” she said. “That’s my goal. 

“There are always some rides that you just go - wow - that was a rough day. But I learn something from every ride, and the people are always great wherever I go. I just love going different places, and this one was definitely one of the most special things that I’ve ever done.”

Belgium: Cooling gel saw Endurance horse fail two drug tests; rider not at fault - Full Article November 14, 2019 A Belgium-registered rider whose horse tested positive for an anti-in...