Cambrian-news.co.uk - Full Story
17 July 2013
WITH some experience of the equestrian world, I thought I had a good idea what endurance riding was all about, but an afternoon at Trawsgoed Farm near Abermagwr showed me I had a lot to learn.
Beth Jones, secretary of the mid and north Wales branch of endurance Great Britain, which is based at the farm, had just finished marking the start and finish of the 22km route when she told me that endurance is more than just a long hack.
“Competitive rides start at around 30km, for which you’d be hoping to ride at around 12km per hour,” Beth explained.
“When you turn up at the ride, you have to present your horse or pony to the vet, who will carry out a general health check.
“On long rides, there will also be a veterinary check up in the middle of the ride.
“Then when you finish, you have to present your horse to the vet again, where the horses heart rate must be below 64 beats per minute (BPM) in order to get a completion.”
This requires careful calculation by the ridealtr - you can’t than just aim to complete the course as quickly as possible.
Riders set off from the yard at a speedy trot, but the event I took part in was just a pleasure ride.
Experienced endurance riders Sally and Wendy invite me to join them.
I’m riding Beth’s horse Cisco.
She’s 22 and has been taking part in endurance rides for a number of years.
We set off from the yard and before I know it we’re trotting down the farm track and into the forestry.
The route is marked with orange ribbons tied to trees, hedges and fences, as well as arrows on the ground...
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