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National Capital at Equestrian Park, 14 September 2008

More than one hundred riders and horses from the Canberra region and far beyond took part in the National Capital Ride weekend endurance carnival on 13 & 14 September.

A trainer and social ride were offered on Saturday as well as a trainer, social ride and the main ride on Sunday.

Due to the need to divert around the massive arboretum being constructed in part of the previously burnt out forest along the Bicentennial National Horse Trail, the main ride turned out to be 84 km with quite a few undulations. For the same reason, the Saturday trainer became 39 km and it was decided to also use this course for the Sunday trainer.

There were some issues for the ride committee. First up, the local electricity company sent six trucks to the ride base to put up new power poles – right next to the yards and canteen. After some 'argy-bargy' they agreed to do one pole and leave. Next came notification that the insurance provisions for the ride base had changed and contrary to advice received the previous day, no horses were allowed in portable yards except in one area. Not good news for people who had already set up camp!

Despite the problems, the [Saturday] trainer and social ride went ahead on a perfect albeit very warm afternoon. Two riders were still out when it became dark as they had decided to walk home, but were found safe and sound. The weather changed dramatically, however, and at 1.00 am a thunderstorm crashed overhead – so loud it set off car alarms in nearby suburbs. By the time the main ride started at 6.00 am the skies had cleared, but the wind soon picked up and the clouds and rain returned. Riders in the [Sunday] trainer and social ride, as well as those in the main ride, were subjected to a hail storm and rain before the sun came out again!

Rachel Reid and Franshar Park K Shar, National Capital ride 2008, middleweight winner and best conditioned
Rachel Reid and Shar

The 84 km ride was won convincingly by Rachel Reid on Franshar Park K Shar in a time of 5:01. Equal second were Carol Major and Clare Feary with a time of 5:42. FP K Shar, owned by local rider Virginia Dodson, won best conditioned.

The heavyweight winner was Des Roots, riding Aboo – who also got best conditioned – with a time of 6:01. Second was Con Katrivessis on Marcon Ios Conquero, followed in equal third place by Wayne Johnson on Aloha Divinityand Len Derkacz on Ramal Torryburn. Eva Pellizari on Razorback Blue Kakadu in 6:08 was first lightweight and best conditioned, ahead of Shelly Ison on Valinor Park Opaland Kerry Walker on Bradali Nhadya.

The junior division was won by local, Jeremy Banwell, on his mother Cathy's horse Lac-la-Biche Talique, closely followed by Emma Smith on Kintamani Silver Belle and Talea Hasko-Stewart on Blake's Heaven Ventura. Emma won best conditioned with Kintamani Silver Belle while Jeremy was awarded the Bruce Neal Junior Encouragement Award, a perpetual trophy donated by Bob and Jan Neal of Wybalena Lodge in memory of their late son. Read more about the Bruce Neal trophy

The best conditioned winners in each division received beautiful embroidered rugs donated by Heidi and Mark Walton of Madgwick Lodge and EquiMad, who also donated the fist prizes. Other prizes were donated by Saddleworld, Phillip (ACT), Horsewear House, Mitchell and Powell's Stockfeeds.

Thanks to the small band of helpers who enabled us to put on these rides, which were certainly appreciated by many first time riders in the trainers and social rides, as well as the endurance riders. See full ride results for 2008

Fia Hasko-Stewart, ACTERA President
Gertraud Norton, Ride Secretary

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