ACT Endurance Riders Association
National Capital Kambah – 19 September 2010
The saying 'it never rains but it pours' rang true in the ACT this year, as in many parts of NSW. In the past decade we have had to cancel endurance rides because of fires and drought, but this time we were left with the prospect of cancelling because record September rain turned our traditional ride base into a potential bog.
With a week to go, the decision was made to try to move to ride to a new base. Kambah Pony Club was kind enough to allow us to use their grounds – even though their annual gymkhana was on the following week. After pleading and promises to the Canberra parks authorities, we also got approval to use the Bicentennial National Trail and other local trails and with a great deal of last minute work, the ride was able to go ahead.
This was a good result for 110 riders – 54 in the 80 km ride and 56 in the 38 and 20 km rides – who were rewarded with great riding weather, beautiful views and a great track, with only a few small stretches of mud. With a new course and new helpers, there was a mistake in directions on the second leg but as the course consisted of two loops, some riders simply did the loops in reverse order and no harm was done.
The ride was won by Lindsay Hine on Harmere Kalila in 4h 21m, closely followed by first junior Maddison Wade on Trigger (4h 23m) and first heavyweight Heidi Wade (4h 29m). Lightweight winner was Sally Fenner on Cherox Aladdin in 4h 43m, tying with Scott Davenport (second heavyweight). Best conditioned awards were won by Lindsey Hine, Heidi Wade, Maddison Wade and Jodi Dewick on Blake's Heaven Dubonnet in lightweight.
The Canberra region Arabian society, Arabs' Inc., provided trophies for the first registered purebred Arabian (Cherox Aladdin) and part bred Arabian (Harmere Kalila).
The Bruce Neal Encouragement Award for a junior rider was won by Canberra girl Olivia de Gruchy who gained her endurance rider status on Jupiter Mikhena.
Happily, the pony club grounds were fine for the gymkhana the following week and ACT Parks had no complaints either.
ACT Endurance Riders Association is a small club and a huge thanks should go to everyone who turned up to help (including some who had never attended an endurance ride before), family members and even neighbours who got roped in to fill gaps, as well as our core members (Roz Edmunds on crutches) who work so hard to get our rides up and running. Every one of you made a difference! A big thank you also to Chief Steward Tom McCormack, cheerful and adept as always at problem solving, head vet Steve Roberts and to our sponsors: Canberra Motor Works (Ray Spence); Corkhill Bros; Littlebanks Arabians; Kevin and Sarah Kelly; Cypress Lodge (rope bridles); CRT Rural Supplies Mitchell; Arabs Inc.; Bendora Arabians; Horseland Canberra; Powell's Stockfeeds; Saddleworld; The Chaffman; Kerrana Stockhorses; and Zemzem Arabians.