It's been heating up on RIDECAMP again. I honestly see a lot of truth in both sides of the issue of combining LD miles with Endurance miles. But! If the AERC wished to keep Endurance pristine they will have to change a few things.
* Quit awarding placements and accumulated mileage in LD so that folks do not become stuck there for whatever reason (liking to race the shorter distance, health problems of horse/rider, blah blah blah reason).
* Make LD rides what they were initially meant to be which would be TRAINING rides, and put a time window on the ride such as you see in CTR to "teach" a sane pace to new riders and new horses in the sport, or to bring back a rehabbing horse.
*Set limits on how many successful completions an LD horse/rider team can have before they are mandated to attempt a longer distance.
Then...watch the revenues drop.
Break the bank.
So what is reasonable to encourage LD riders to move on up? To stick with the sport in a longer venue? My answer to this is simple and long timers probably wouldn't like it. Instead of having columns that read LD, Endurance, 100's...change those categories to:
TRAINING LEVEL (encompassing 15, 20, 25,30, 35 miles). Require a horse/rider team to successfully (via some serious real life vet scores) to complete each level prior to moving up to the next. Meaning if you can't complete a 25 mile with an overall A- average then you won't move up to 35 until you do. Thus making the rider focus on the well-being of the horse. Only award given is BEST CONDITION, and completion awards to those ready to move on up to the next level. that would make perfect sense starting new people in the sport. Once the horse/rider successfully completes a 35 they are ready/mandated to move up to the next level which would be INTERMEDIATE (50, 65, 75 miles). Or they can start a new horse and start over.
INTERMEDIATE: (50, 65, 75 miles) Once a horse or rider successfully enters Intermediate they are considered an open rider and can accumulate points on an open horse (has been through training level). Once a team has completed all three levels of intermediate they are free to ride ADVANCED or keep doing what they are doing...
ADVANCED: 100 miles in a day, Multi-day 50's (3 or more days) on the same horse.
A ribbon or certificate awarded for each mileage pinnacle, an award as the team advances through the levels.
There! The problems of the world are solved in 3 easy columns.
Something tells me if people can't cope with LD miles being counted in the totals column...my plan for fixing the scoring in 3 easy steps will NEVER happen *LOL*.
We need to spend our energy PROMOTING the sport. Really.
Arrrrrrgh....I need more coffee (and more "horse" time). ~ E.G.
Discipline: LD/Endurance, CMO, Trail Rider, Cartoonist, Writer, Co-Director/ Green Bean Endurance
Favorite Links for training, gear, and memberships!
- National Association of Competitive Mounted Orienteering
- HOW TO CMO
- What is CMO?
- Old Dominion Endurance Rides
- Renegade Hoof Boots
- Riding vs. Racing a discussion with the Duck.
- Trumbull Mountain's INTRO TO ENDURANCE RIDING
- Principles of Conditioning
- Conditioning the endurance horse by SERA
- Short Article: Feeding & Training the Endurance Horse
- Feeding the Endurance Horse, Swedish Author
- Preventing Dehydration In the Endurance Horse, Ontario Competitive Trail Riding Association
- Jim Holland's fantastic training links here!
- South Eastern Distance Rider's Association