October Quicksilver Quips

President's Message - October 2001

Hi there!

Once again our members have distinguished themselves!  I would say we are amongst the elite in endurance with Heather and Red winning and five of our team finishing the Pan Am Championship in Vermont.  What a way to go!!! Was it true that Red was shipped via UPS?  Didn't know they accepted cargo of that size.

We have just had a really great presentation by horsetrainer Ramona Koch for the September Quicksilver meeting which was held at Pat and Jay McKendry's ranch in Morgan Hill.  Both Cathy Kauer and Kathy Mayeda brought inexperienced horses for Ramona to work with in regards to accepting the bit, lowering their head and being head shy.  When it got a little too dark to continue (Have you noticed it's getting dark earlier AGAIN!) we adjourned to eat a nice dinner outdoors.  Thanks, Cathy, you did a wonderful job of setting this up for us.

Well, it's official!  We are planning a Spring Quicksilver Classic Endurance Ride on May 18, which is the old Castle Rock Ride date.  This means we will be having both a spring and fall ride the way we used to a few years back. Our thoughts are to have one be a traditional ride, the other a bit different.  An example of different would be our upcoming ride at Coe Park.

A huge change is taking place in our club.  Julie Suhr who has been doing our newsletter for the last nine (9!!!) years has resigned her duties with this issue.  She has too many other interests and not enough time.  Does
this sound familiar?  Julie has done such an absolutely outstanding job that it's going to require several of our members in an attempt at taking her place.  Wonderful job, Julie!  Thank you.
 

      'til next time,

                            Diane

                       OCTOBER 2001

 October 6  COMSTOCK ARABIAN ASSOC., 25/50
       John Mayeroff  775-677-9775

   October 6   DEL VALLE VULTURE VENTURE 25/50
       Jane Cloud 209-668-4643

   October 10               QUICKSILVER MEETING
       Connell & Kay Allison's home -
       Board 6:30 pm.  General 7:30 pm.
 
   October 13    LAKE SONOMA 50
       Jennifer Niehaus 707-894-3369

   OCTOBER 20 QUICKSILVER FALL CLASSIC  30/50
       Steve Lenheim  408-997-0368 Nights

   October 27 & 28 BROTHEL TO BROTHEL  & I & II  60/30/50
       Heidi Siegel  775-575-2358

Minutes of the Board of Directors Meeting

BOARD  MEETING:    August 31, 2001
 TIME IN:      6:30 PM  TIME OUT:  7:09 PM
 
 CALL TO ORDER:
 PRESENT: Diane Enderle, Jan Jeffers, Jackie Davidson, Mike Maul, Cathy Kauer, Judith Ogus and Steve Lenheim  (meeting was held at Steve's house, prior to the General Meeting, which was a Ride Planning Meeting).
 
 MINUTES OF LAST MEETING:  None given.
 SECRETARY'S REPORT:   None given.
  PRESIDENT'S REPORT:  None given.
 CORRESPONDENCE:  None to review.
 TREASURER'S REPORT:    None given.
 COMMITTEE REPORTS:
 MEMBERSHIP  COMMITTEE:  None given.
 
 PROGRAM  COMMITTEE :
 The September program is a training clinic with Ramona Koch.  The program will be held at Pat McKendry's in Morgan Hill.  Cathy and Judith will bring horses for the clinic. They may ask Kathy Mayeda if she wants to bring Drako.  The program will begin at 6:30 PM to maximize the amount of daylight we have. Dinner will be provided at the program, however if you wish to bring drinks, dessert or other potluck items to share, you are welcome to.
 
 Mike Maul said that Julie Suhr had suggested a phone tree to help inform QSER members without e-mail of the September program.
 
 GOODWILL COMMITTEE :  None given.
 
 TRAILS COMMITTEE :
 There will be a County Parks and Recreation Meeting all day on Saturday, 9/8/2001.  This meeting is meant to help the Steering Committee come up with a strategic plan for parks and trails. Maryben is presenting for Quicksilver.  Maryben had to prepare a position paper from QSER. We helped her outline several concerns, including trail access, trail safety (bikes, etc.), goodwill, and community education.
 
 RIDE COMMITTEE :
 Deferred to the 7:30 PM Ride Planning Meeting.  As a side note, we need volunteers to work the ride, and riders to ride the ride!
 
 AWARDS  COMMITTEE:  None given.
 
 NEWSLETTER  COMMITTEE:  The last month that Julie Suhr will be able to do the Quips is October, 2001.  We are looking for volunteers to take on the Quips.  The board discussed trying to do the Quips as a committee. Kay Allison also volunteered to participate.  The board also thought of asking members at the general meeting if they would be interested.
 
 OLD BUSINESS:     We discussed taking the Castle Rock ride date in May of 2002 (3rd Saturday in May). Trilby told Diane that she would be delighted to manage the ride. Trilby wants us to consider using AERC ride insurance for next year's rides rather than the one we have.  She states that AERC is about $110/ride compared to almost $1K for our present insurance. We will need lots of volunteers to pull this off, so if any members are interested in volunteering, please let a board member know!
 
 

We will still have our Fall, 2002 ride as well, so we will be managing 2 rides next year.  A motion
to take the Castle Rock date was made, seconded and passed.
 
NEW BUSINESS:    Connell and Kay Allison graciously offered their home for QSER meetings. The October meeting will be held on Wednesday, October 10th at Connell and Kay Allison's home, which is located at 6572 Camden Avenue, off Almaden Road.  The Board Meeting will be held at 6:30 and the General Meeting will be held at 7:30.

 ANNOUNCEMENTS:     None given.
 
 A motion to adjourn was called and seconded.  The Board meeting adjourned at  7:09 PM.
 
 
 GENERAL MEETING -   August 31, 2001
 TIME IN:  7:40  PM
 Ride Planning Meeting for October 20th Ride.
 
 The General Meeting was held at Steve Lenheim's home.  We spent the meeting going over the ride route, figuring out the volunteer jobs that will be needed, and discussing how we can ensure that we have adequate vet coverage.
 We have 3 vets for the ride, however, we discussed the possibility of trying to get a 4th.  The route is still being refined - it partially depends on the availability of water and also on trail conditions.  We will probably have another Ride Planning Meeting in September to hammer out final details.
 
 QSER's Fall Endurance Ride is at Henry Coe Park on Saturday, October 20,2001.  We need lots of helping hands to pull this off!  Steve will need volunteers to:

 * take water out to water stops (if you have a 4x4 truck, Steve wants to talk with you!)
  * drive an ambulance trailer (again, got 4x4?)
  * be vet secretaries
 ` * take P&R's at the vet checks and finish lines
  * fix and serve food
  * ...and many other exciting jobs
 
 Talk with Steve to sign up for these volunteer opportunities and many others.
 
 And don't forget -- we also need riders to actually *ride* the ride, so get out there and get ready for Coe Park on October 20th.  There will be a 30, and a "Lenheim 50" (we're still not quite sure what that means, but the route Steve mapped out sure looks like fun!).
 
  Respectfully submitted,
 
 Jackie Davidson, Secretary

QUICKSILVER ENDURANCE RIDERS
    BANK ACCOUNT BALANCE

   GENERAL ACCOUNT        $ 675.71
   RIDE ACCOUNT                  2532.35
   JUNIOR ACCOUNT              763.71
    TRAILS                                844.54

     Mike Sofens Report on the East Bay Benefit Ride

 It's been a rocky year and a half since returning to California, with terrible work schedules, horse injuries, bad luck...not nearly enough time to train, let alone compete.  We (my horse Nick and I) did get to do two 50's last year (Fireworks and Quicksilver), but nothing else.

This year, two freak injuries delayed our training start until April, so again, Fireworks was our first ride and we did it REALLY slow.  Since then, health and schedules have cooperated and so we were fortunate to be able to train hard and ride competitively in the East Bay 50 on Sept. 8.

This is one fun ride!  Apparently called Las Trampas and other names over the years, it was put on by Pacific South as a fund raiser.  Located in the hills surrounding Lake Chabot, the ride had lots of hill climbs and descents plus a lot of flat to really boogey on. I rode the entire ride with Cheryl Davidson and her very fast horse Victory, which might explain my first ever top ten finish since returning to California early last year.

Incredible weather was a key factor, allowing Cheryl and me to ride quite quickly during the cool and foggy morning hours, averaging nearly 10 mph for the first two loops (about 30 miles).  We then slowed down for the final two loops as the temperatures climbed to a very moderate 80 degrees with lots of shade on the trails, finishing only 15-20 minutes behind the first place finisher.

For ride results, I can barely remember what my rig looks like, so bear with me.  I do know that in the 50, Barry won first and BC, Sally came in a very close second, Cheryl was forth, I was fifth, Coy was sixth.   What?  You were expecting last names?   There were 28 starters in the 50 and 5 pulls. Two riders missed a turn and re-rode most of an entire loop, adding 10 miles to their ride, yet both completed.  In the 25, there were about 25 riders and I believe all completed, which was great news.

Jamie Kerr was head vet, Melissa Ribley and another vet assisted.  They used a "P&R Box" system, where once the rider felt their horse was at pulse (60 bpm for the 50's), they entered the box, got P&R'd and from there went directly to be vetted.  Since your hold time didn't start until passing the P&R, and you then had to vet, it seemed to make the process more efficient, once the volunteers and riders got the hang of it.  I like this way of doing vet checks and hope it will become more common, especially since it seems modeled after the FEI system.

There were spotters, number takers, volunteers, and water everywhere. Especially welcomed was a guy at a water stop about 35 miles into the ride with a giant tank of lemonade and he filled cups and handed them to us while we were saddled, all with a big smile and kind words.

This was a ride of concerns for me, and a confirmation of some adjustments in  training and equipment. Concerns - would Nick handle riding with a fast horse ok or would he go into race mode and be uncontrollable (he's an off-track arab and still loves to "chase"); were his saddle fit problems behind him; how deep was his conditioning base, was he really ready for a fast 50; was his recovery complete from a colic three weeks prior.  At the first hint of any trouble I was going to pull him, and the vet's were aware of this, but nothing showed up for the whole ride.

Adjustments - In an attempt to find a faster trot for Nick, I switched from an SR Enduro (which required a breast collar) to a Synergist (which I had discovered by accident - leaving it home - didn't).  With the Synergist I also got to use an elastic woolback girth which Nick clearly preferred to non-elastic ones.  I've switched to using plastic horse shoes - Hoof-Its - and I must say that Nick's legs and hoofs continue to improve.  Better training?  Better gear?  This is one rat stuff, but clearly things are going in a positive direction.

The results speak for themselves.  Nick worked extremely well all day, getting great vet scores, finally running out of gas about 2 miles from the finish where I let Cheryl go on and let Nick walk in.  I decided to get judged for BC, to see really where he was at the end of the ride, and we actually got decent scores (total 600, BC got 670).  Our total ride time was about six and a half hours, the winning time was about 6:10.

Great food, great people, great ride.  I'm looking forward to this ride again.

Mike Sofen

THROUGH THE EYES OF BECKY GLASER

International rides are all different from one another in many important ways.  They are always held in a new venue, so the logistics, patterns and rhythms vary substantially.  For the majority of the attendees the scenery and the time zone are new and different.  The commonalties that are observed at all of them are: a high level of tension ( No matter how many times we tell ourselves that this is just another hundred, the fact is that it just ain't.); horses and riders are  yanked from the usual schedule of a hundred; there are multitudes of seemingly unnecessary meeting; and schedules and rules are continually arranged and rearranged.  There are rules and more rules.  There is hardly enough time to sleep and never enough time to ride. Everyone gets just a tad frazzled.

In spite of this, there are wonderful opportunities to make new friends and to see old ones. There are "famous" horses and riders that we know only from the Endurance News to be seen and experienced.  The air is always electric with excitement and surprises that competition on this level brings. There is the pageantry of the opening and closing ceremonies.

Vermont is beautiful. Green and forested with deciduous trees which are closer to the earth than our redwoods, pines, and firs. Its mountains roll with serenity-- deliciously different from the steep climbs, rocks, and jaggedness we are accustomed to.  Many roads are dirt, and the ride trail follows them through the back country with occasional breaks of single track. We worried about the heat and humidity.  We were grateful that ride
day was unseasonably cool and DRY. Folks from east of the Mississippi were concerned about the effect on their horses of this unseasonable weather.  I was puzzled.  In retrospect, perhaps they were worried that it leveled the playing field for those from the arid  West.  Didn't it though.   We worried that there were too many vets checks. There were eight with crew allowed at seven.  The drives between checks took only fifteen to twenty minutes, but the parking was usually far from the crew areas, so packing and unpacking, loading and unloading usurped as much time as the waiting for the rider.

Quicksilver was well and truly represented from beginning to end.  We had both the first and the last riders.  Heather Bergantz was of course first, and Brian Reeves and Valorie Weizer were last.  All three rode for Pac South.  Lori Oleson also rode for Pac South.  Her horse, Flame, had tied up early in the week.  Lori and her groom, Kirsten Berntsen, had slaved over him all week diligently following directions from Nancy Elliott, who was there as a ride vet.  By Thursday he looked good to go; however, at the first vet check, though he looked fine, he peed dark and Lori pulled him.

Other members of the Pac South squad were Kathy Campbell and Dave Cootware.  Both finished.  Connie Creech was the chef d'equipe and Susan McCartney was the team vet.  Steve and Michele Roush Shaw represented QSER on the Pac North team.  Michele finished on Robin Hood.  Ernie Elliott was a ride farrier.  Skip Lightfoot crewed for Heather.  Dom Freeman rode for the British.  Legacy was off at one of the vet checks and was pulled.  He was sound as a dollar the next day.  Pretty frustrating.

The scene at the Green Mountain Horseman's Association grounds bustled with vendors, officials, riders, crews and sight seers.  Before the ride festivities officially began, most of the teams were camped in an enormous pasture of lush green grass about a fifteen minute drive by dirt road from GMHA.  The horses were in their portable corrals and could be turned out to graze in portable electric paddocks.  After the opening ceremonies on Thursday the horses had to be kept in their assigned stalls at the GMHA--represented on the net as one of the USA's premier horse facilities. The three day courses and arenas were awesome, but the stalls measured only eight by ten. There were no turn outs available, so every one spent as much time as possible hand walking or grazing horses.  Many riders stayed in their campers in the pasture, and Pac South had their own kitchen tent for group meals and meetings.

Wednesday evening after dinner, Teresa Cross and others festooned the mess tent (canopy really) with Christmas icicle lights run by the generator in T's motor home.  Brian Reeve announced a team building exercise which consisted of silly questions (ex:  to Kathy Campbell who never knew what day it was, "What day is today?").  The answers, right or wrong, were rewarded with a carrot. (Kathy still didn't know what day it was.)  When it was Val Weizer's turn for a question, Brian dropped to one knee in the twinkling darkness and asked, "Will you marry me?"  She was rewarded with a diamond ring.  It was the next day before some of us, Val included,  got that she had been rewarded with carats. Get it?

At the closing ceremonies, Heather was awarded BC, Brian got 2nd heavyweight, and Val got the tail end award.  After all the teams left the arena, Heather took a victory lap.  Red looked like he hadn't done a thing the day before, and Heather sat him beautifully.  At that moment, misty eyed, I wished that Maryben were there.

Pan Am Results

The following are the individual results of the Pan American Championship Ride
held in Vermont on Saturday. Four Quicksilver members completed the difficult course. Our congratulations to all of them.  Heather Bergantz  led the pack with a stunning victory on Skip Lightfoot’s horse, Crystals Charm  (Red). Red added to his laurels by winning the Best Condition Award the next day.

01  44 Crystals Charm       Heather Bergantz   Pac So   (t)  10:39
02  59 Charbiel              Melissa Crain      USA Cent       11:00
03  78 Just Cass             Rita Swift         USA East       11:48
04  71 Jayel Super          Stagg Newman       USA East (t)  11:48
05  74 Smoke Rise Finally   Stephen Rojek      USA East       12:12
06  67 Shyrocco Jazz         Sue Greenall       USA East       12:12
07  77 Shyrocco Troilus   Meg Sleeper        USA East (t)  12:12
08  11 Flirt With Ecstacy   Wendy Benns        Can East (t)  12:14
09  53 Windswift Pharrah    Shelley Bridges    USA Cent (t)  12:41
10  65 Karma Phoenix        Connie Caudill     USA East       12:41
    51 Zalmara Din           Candy Barbo        USA Cent       12:43
    92 Loosey               Patti Crawford     USA Cent       12:43
    26 Tais                  Christine Janzen   Can West (t)  12:48
    54 Sha-Win              Roberta Harms      USA Cent (t)  13:06
    68 GA Tyfa Mynte         Becky Harris       USA East       13:16
    66 Gen Jeb Stuart        Karen Clark        USA East       13:16
    16 JC Sunny Haze        Ryan Rawski        Can East       13:35
    15 JC Quick Quint       Jim Rawski         Can East       13:35
    43 Ravi Das              Jazon Wonders      Pac No   (t)  13:45
20  42 NYR Crown Royal      Karen Vilander     Pac No   (t)  13:45
    27 Kikuyu                Bianca Loseth      Can West (t)  13:45
    10 Traverston Cob      Nancy Beacon       Can East       13:56
    82 Pround Kyd           Carla Eigenauer    USA Mtn  (t)  14:13
    40 Raymond Blur       Dennis Summers     Pac No   (t)  14:14
    56 Flight Leader        Tracy Webb-Hoskins USA Cent (t)      14:14
    63 Bells Snitzel         Brenda Baird       USA East (t)  14:24
    93 Bab Razzmatazz      Connie Walker      USA East      14:31
    87 Markoss+/            Bob Stellar        USA Mtn        14:35
    23 SCA Dartagan          Myna Cryderman     Can West     14:40
30  83 Tu Desirous           Susan Horne        USA Mtn  (t)  14:47
    33 DAF Bobbi Sox       Jennifer Noblin    Gr Brit        15:08
     5 Staten IA            Gregrio Diaz       Brazil   (t)   15:08
    17 MX Tio Vivo       Carol Steiner      Can East (t)  15:11
    20 Galant Legacy       Yvette Vinton      Can East       15:13
    28 Zarafin Zakhubo      Bettina Koehn      Germany       15:14
    46 Talasmans Cruzer+/ Dave Cootware      Pac So   (t)  15:15
    22 Dakota's Ladyhawk  Eve Comrie         Can West       15:17
    61 Gypsy Spirit          Margie Burton      USA Cent      15:20
    19 Aaristocat           Deborah Strand     Can East (t)  15:22
40  76 MAS Shanghaisbeau+  Katherine Shank    USA East      15:23
   70 Kaboot Herlong       Angie McGhee       USA East       15:23
     3 Laredo Bey            Jane McLaughlin    Australia     15:59
    62 HK Contender        Gail Zeck          USA Cent       16:00
    36 Zahln Al-Din         Marie Mallon       Pac No   (t)  16:00
    12 Shahir Ibn Waadal    Kelly Corbyn       Can East       16:03
    57 LM Mastermind       Janice Worthington USA Cent (t)  16:04
   50  DJB Cassels           Marcus L Stoicescu Romania       16:57
   38  ELD Triton            Cassandra Schuler  Pac No        17:09
     7  AM Mister Gipsy       Tatiana Galassi    Brazil   (t)  17:24
   50   4 Shabazzy Flagstaf+/  Pedro Werneck      Brazil   (t)  17:24
   80  Sea Dancer            Marsha Barney      USA Mtn       17:24
   37  FF Classico           Dawn Sanchez, PHD  Pac No        18:36
  39  Robin Hood            Michele Shaw       Pac No        18:47
   21  Flashman              Karen Badger       Can West       18:50
   45  WMA Renegade          Kathy Campbell     Pac So   (t)  18:50
   18  Soaring Eagle         Joan Storrey       Can East (t)  18:50
  48  RB Royale Brand    Brian Reeves       Pac So       19:36
58 49  Copper                Valorie Weizer     Pac So      19:36
================================================================
Pulls (29)
================================================================
    2  LM Khemosabi          Paul Brown         Australia
    6  Idaho Thunder        Renata Farinelli   Brazil
    8  Maquina               Claudio Bagarolli Brazil   (t)
    9  CH Devonaire        Earle Baxter        Can East (t)
   13  Faust                 Shirley Dennis    Can East
   14  Red Express                   Teresa Finnerty     Can East
   24  AU Kari On           Trisha Dowling   Can West (t)
   25  Misty                 Larry Handziuk       Can West (t)
   29  Tsea Sahruk           Karin Strothenke   Germany
   30  Gill Briar Go Gdan    Alison Abrahams     Gr Brit
   31  Proud Legacy          Dominique Freeman Gr Brit
   32  Hol. Tarantella       Cathy Mezenberg     Gr Brit
   34  DJB Star              Elena Witt          Mexico
   35  Lionheart Flash     Rhonda Guilford   Pac No
   47  WRA Flaming Fire+/   Lori Oleson         Pac So   (t)
   52  AI Wyldfyre           K. Becan-McBride    USA Cent
   58  AM Gypsy Bridge     Genie Wunderlich     USA Cent
   60  DJB Oporto            Daroln Butler-Dial  USA Cent
   64  Ali Darkness            Kathy Brunjes       USA East
   69  Shiloh                  Mary Kornwolf      USA East
   73  Phoenix               Dinah Rojek         USA East (t)
   75  Emphatic              Rebecca Russo      USA East
   79  Mr. Snickers          Mary Yager          USA East
   81  Zazaar                 Karen DiCamillo    USA Mtn  (t)
   84  Hai Obsession         Carrie Miracle      USA Mtn  (t)
   85  Shaynes Treasure    Suzanne Pindar      USA Mtn
   86  Nova PR                Debi Sanger         USA Mtn
   89  SR Sabor               Rip Tate            USA Mtn
   90  Albanet                Joaquin Avellan     Venzuelia

The Pacific South  (of which we are a part for international riding)
did not fare so well in the team placings.
 
  USA East              38:14                Pacific South    44:44
  USA Central         39:51     Brazil     49:56
  Pacific North      40:44     USA Mountain
  Canada East          42:47      Canada West

      Heather was named Athlete of the Month for August, 2001, by USET

Mike Maul sends the following:
I believe MB once posted wondering about where the main part of our membership was. The figures are as below, by region.

  Central                9.3 %
  Mountain            8.3
  Midwest              8.2
  Northeast         11.9
  Northwest        12.8
  Pacific South     8.6
  Southwest         5.5
  West                 22.7
  Unknown           0.5

West and Pacific South is 31.3%  or less than 1/3
Northeast & Southeast is  24.2 % or about 1/4

How great to see a picture of Quicksilver member Kathy Thompson and the wonderful LS Zane Grey+// on the cover of Endurance News. Rumor has it that he won 11 Best Condition Awards on the cross country XP Ride this summer. Also in the September issue there was a nice article by Mike Maul on the 5 Day Ft. Schellbourne XP ride. Mike and Quicksilver member Jan Jeffers came in first and second on the last day and the pictures show their horse looking pretty chipper and Mike and Jan, too!
 

Mike has a favor to ask. Here it is....

 If you are a QSER member with an e-mail address and are not on our e-mail list - please send your e-mail address to Mike Maul at mmaul@flash.net  This helps us get you last minute information about meetings, rides, and material about the Quicksilver club.  The list is low volume mail and you can also get a digest form which bundles many messages into one.

Our club web page is also at    www.homestead.com/qsendurance/files/ where you can get the current Quips as well as archived ones.

Dear Members of the Quicksilver Endurance Riders,

This October issue of Quicksilver Quips will complete my ninth years of editing and publishing our monthly Newsletter. I have had an absolutely wonderful time doing it and thank you for the privilege of being connected with such a great group of people.  However, the time has come to end my journalistic odyssey with the Quicksilver gang.  There  seem to be more demands  on my time recently and I have some other projects in which I want to  become more deeply involved.

Kathy Mayeda, will be the new editor with the help of Mike Maul, Kay Allison and Steve Lenheim.  I hope that you will lend them your active support by contributing to the Quips.  They will want to know what rides you have attended, all about that new horse you just bought, or that old one you lost, a new foal. a trip, a trailer for sale, training tips, a funny cartoon, a news item...all the things that interest us as horseman. Don't make them beg for contributions.  Kathy's e-mail address is: qser-quips@att.net and her phone number is 650-967-2050.

Help her all you can.  We have many new members that I am sure have hidden talents of which we are unaware and it would be nice if they could become more active to enrich our club. Our October Fall Classic on October 20 should find us all pulling together...new comers and old timers mixing together to make us a stronger club.

Thank you for the indulgence of allowing me to do whatever I pleased with the Newsletter.    I have loved every minute of it!

Julie
 
10 COMMANDMENTS OF ENDURANCE RIDING

In our sport of endurance riding, there are certain rules to follow that
always hold true. It is wise and prudent for us all to once again review my
"Ten Commandments" of endurance riding. I'll bet that some experienced
veteran endurance riders may find this article redundant or remedial. I want
to focus this article on the "newcomers" and the "adult onset" endurance
riders who have repeatedly asked me for some hints and guide lines to help
them begin the sport of endurance. Of course, there are far more that Ten
Commandments. For now, the basics!

1. Buy the best-conformed horse you can afford. It will save you time,
money, and disappointment in the long run. Be color and sex blind. And
remember the Golden Rule of Endurance: no major conformation faults in the
front legs below the knees!

3. Fat is good on an endurance horse. It helps to make the distance. In any
ride over 30 miles, the horse must tap into his fat storage for fuel and
energy. Without stored fat, he will be "flat out of gas!" I am speaking, of
course, of fat on a well-muscled, conditioned athlete. It is a statistical
fact that a horse carrying extra weight at the start of the Tevis Cup ride
has a far better chance of finishing than an equally conditioned horse that
is lean.

4. It takes three years to make an endurance horse. Even though a horse can
occasionally achieve metabolic and muscular condition in as little as six
months, it takes far longer to build bone density and tendon and ligament
strength. So don't hurry. Take your time and reap the rewards.

5. "Horses run on instinct, not on intellect." My veterinarian, Dr. Jack
Abraham, likes to use this phrase to reinforce the idea that we are
responsible for our own horse's well being, not them. I could not agree
more. Too often I hear, "my horse wanted to run, I didn't make him! Why was
he pulled for metabolic reasons at the lunch stop?" There are a lot of
reasons horses run at endurance races, not the least of which is, it feels
good! Reasons include fear, panic, too much excitement too soon in the
horse's career, instinct to run with the herd, and poor training. It is the
rider's responsibility to ride the ride the same way the horse was ridden in
his conditioning, and to the extent the horse is capable and safe. Horses
react differently on race day. It is important to have a strategy to handle
this situation and stick with it!

6. Endurance horses pace; cows stampede. This is the logical extension of
"commandment #5." In your conditioning training, teach your horse a fast
walk, medium trot, and extended trot. The lope should be used very seldom.
The speed of your horse should be exactly the same all the time, just as you
put your truck at 65 miles per hour to save gas. Slowing down and speeding
up uses energy and that is counter-productive to long distance efficiency.
When your horse learns an even pace, he will feel comfortable and confidant
when he uses it in a ride and it will become automatic for him and easy for
you, too.

7. Horses have a limited number of downhill miles. The front legs of a horse
take at least 75% of the concussion on flat terrain. It is exponential on
down hill terrain and even worse on downhill terrain with any rider,
especially a heavyweight! Teach your horse a collected downhill trot. Use it
only on races when it is necessary; i.e., the Tevis Cup is one ride that it
is almost impossible not to trot downhill on. During conditioning, walk
downhill or get off your horse and lead him at a trot.

8. Rest is as important as conditioning miles. One of the least used tools
of endurance riders can be rest. Once a horse is a veteran (approximately, a
three-year horse) he should have three months off during the winter. All
horses should have a week rest after a fast 50 and a month off after the
Tevis Cup. Conditioning should be completed weeks before the rides, not
increased in the month preceding the ride.

9. Horses don't lie. Pay close attention to your horse's moods and appetite.
If they are suddenly irritable, loose appetite, lethargic, bucks, or
anything other than their normal self, try to figure out why! An endurance
horse that loses his appetite and drops weight may be being ridden too hard.
In this case, you back off on his conditioning until he again begins gaining
weight. Any other changes can be due to foot pain, saddle fit, electrolyte
imbalance, body misalignment, or a variety of reasons. If you cannot
pinpoint the problem or it doesn't resolve in a short time, get a
professional to help you!

10. The most important ingredient in endurance riding or training is trust.
To have a safe and long endurance career, your horse needs to have total
trust in you. You must be his comforter, his leader, and his savior! In
moments of panic, he must turn his back on his instincts and trust you to
save him. This is a big responsibility for us as horse owners. But, in a
moment that can be life or death for you and your horse, you will be glad if
you take the lead. To build trust, you must be consistent, kind, fair, and
relaxed. Never let him down and he'll do the same for you.

*** #2 is missing.  The contest is to make up your own and send it to
Diane Enderle at 17260 Debbie Rd, Los Gatos 95030.  She will choose a
winning entry who will receive a really great grand prize(worth $50)

How many of you know ........
 
         Bill and Sandie Parker?  Ken Cook and Peggy?
       Melissa Ribley, Craig Evans and Michele Shaw?
  Ken and Judy Etheridge?             Bing Voight?
          Connell and Kay Allison,  Maryben?

  and why is it important?
        BECAuse they are the Good guys!!

 They are the people that are volunteering their time to put on our Quicksilver Fall Classic on October 20th. That is, other than STeve Lenheim who is at Coe State Park every weekend mapping out the trail and attending to a million details as Ride Manager.  BUT...he needs Drag Rider...vet secretaries...P & R teams...water truck & driver...Sunday clean-up help.          Who'll offer to be  one of the good guys like those
who have already  signed up for the following jobs?
 
     Bill & Sandie..lunch vet check at 30 miles
    Ken Cook and Peggy...Coit Lake Vet Check at 23 miles
     Ken  & Judy Etheridge...Wilson Camp Vet Check
    Bing Voight, Connell and Kay Allison..start & finish and food
     Melissa Ribley, head vet, with Craig Evans and Michelle Shaw
    Maryben...ride secretary

So join the Quicksilver Good Guys
 Call Steve at work at 831-377-0611 or at home 831-997-0368.
See your name here next month as one of  the Quicksilver Good Guys
 

Oh yes,
The Quicksilver  Good Guys need lots of riders in order to feel fully appreciated.

Published by the Quicksilver Endurance Riders Inc.
P.O. Box 71, New Almaden, CA 95042
Julie Suhr, Editor TEL and FAX 831-335-5933
e-mail  marinera@aol.com