Images by Gilly Wheeler
A sole rider, Kevin James, represents New Zealand in The Presidents
Endurance Cup this year. James, who hail's from the South Island, was
a top class marathon runner before he took up endurance in 1977. He
adapted the knowledge he had gained as an athlete to work and train
his horses to the same peak condition both physically and mentally to
succeed in equine marathons of endurance. His basic principle is to
establish a sound base of fitness and condition, then look ahead
towards a twelve month goal.
James can be classed as a professional as his life is totally
committed to endurance. He breeds endurance horses, he trains
endurance horses, and he competes in endurance and advises developing
endurance countries. Since 1977 he has won three National
Championships and Team Gold at the 1998 World Championships in
He was member of the New Zealand Squad this year but
unfortunately James, alongside three other members of the New Zealand
squad failed to finish.
Kevin's addiction to the sport is highlighted in that he is competing
in New Zealand on the 12th of February, flies to the UAE on the 13th
rides on the 17th returns to New Zealand on the 18th to ride in their
South Island Championship on the 19th. He will once again be one of
the favourites to win the New Zealand National Championship in March
before he flies to South America in April to compete in the Open Pan
American Endurance Championship.
James will be riding a horse from one of the Dubai Stables in the
Presidents Cup. His dual National Championship winner Karamea Kazahni
is now owned by HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum.