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Title: Goals

I agree that there are a certain class of endurance riders that Endurance World appeals to.  And I belong to a club and board at a facility that has several FEI riders as well as the rest of us “normal” folks.  To tell you the truth, we do not differentiate too much between “US” and “THEM” at the personal level, but we always look forward to good stories.

The problem with Tom’s tirades is that he does not allow for the fact that top rider are not winning every race.  Many top riders will be bringing along a new horse and will be riding slow local rides as part of the horses training. 

For instance, Heather Bergantz has a relatively new mare that she finished four days at Death Valley Encounters.  She did not win the ride, but was not expecting to at all.  She was applying “To Finish is to Win.”  She is however, ready to fly out this weekend with Red to compete in the UAE.   She is still one of “US”, and we have fun riding together. 

In fact, Heather in her regular environment is a totally different Heather on Big Race Day.  She is a “PROFESSIONAL” in her demeanor and totally focused on Big Race Day, even though she does not derive her main source of income for endurance riding (yet).  And she was  not ALWAYS a top rider, but spent many a mile riding as a junior with MaryBen to get to where she is today, AT the local rides and with the motto “To Finish is To Win.”  Nothing wrong with that

You can race all you want, just don’t put people down for starting at the grass roots level or wanting to stay at the grass roots level.  It is a hobby to most of us, and a few of us do aspire to higher goals and have the means to compete internationally.  You have to remember that competing in Europe, you almost HAVE to compete under FEI, whereas our country is vast enough and we have enough challenging rides that are not FEI sanctioned to keep us happy.  And yes, some of us do race and want to win, too.


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