[RC] Thoughts - Marinera
In answer to your question as to why I am not in favor of weight divisions,
I believe we each go to a ride with our individual assets and liabilities.
Endurance riding is not a fair sport where we all start out as equals.
Is it fair to pit a heavyweight against a lightweight? No.
Is it fair to pit the one horse owner on a very limited income against the
multi-horse owner with money to spare? No.
Is it fair to pit my body against the 20 somethings? No.
Is it fair to require a certain weight to be carried according to weight
divisions, but let the real athletes get off and run for miles leaving the
horse with only the saddle on his back? No.
Is it fair to let veterinarians with their far vaster knowledge of what
makes the horse tick compete against layman? No.
Is it fair that horses on a new trail compete against those that live at the
end of the trail? No.
So we have a totally unfair sport. We try to correct one facet with weight
divisions and totally ignore all the others that I consider are equally
important in deciding the results of a ride. We don’t enter this sport as
equals, we do not come out of it as equals. The only fair thing we share is
the trail which is the same for each entrant. However, I have accepted
weight divisions because that is what the majority wants. It is not a big
issue with me.
The plus I do see for weight divisions is that it broadens the number of
goals for which people can strive. It offers something of importance to more
individuals and makes more people happy which is something we all seek. But
if my life depended on it, literally, I could not tell you the name of a
single 2001 National Champion is. And that is a shame. They each worked hard
and earned their titles, but to me a national champion is one person— one
person who rose above all others for whatever reason. And I agree with you
that this year that one person is Jan Worthington. I don’t care how much she
weighed or didn't weigh. She entered the ride with her own personal strengths
and weaknesses as each one of us does whenever we enter a ride. She was the
first across the finish line with a horse fit to continue. That is the
National Champion to me.
Thanks for hearing me out.
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