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[RC] AW: [RC] Jockeys (was Riding Cavalry) - Deanna German

Hilga, maybe something is getting lost in the translation. This wasn't a
rah, rah U.S. thing, I was just using the U.S. riders as an example since I
know the most about them.

So I'll go through this again. Please, don't get angry. It's not worth the
increase in blood pressure!

I said:
Yeah, you better believe I'm underappreciating the kid who won the WEC last
year. I guess it's a relative thing. The kid compared to all the teams with
riders who do all the training, conditioning and care for their mounts vs.
flat-track jockeys who, as I understand it, are hired guns for the race only
and it's that way across the board for every horse.

So you better never let youself be caught on somebody elses horse in a
competition. Never, ever!

God forbid, I wasn't denegrating everyone who has ever ridden a horse that
wasn't their own. I can't defend myself against THAT many people, and I
certainly would never question the judgement of someone like Julie Suhr.

For the record, not only have I ridden other's horses in competition, I have
asked another to ride mine in the novice distance when I was RM'ing the ride
and, wow was it hard to turn my horse over to someone else -- she's a better
rider than me, but she doesn't know my horse the way I do. In CTR, I
couldn't help her other than download all I know before the competition. I
borrowed horses for CTRs of 15-60 miles, not on the scale of 100 milers, but
CTR is, by definition, cavalry style. Geez, there was just a great story
here from a woman who rode Zayante (see, I remember the horse! Sorry to
whomever's name I forgot!) in the DVE all 4 days, and she doesn't own the
horse. A superb accomplishment -- I wouldn't dream of labeling her a
"jockey" though. If I would remember her name, I could look it up in the
AERC records and I would probably see that she had thousands of miles to her
credit, probably quite a few on Zayante.

Did you not read anything about the guy from Malyasia? Can you not see the
difference between the people I mentioned and the 16YO kid who won the WEC?

How can one (not you only, but all of those "hate jockey people") be so ...
(have no word for that),

You might be looking for the word "judgemental". "Hate" is a strong word and
I seldom use it; the way you've used the word implies a judgement on their
person instead of simply questioning decisions, ideas or beliefs. (I don't
like personal attacks.) I simply lack admiration.

...as to call any person riding somebody elses horse in a competition a
"jockey" and thereby mean he should not be called an endurance rider at all.

I don't think I said that specifically, I think this falls under the
"underappreciated" heading. I reserve my admiration for those who brought
along a horse to have the privilege of riding that horse in an international
event. I have less admiration (a lot less) for those who simply ride the
event. This is simply my opinion, nothing more and not a call to arms! How
many miles does a person have to ride to get a horse ready for a 100? 2000?
(I don't know!) I admire the person who did those 2100 more than I admire
the person who did the 100. No matter the placing.

Do not many of them have one or more horses at home, caring for them,
conditionig them, bringing them along?

I would think that some of them do. Not many. Those in the U.S. who have
more than one horse going at a time make it their full-time job and work
hard at it. They definitely don't have grooms and exercise riders!

So I assume all top level US riders start all these top level horses from
scratch all by themselves.

Somebody more knowledgeable than me want to answer this one? My impression
is that, yeah, they all did start all these top level horses from scratch
and build them up to where they are now. Even if they didn't, and someone
else put the base on them, they've been training, conditioning, competing
and caring for them for the duration of their endurance careers and
certainly have ridden every step of the qualifying rides.

But again, I'd like to steer away from making this an "the U.S. way is the
only right way" discussion because it clouds things. I'm sure other
countries and individuals are doing things similarly.

I personally don't know of anyone who does 100's without designated crew plus
whoever else is nearby to lend a hand, yet clearly some do, at least for Old
Dominion. What an accomplishment!! What terrific horsemanship.

Somehow I totaly fail to see any horsemanship here.
Do you really think the (likely worn out) rider can take much better care
for the horse than a two people crew can? Do you think it´s no good for the
horse to have acess to some extra waterbuckets and some mouthfull of food
between the vetchecks? Can´t see how the rider can do that all by himself.

According to my private email, a hell of a lot of them do!! Not just in the
Old Dominion, but on 100 milers all over! Why wouldn't it be just another
challenge to overcome, and yeah, I do think they can take just as good of
care of their mount, or even better, than a crew. I'd think it would take a
LOT of planning, a lot of smarts and an even increased level of fitness for
the rider. It would require knowing the horse as well as any one person can,
inside and out. It would require great sensitivity to the horse. And lots o
smarts. That's why this earns my supreme admiration.

And don´t you agree that being a good rider instead a bag of sand in the
saddle really helps the horse? It sure helps the rider ride a big lot better
if he gets at least some rest in the vetcheck.

Fitness. Preparedness. Smarts. It can be done because it's being done!

Should not "Horsemanship" be all about the horses wellfare?

Yup. And the person who knows the horse inside and out is less likely than
anyone to miss the small things.

Does "Horsemanship" need to be showed off, or isn´t it rather in the small
things, the passersby will never see anyway?

Endurance isn't a spectator sport. When I say I want to "see" horsemanship,
I want to "see" some evidence of it.  The winner of the WEC might be a
wonderful horseman. I'd like to believe he is but I have no clue. Likely he
doesn't care what I think or what I'm interested in. Why would or should he?
He was the one who rode the winning horse and he won fair and square.

As I said, all-cavalry is an (I think) interesting idea. I don't even know
if the question was put to ANY of the participants of the last WEC if it
would be well received! It's not a ghastly notion. It's already happening. I
just think it would be interesting to have competitions at the international
level where everyone was required to do things cavalry style. Heck, that
would be interesting at any level.


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