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[RC] Nick Warhol- AERC Chmpnshp 50 ride story 5 of 5 - Nick Warhol

We finished before 4 pm, so we got to chill for a while.  A shower and
some beer, then its into the chair in the sun.  Judy put Warpaint's
regal robe on for some pictures, he looks like he should be in a Rocky
movie with this thing on.  The ride dinner was excellent, we especially
liked the bar.  Bloddy Mary's area good thing after a ride.  But the
awards banquet was a riot!  Robert Ribley was the host, and was pretty
funny with his one liners.  And this was no normal awards ceremony-
Every finisher got a really nice polar fleece finisher jacket and a
picture of their horse taken at the sign up, with the flowers and
championship banner.  It was really nice, especially since my photo was
of Warpaint and Judy, since I was AWOL on Saturday with my stupid truck.
But those weight division winners?  Every one of them won a saddle.
Yeah, a saddle!  A REAL saddle, very expensive saddles.   Sally won a
saddle!  How cool is that?   I'm very proud of them.   They also raffled
off three more saddles, but Robert noticed that the raffle was taking a
long time, so what did he do?  Improvise!  He started just throwing
awards out in to the crowd, like at a baseball game.  It was very funny!
It would have been REALLY funny if he had thrown one of those saddles to
the crowd! 

The ride was excellent in every aspect, I don't think I heard one
complaint all day.  The weather could not have been much nicer- sunny,
cool, with a nice breeze in the afternoon.   It was put on with
professionalism, the trail was fun, it was marked great, plenty of
water, great awards, and lots of good friends all over the place.

But for me, it was a perfect day-Warpaint got his 3,990th mile, one more
ride to go.  We will get him over the 4000 mile mark at Las Vegas, then
it's time for the old guy to hang out and enjoy the rest of his life,
which we all hope will be a very long time.  I'll sure miss riding him
in endurance rides, but I'll always have the memories.   This weekend
will be one of my best.  (Except for the stupid truck, which is not long
for this world.)

Nick Warhol
Hayward, Ca

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