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AW: [RC] Vetting during holds - Hilga Höfkens

Ok, my experience on national rides in Gemany and CEIs in and around here.
It seems to me, that a exit exam (with tack on) becomes ever more
fashionable at international rides, exp. for the checks in the second half
of the course. Ever more often the pulse criteria is set to 60 bpm / 20 min
as well. And at most rides a CRI is done at the later checks (like the last
two checks of a 100 miler).
I do like all of it.
The recheck usually is done 10min before outtime. If performed fast and with
no wait, you can still let your horse graze somewhat before leaving, and
with propperly organised vetchecks (the in-checkers have to wait if anybody
is coming for an out-check) everybody is out in time (I never had any
problems).
I do agree, that with two checks (the first one usually being "tack-off")
the break should be 45min. Otherwise one is busy with tacking on and off and
the horse gets no real rest.
The lowering of pulse to 60bpm seems to be no problem for all breeds, but
slows down the race a bit (at least before vetgates).
The CRI does tell a lot about the metabolic, that IMHO is hard to acess by
other means. I had that experience once with my horse being fine on
gutsounds and everything else, eating and all. Only the CRI would not be 2-4
beats down, but slightly up (like 56-58). Took special care of my mare in
that break, and played easy the next stage of the ride. Next vetcheck CRI
was fine as usual again. I still believe, if they had not done CRI, I would
have pressed on, not knowing about any problem (top ten was within reach
that time) and would have had trouble later on (finished 8th anyway).

Hilga from Germany
(Wasn´t there a t-shirt saying: "To finish first you first must finish.")

My experience has been with an exit CRI, with a check of gut sounds as well
(we were instructed to go 10 minutes before our out time).  This, of course,
requires a vet.  There wasn't a huge line (it was at the 2nd of 3 vet
checks, I was in the middle of the pack) but it took a total of about 10
minutes including the wait.  It was a 'tack off' check which I didn't like
and I don't see a big advantage.  If the horse is fit to go back on the
trail, having the tack on shouldn't make a difference.

Staffing is always an issue because you never know for sure how many horses
are going to come in together at any given point in the ride (you expect
them to be bunched up at the beginning and spread out as the ride
continues).  An exit pulse check is a good idea and is easier to manage.  It
certainly would be a start in the right direction.

SusanB


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