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Re: [RC] Racing - Joe Long

On Wed, 7 Apr 2004 19:36:57 -0700, "Carol" <cstiles@xxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

Give me a break, haven't you ever seen a reining horse 
or a roping horse stop at a sliding stop? Or better yet, 
ask Alice how fast her 1000lb horse can stop when he 
spooks. The problem is when the rider can't "control" their horse.
Carol

Even roping and spooking horses don't stop instantaneously.  

Yes, some riders run in out of control, but the most concientious
rider on the best-trained horse still can't always avoid people who
are in the way at the finish.

The poblem is with poorly designed finish lines and people standing
where they put themselves at risk to horses racing in.  If someone is
injured due to a finish line being in or too close to camp, or lacking
both a safe runup to the finish line AND a safe runout (shutdown) area
past the finish line, IMO the ride manager is negligent and primarily
responsible for the injury.

In addition to the risk of injury, riders deserve a fair and safe
opportunity to race in.  No one who has put in the time, preparation,
travel and expense to compete in a ride should lose his chance at
placing because he has to pull up prematurely (due to poor finish line
design or people standing where they put themselves at risk).

I once finished third in a ride I should have been first, because the
trail to the finish was barely wide enough for two horses to go
side-by-side, and I couldn't pass the husband and wife who were riding
next to each other ahead of me.

The Ride Manager's Handbook used to say that the finish should have
enough room for THREE horses to run full-speed side by side, with
enough safe area to slow down and stop gradually after crossing the
finish line.  I don't have a copy handy so I can't say it is still
worded that way.

-- 

Joe Long
jlong@xxxxxxxx
http://www.rnbw.com

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We are talking about all the tools we can use to keep our horses safe and
alive at the rides. Training/conditioning is one of the best tools
available. It makes us better horseman and women, it benefits our horses
and could quite possibly be the key to preventing most crashes.
~ Lisa Salas - The Odd Farm

ridecamp.net information: http://www.endurance.net/ridecamp/

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Replies
Re: [RC] Racing, Carol