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Re: [RC] LD and Placings - Barbara McCrary

----- Original Message -----
Sent: Thursday, July 03, 2008 3:11 PM
Subject: Re: [RC] LD and Placings

First, AERC recognizes LD as a competition, and provides an LD program with various awards.  So - I don't agree with not giving ride placements and ride times.   I would bet there are some folks that think 50's are just "training" for 100's ....

It doesn't matter what "some folks think", it is in the AERC rules...that an endurance ride is defined as no less than 50 miles.  This rule has stood since the beginning of AERC in 1972.  Period.
Personally, I would not want to go to a ride where I was planning on riding LD, and would not get any recognition other than mileage.  Some folks may consider that distance as "just training", but for a (growing) portion of the AERC membership - people are getting older, and some folks just aren't up to riding 50 miles, but still want to be part of the AERC community.   I see no reason to attend a ride where I would automatically be classified as "second class".

I've been around AERC for a long time, since before it became a national organization, and I've been hearing this same old story about LD riders feeling like they are treated as "second class citizens."  I rode a LD last year...my new horse's first and my first in many years.  I sure didn't feel like a second class citizen, I felt like an old woman who had aches and pains, but I had a wonderful time and a wonderful ride, scoping out my new horse's behavior on the trail and his durability.  If you feel like you can make the AERC board and office feel sorry for you, give it up.  I was on the board for 20+ years, so I've seen it all before.  If you think you are unable, or don't want to ride more than 30-35 miles on one day, then ride Competitive Trail.  It is a great venue, it gives lots of recognition for horsemanship and horse behavior, and it is rarely over 30 miles on one day.  But please stop demanding that AERC change its rules, because endurance is just that...enduring beyond that which is comfortable for the rider, and a greater challenge to the horse and rider, requiring a dedicated conditioning program.
I'm sorry if I sound like a grouch, but this same issue comes up, time and time again.  LD was brought into the AERC fold for the purpose of training young horses, new riders and horses being brought back from down time.  It was not brought into AERC for the purpose of making competitions out of them and does not warrant a lot of complaining about how AERC isn't doing it right.

[RC] LD and Placings, Karen Standefer
Re: [RC] LD and Placings, Elizabeth Walker