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[RC] FW: [Aussie_Endurance] Quilty buckle wooooohoooo! - Jay Randle

A report from Gerard Bou ("G"), who rode Splendacrest Fiesta (owned by Shigeru Ogawa of Japan): 

I have spent today gazing at and stroking my buckle trying to think
of a way to put into words what it means to me.I'm having some
trouble with that so if I could share some of my TQ experience with
you all then you might get the idea.
Only 18 months ago I heard about the Quilty and from the moment I
heard the word it held a special place in my heart.When you hear how
many people try and fail and how dissapointed they were when they
were eliminated or how on the other side some who have multiple
buckles still keep chasing them you know that it is something
special.Everyone I've met in endurance talks of the Quilty and they
all speak of it with such high regard that you know you have to give
it a go.So the training begins with the goal being a buckle.
12 months later Jay Randle (bless her)gives me the opportunity to
qualify.Yes please.Thanks to a wonderfull little horse (the machine)
and a wonderfull young lady (Tarnia Kittel) I managed to get around
160k's alive and qualify for a Quilty.Let me tell you I was stoked
about that!
Then it works out that I'm given the chance to ride the same horse
at the Quilty.Good fortune has come my way alot over the past 18
months.Good fortunes name is Jay Randle.
What a build up it has been.Training always with a view of the
buckle.So many things could go wrong,what if's and maybe's everywhere
but we managed to get to Quilty week in the end.
I've been a great sleeper before rides this year but I doubt I got
20 mins on friday night(wonder why).Up for a cuppa and a green and
gold hairspray attack from my 2 favourite 15 year olds and it's into
the ring with 200 odd horses for the main show.
Warming up my little mare and a fellow pulls up beside me and wishes
me luck.I didn't recognise him in a helmet as I've never seen him on
a horse before(too busy organising rides).This fellow was Bob
Sample.Holder of 15 buckles. I got the impression that his 16th was
as important to him as my 1st was to me.I got quite a kick out of
riding a little of the 2nd leg with Bob.
I won't go into the ride in detail it would take way too long but it
was hot,hilly and tough.A real test of endurance.
The end of the last leg was fantastic but worrying.Will I get
through?Trot out feels great let's hope it looks great.A handshake
from the vet and the world is lifted from my
shoulders.Wooooooofreakinhoooooo Quilty Buckle.I struggled to hold
back the tears.What a feeling that is.Impossible for me to explain.
To make a long story short I must thank Shigeru Ogawa for letting me
ride his horse.I must thank the whole Splendacrest team for their
help throughout the ride. And a huge thanks to Jay Randle for absolutely everything!
So in future I'll be wearing my pants under my armpits so my buckles
on my chest for all to see because I am so very proud to have one and
very proud to be a Splendacrest rider.
 I love this sport! G



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