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[RC] Fernvale FEI ride, part 1 - Jay Randle

Hi All
As we left home early Saturday morning, the weather report stated that Cyclone Hamish was moving south along the coast and that SE Qld could experience wet weather on Sunday!  Well, that meant a hasty addition of some wet weather clothing into the bag, as I HATE getting soaking wet while strapping!!  (Even though I usually end up with wet shoes and wrinkly feet anyway!)
So Saturday was hot and dry as we arrived at the Fernvale Rodeo Grounds, where the newly-formed Fernvale Endurance Club has developed quite a good ride base.  The prime movers of Caroline and Paul Fitzgerald, Peter and Penny Toft, Toby and Sue Crockett, and many other local endurance enthusiasts, were joined on the day by a wide selection of local Arabian Studs who are also getting very heavily involved in endurance riding in SE Qld.  Thanks to all concerned, as the weekend was a huge success!
The weather throughout the day ranged from hot to hotter, with periods of very hot, and the river crossing was greatfully appreciated by most!
The prime focus of the ride was the Youth Challenge FEI** 120km, with the goal being for many entrants to qualify for the World Youth Championships in Hungary this September.  Eleven young riders (all female) started the 120km ride, with 10 successful completions.... a BIG congratulations to all involved!  Unfortunately, the one elimination was Splendacrest rider Tarni Kittel, after her lovely mount fell in a hole on the second stage of the ride.  Commiserations Tarni, but I know that you are determined to try again!
The winner of this ride was Erin Krahnen, who also gained the Best Conditioned prize, as well as the "Best Presented" prize (a special award decided by Foreign Delegate Sarah Adams along with photographer Sue Crockett).
The FEI* 82km ride was hotly contested, with about 50 entries, and a winning time of about 4:30 by brothers Brook and Matthew Sample in a "gentleman's agreement" that saw Brook finish 1 second ahead of Matthew.  For a 3-stage 82km ride over pretty hard terrain, this was a great finish, with reports coming in off track of the third-placed rider, Ben Caslick, trying his heart out to catch the Sample brothers in a gallop towards the end of the ride.  The last 15km loop was completed in 28kph!
The Splendacrest Team had great results also in this ride, with Rod Strahan on Shardell Prince Ali (owned by Prutirat R. Serireongrith of Thailand) finishing in 7:24 for 17th placing (this young gelding's first open ride), Kristan Kershaw on Bullarto Fiorelli finishing in 7:26, and John Dugan on Performance Park Lady Kharisma finishing in 7:26.  Angela Head completed the Youth division, placing 6th on Dallas Blakely's lovely gelding.... congratulations Ang, and thanks to Dallas and Andrew!  Our one casualty in the 82km ride was Gerard Bou on Splendacrest Fiesta, who unfortunately vetted out at the re-present before the third leg due to the extreme heat, with a high heartrate!  But as with every vet-out, it was a learning experience for us all.
Best regards

Jay Randle

May the horse be with you.....

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