LBJ Grassland Benefit 25/50 mile ride

George McGraw (
Mon, 10 Nov 1997 12:41:53 -0600

LBJ Grasslands Benefit Ride
November 8, 1997

The Texas Arabian Distance Riders Association, a club in Region 9 of
IAHA, hosted a 50/25 mile ride to benefit the trails and horse camp at
the LBJ Grasslands near Decatur, TX. The Grasslands has 22,000 acres
which are managed by the US Forest Service. Each year the Grasslands is
the site of several endurance and competitive rides. This year TADRA has
helped build a permanent restroom and planted wildflowers to compliment
the 50 miles of permanent trails. The funds raised at this ride will be
used to improve access roads and camping pads.

Ride manager, Eddie Spurgeon, released 34 riders to the trails at 7AM in
what was to be a near perfect day for endurance riding. The temperature
was in the high 40's at start time and warmed up to almost 70 with a
good breeze as the day progressed. The trails were well marked with
plenty of water from creeks and stock ponds. The front runners set a
fast pace in what would prove to be a close finish. Darolyn Butler and
Bridget Cavanaugh traded the lead for the last 25 miles. The last half a
mile saw Darolyn take the lead as Bridget missed a turn, which cost her
valuable seconds. The final segment of the race started with less than a
quarter of a mile to go with Darolyn ahead by two lengths. Bridget was
determined not to be second and gave Nick his head and went for the
lead. At the finish it was Bridget and Nick [Karronick] by less than a
length over Darolyn on Cassels Marcos, in a winning ride time of 4:27.

The remaining top ten pairs were Bobbie Barber - Kash, first Junior
Hillary Zeigler - Bab Sheeba, Jan Wright - Bab Terah, George McGraw -
Forward Motion, George Nixon - Abby, Dale Horst - Freckles, Dolly Miller
- GS Silverado and Jim Miller - JY Bengal Lancer. Head veterinarian,
Dennis Seymore, scored JY Bengal Lancer, ridden by HW Jim Miller, a near
perfect 490 Vet score resulting in an overall winning Best Condition
total of 743.5.

Appaloosas are a beautiful and strong breed that do well in endurance,
and their performance is typified by Tejanos Warrior, who passed the
2000 mile marker at this ride. Tejanos is owned and ridden by Erma Cook.
This ride also saw several nationally ranked competitive trail riders
complete their first 50 mile endurance ride. This year's Region 9
Competitive Trail Champion, Sharon Rubley, rode S A Scirocco while Carla
Bass rode NTRAC National Heavy Weight Champion Midnight Bay DBA +.
There were 32 finishers from the starting field of thirty-four.

The seventy-eight 25-mile Limited Distance riders took to the trails at
9 AM. There were many first time riders and eight juniors in this large
field of riders. DAF Bobbi Sox, ridden by Jennifer Noblin, was first to
reach the 56 criteria in a time of 2:27. First Junior was Khristin
Seymore riding Fire Pony. ZIA, ridden by Bethany Cobb, was awarded an
embroidered cooler as the Best Condition award in recognition of their
729 score.