Check it Out!
Well, we did our 2nd 50 miler ride of the season Saturday. Our first
was 2 weeks ago and I was really worried about doing too much too soon,
but my friend persuaded me we would go slowly and use the ride as a
training ride for our first 100 miler this year(Easter weekend).The last
ride we averaged 15km/h and it was very very hot, so we planned a slow
ride this time as this was also a very hot day and a very flat easy
We travelled up on Friday afternoon - a 250 km drive and very slow as we
hit amazing thunderstorms the whole way. I was without the services of
my best crew as my husband was away on a working trip and it was just
myself and my two sons. I really miss Andre on these trips as he usually
drives and I can relax after the frantic running around packing and
buying last minute things.
The ride was in the Western Transvaal region which is the grain(and
sunflower) capital of South Africa and we counted 170 silos on the
This club is the friendliest in SA I'm sure and it is a pleasure
arriving there- they go out of there way to help and be friendly and
everything is very well organised . The course is very flat and sandy
and boring(maize fields, sand roads and millions of sunflowers!!!) . My
friend Sue and I started early(5h55) and from the start Rex and
Shaliekah went really well together.
BIG trot for the first 15kms and then canter. Both were drinking well
and spooking at EVERYTHING!!. The ride was quite treacherous as we had
34 mm of rain the day before and together with the thick sand there was
lots of mud which a lot of people didn't factor in.. The first vet check
Shaliekah's pulse was 36, so all was well ,so far. Speed 17 km/h. Second
leg about 5 km from home she lost her left front shoe , but with the
ground so soft we came in fine- no breaking down of the foot, Got the
farrier to put new one on and presented. I had a heart attack when the
vet said pulse 48 - I had just taken it and it was 40!!. Didn't trust
this vet(a real farm vet and known for mistakes). Shaliekah often has
pulse problems in that her Lub_Dub beats are soo far apart vets often
double count. Anyway she was sound and within the parameters so we
rushed out(late) for the last 20kms.
This was a terrible section - long flat boring sand road for 8 kms
straight out the venue and it was now midday and boiling(35 degrees).
Madame lost all interest and was not even keen to try and keep up with
Rex. We got further and further behind while we did our small slow "I
don't want to do this" trot.!!! Eventually we turned off the road into
the maize fields and picked up some speed and keeness as now we were
facing home!!. Came in together with Rex and absolutely drenched
ourselves in water(me included- I just sat in the trough!!!!!).
Took her pulse at 48 and presented- same damn vet again- he says pulse
60 !!!!!. At this stage I wasn't going too fight as we were within
parameter and I just wanted to get her out of the sun and into her
paddock with some grass and food!!!. Sue took her pulse immediately
after the trot out and it was 48!! We finished in 4h45 and she was fine
- no stiffness, alert and scoffing everything in sight!!!. I was very
happy and left her to wander in a huge field overnight - very happy to
see her trotting up and down the fence line flirting with the stallion
across the way(not good for his or his owners pulses, but great for me
as she more than kept herself limbered up without me walking her!!!).
Loaded up Sunday morning and arrived home 3 hours later. She will have
10 days rest(one lesson in between), and in 3 weeks I will ride Shanelle
at her first 50 miler and my son will take Shaliekah for his first 30 km
ride at the same time. Then it is 3 weeks to the 100 miler!!!
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Check it Out!
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