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Atheta21
Jan. 6, 2008, 08:58 PM
I did my second LD 25 and on my way in we picked up the canter and cantered all the way in. Now my horse is a dressage horse and we use the endurance to get out of the arena and we both LOVE it! As we were cantering in we passed 7 people that were walking in. They looked at us like we were crazy for cantering in. He pulsed down in 2 minutes. Is this fast? He had the same attitude at the end as he did when we started the ride.
Is it bad to canter in even if you know you can pulse down quickly and at no harm to the horse? Should we move up to a 50mi if the 25mi are seeming so easy? I don't want to stress the horse, as we use the endurance rides to relieve stress! What do yall think? Thanks!

Here we are smiling all the way along!:)

http://s228.photobucket.com/albums/ee203/Atheta21/?action=view&current=P1010750.jpg

Oh, also, are the boots in the pic OK? They are open front boots. I noticed most people did not wear protective leg wear. What is the best leg wear for the rides? Thanks!

UT
Jan. 6, 2008, 09:17 PM
if your horse can pulse down, then cantering past the finish line is fine. I have known many top endurance riders doing just that.
Good for you to take your dressage horse on 25 miles. Unless you are seriously considering going into endurance riding, 25 miles will give you and your horse the chance to stretch out and have fun. What level is your dressage horse?

Atheta21
Jan. 6, 2008, 09:38 PM
Great! Thanks for the advice, please keep them coming! He has shown 3rd (got a 68% on 3-1:D) and is schooling 4th Level. Oh and he is just a paint:lol:!
I am conservative with him on the trail, because it would be very expensive for me to replace him, and I am just a poor trainer :lol:. But I think I learned a lot about him on the last ride, it should help me next time!
I do day dream about doing a 100 on him...

chicamuxen1
Jan. 7, 2008, 07:32 AM
About the boots, use boots only if you know your horse has an interfering problem, IE he is know to occasionally clip himself with his own feet. Otherwise, ditch them. There is no boot that will prevent a strain or absorb concussion moving upward from the foot to ground impact. All a bunch of sales hype and monkey-see-monkey-do silliness. Boot can prevent cuts and blunt force trauma from the outside, like a foot winging in against an ankle, or a rock with your horse's name on it. Most of the rock cuts are around the pasterns anyway. Boots hold heat, hold mud and sand and can rub. I use very simple Toklat splint boots to protect the inside of my horses hind ankles/cannons as he will occasionally nick himself (base narrow hind leg conformation) but I have to remove them the instant I hope off at vet checks, wash them before putting them back on and try to fasten them tight enough to not be sucked down the leg in deep mud but not so tight that they rub. Pain in the a*#!!!

Leave them off. Let strong legs be your horse's best defense.

chicamuxen

Auventera Two
Jan. 7, 2008, 08:51 AM
I rarely use boots because they usually end up full of sticks, burrs, water, sand, and rocks. That causes more damage than leaving them bare. Unless your horse interferes, I wouldn't use boots.

JackSprats Mom
Jan. 7, 2008, 10:32 PM
In a Limited Distance the rules state the horse and rider finish when the horse meets the pulse criteria after crossing the finish line, NOT the time when it crosses the finish line. Also the pulse criteria at the finish is normally lower BPM than that set for the previous vet checks. Glad to hear your horse came down within 2 minutes. That's not too bad, but... for an LD you should walk into the finish to be down to pulse within 30 seconds of crossing the finish, if you aren't already at pulse the second you step across the line. 5 minutes should be the maximum time you should accept (on a personal level).


I didn't know that, thanks!:)

saratoga
Jan. 8, 2008, 10:53 AM
Technically, it makes more sense to walk in to the finish at an LD since your horse will pulse down faster, but it can certainly be fun to canter across, to "show off" and if there is a photographer there.
Most people will probably be walking in, at endurance distances too- unless they are racing- just because you are in the mode of cooling your horse off and putting it away at that point, but nothing wrong with cantering.

Romantic Rider
Jan. 8, 2008, 10:53 PM
If you're just out there to have fun and don't care about pulsing down quickly and placing, I dont' see anything wrong with cantering across the finish line. Mom and I did LD's last year, and endurance this year. I think we usually walked across the line last year. THough I remember riding into camp sometimes. It depends on the trail, the heat. We would try to come in so we could just strip our tack, sponge a little water on them if it was hot, and go pulse down. That's pretty much what we try to do in endurance too, though in reality I think we take a little longer to pulse down and come in a little faster. I have cantered over the finish line a couple of times this year, and it is the most wonderful feeling.

Atheta21
Jan. 10, 2008, 11:14 AM
So then, LD's are not a race? Then why do they give placings just like they do for the endurance?
On a side, what if you see people ahead a mile or so close to the finish line. You know you can canter past them and still pulse in faster than they can walk in. Would you still walk in or would you canter in?

As for the boots, my horse does not interfere, but if we get any bumps on the legs, they will be frowned upon during a pre-purchase exam, if I were to ever sell him as a dressage horse. Although, I think I would prefer to go with no boots after reading this forum.

Just Wondering
Jan. 10, 2008, 11:19 AM
So then, LD's are not a race? Then why do they give placings just like they do for the endurance?


No - they are not a race.

Typically the finish line for racing across is a ways back also. Racing horses into camp can be very dangerous.

Auventera Two
Jan. 10, 2008, 11:30 AM
Since when are LDs not a race? :confused: They award placings 1-10. You have 6 hours to finish 25 miles, and 8 hours to finish 35. Finish criteria is a little different than in endurance because you have to pulse down before you get your finish time. But as far as I know, you're still racing. Unless you want to just finish and aren't concerned about placings. If it weren't a race, wouldn't it just be a trail ride? Can you explain further what you mean, JW?

LD riders probably strategize a little differently because of the low criteria at the ending vet check. My LD rides so far have only been for experience and training for my youngster. I wasn't concerned about placings but only wanted a good experience and good vet cards so I can't comment on the LDers racing strategy.

saratoga
Jan. 10, 2008, 11:44 AM
All AERC rides are technically races though the majority of people are not racing, just going out to acheive their own goal.

Your final time for LD is when you pulse down, not when you cross the finish, so for the LDers who choose to race, it is a decision for them to make, whether they want to come in ahead of their competitors and hope they pulse down fast or come in more slowly and be likely to be down right away.

Just Wondering
Jan. 10, 2008, 11:56 AM
Since when are LDs not a race? :confused: They award placings 1-10. You have 6 hours to finish 25 miles, and 8 hours to finish 35. Finish criteria is a little different than in endurance because you have to pulse down before you get your finish time. But as far as I know, you're still racing. Unless you want to just finish and aren't concerned about placings. If it weren't a race, wouldn't it just be a trail ride? Can you explain further what you mean, JW?



The Limited Distance winner is the first to pulse down to the pre-ride determined criteria. You can 'race' in and 'beat' 4 other horses - yet if those horses pulse down prior to your horse - they will place higher.

For endurance it is a race to the finish and the first across the line is the winner - UNLESS they cannot meet pre-ride determined parameters within the hour after crossing the finish line.

islandhorse
Jan. 10, 2008, 12:21 PM
A recent example: At the 30 mile LD ride I did last week, I was riding with two other riders the last 17 mile loop. We had been trotting just about the entire time, and about a mile from camp, I told them I wanted to walk into camp. They continued trotting in. About 1/2 mile from camp, I got off, loosened my horse's girth, and hand-walked him in. The other two riders I was riding with were so far ahead of me I could barely see them (at this point we were in a big open area). I figured they crossed the "finish line" at least 10 minutes before me. But I was the first one to pulse down. I came in 13th out of 30 some riders. I was sooo happy because it was a difficult ride for us (deeeppppp sand 90% of the trail)

The whole thing about LD is that it teaches you to learn about your horse, including how long it will take your horse to reach 60 bpm after you slow down to a walk. A Top 10 in an LD (although some rides don't give Top 10 and BC in LD - that's a different thread) may depend on how well you know your horse - is it better to hand-walk your horse the last little bit or race in confident your horse will pulse down before the other rider behind you strolls in on foot?

That's part of the fun - strategy.

Auventera Two
Jan. 10, 2008, 12:58 PM
The Limited Distance winner is the first to pulse down to the pre-ride determined criteria. You can 'race' in and 'beat' 4 other horses - yet if those horses pulse down prior to your horse - they will place higher.

For endurance it is a race to the finish and the first across the line is the winner - UNLESS they cannot meet pre-ride determined parameters within the hour after crossing the finish line.

I get what you're saying, but isn't that still technically a race? The criteria is just different. First to pulse down versus first across the finish line. If there's 25 people in the ride, and you cross the finish in 25th, you're not going to pulse down before someone who ended 3 hours ahead of you. :lol: So of course you have to make respectable time in order to be in the top 5 or top 10. Doesn't the AERC refer too all events as races/rides? Depending on if you just want to ride, or if you want to race. Well, except for 12 to 15 mile novice rides.

Atheta21
Jan. 10, 2008, 10:06 PM
I still don't understand how it is not a race since the AERC even publishes the LD Results in its monthly magazine. It seems that the AERC thinks it's a race. If the governing body thinks it's a race, who does not think it so?
I like the strategy part. It's super fun! Maybe convincing us that it's not a race is Justwondering's strategy! :lol:

Romantic Rider
Jan. 10, 2008, 10:08 PM
Yeah, it's kind of strange. LD's are races in a way, and then in a way, they really aren't. It's kind of frustrating. Finishing a 50 is so much more relaxing because you aren't waiting impatiently with a stesthescope for the horse to pulse down. I remember several times coming in with other people at the end of an LD ride, and I always top tenned. You don't want to be frantic, trying to get your horse to pulse down but it's hard not to be jittery when you see the other doing the same thing.

Just last spring, on my only LD ride of the season, I was riding with two other people, and they for some stupid reason decided to gallop in the last couple of miles. I was probably stupid myself for going with them, but I didn't figure I'd have much chance of beathing them if I fell too far behind. I think my little mare took four or five minutes to pulse down, (just behind one of them, and several minutes ahead of the other), which I didn't think was too bad, considering. And I suppose it is a safer way to finish, since the people aren't really trying to 'race' in. That can get ugly. Just don't ask me how I know. :cool:

pandorasboxx
Jan. 10, 2008, 10:22 PM
Yes, technically both LD's and endurance are races. But even with the different criteria, many consider LD's more of a "training" step rather than the final goal and so the racing aspect is frowned upon.

Then again there are some who consider the LD their final goal and have no problem with racing. I also believe there are also some regions who do not consider BC or Top Ten recognition for LD's but simply record a finish.

I did top 10 in an LD once inadvertently. We were entered for the 50 but dropped down as the trail had really deteriorated by the 2nd day of the race. The rain, the hills and mud didn't phase my horse and we just stayed steady motoring along. I was shocked to have my name called for a top ten prize during dinner. It was fun but my goals were fixed on doing well in 50's so never really considered it significant beyond the cool gift bag I received.

The nice thing about distance riding is that everyone can set their own goals and concentrate on what is important to them.

Auventera Two
Jan. 11, 2008, 09:36 AM
The nice thing about distance riding is that everyone can set their own goals and concentrate on what is important to them.

That's what I love about this sport. And if your goals change from ride to ride, that's ok too. I know a couple people in our region who will never move out of LDs. I talked with one lady who said that she has a really bad hip and back and her horse is older. She loves the 25s and tries to improve her times but she'll never do a 50 because she physically can't. She likes to ride with newbies or people on young horses out for the first few times because she likes the companionship and she likes to mentor others. That's her calling in this sport.

Lately there's been a big debate about this on endurance.net. Some people think LDs and even 50s detract from the sport which was initially always 100 miles. They think that 100 milers are the only "true" endurance race. Then some people think the LDs and 50s attract more people and make the sport grow. It's a big controversy.

I guess my take on it is that it can be a race for you, or it doesn't have to be. But 50s or 100s could be the same thing. To finish is to win. If people only want to finish then they might take a full 12 hours to complete a 50 and only get the finish. I guess then they wouldn't be racing. If an LDer wants to strategize and WIN, then they would have to mange the time and the horse in such a manner that they could get to the finish line but also pulse down first, and therefore win. I guess it's just what you make it??? :)

Auventera Two
Jan. 11, 2008, 10:06 AM
Interesting info GTD. :) This season I want to do a couple more LDs and then try a 50 late in the season, next fall. The next year I want to be doing 50s only. Since I'm done with school, I will have the vacation time to be able to do it, which I didn't have this year. Do think that if people can or will only do 25s that they should just not compete at all, and just trail ride on their own time? Say if they know they're doing LD today, and 10 years from now they'll still be doing LD? I guess I have mixed feelings about it. I don't know enough about the history of LDs to say much. From what little I do know, it seems that the 25s and 35s would be very beneficial to new riders, young horses, older folks, etc.

saratoga
Jan. 11, 2008, 11:05 AM
I have a friend who races LDs. She is not interested in doing 50s- she is doing endurance only to race- her motto is "why would I pay the entry fee and travel all that way just to ride." She gets pissed off if she doesn't win and I think she knows that winning 50s is a whole different ball game, so she will always be in the LD.

Just Wondering
Jan. 11, 2008, 12:27 PM
I have a friend who races LDs. She is not interested in doing 50s- she is doing endurance only to race- her motto is "why would I pay the entry fee and travel all that way just to ride." She gets pissed off if she doesn't win and I think she knows that winning 50s is a whole different ball game, so she will always be in the LD.

Wow. The AERC motto "To finish is to win".

Auventera Two
Jan. 11, 2008, 12:57 PM
I have a friend who races LDs. She is not interested in doing 50s- she is doing endurance only to race- her motto is "why would I pay the entry fee and travel all that way just to ride." She gets pissed off if she doesn't win and I think she knows that winning 50s is a whole different ball game, so she will always be in the LD.

In a way, she has a point. With a $50 entry fee, plus another $150 for gas and travel, plus your AERC membership fees, why would you want to pay all that, and drive all the way, camp over night, etc. just to do a trail ride? Especially if you have a nice long trail right in your back yard where you can ride for free? Which I would think she does, because she has to condition somehow.

As long as she isn't hurting her horse, and he's finishing strong and healthy, does it hurt to race? I can see where she'd get a sense of satisfaction and accomplishment to win, and to improve her horse's fitness and skills. Maybe her being "pissed off" is a feeling of defeat since she didn't meet her goal? Maybe she doesn't know any other way to express her dissapointment in herself, or in the conditions then to get angry.

I will happy pay my $$$ to enter an LD just for the training and experience. I love camping over and the whole experience of waking up at 3 a.m. to horses crunching hay and the 100 milers rustling around their campsites. I'm fairly competitive and I will enjoy the competiveness of the sport when me and my horse are ready to move up a notch. But for now I'm very happy to just have fun and a good experience. I've had to pay double the funds because I've been taking 2 horses and my friend rides the other one. That's a huge expense but I've wanted the youngster to have her babysitter out there with her the first few times.

I love the motto to finish is to win. I think each time you get on the trail it's a personal journey with your own personal goals and accomplishments along the way. I don't think you "lose" because you don't cross the finish first or pulse down first. I think in this sport the only real losers are those who harm themselves and/or their equine partner in the name of winning.

Auventera Two
Jan. 11, 2008, 03:17 PM
That's interesting. So this is assuming that the person doing LDs is going to move on to endurance. If they are planning to stay in LDs forever, you would still say that racing in LDs is not good? It's good to hear your POV because the goal for my horse is eventually 1 day 100s. Not that I would "race" in LDs anyway, because I sure don't plan on it. I'm trying to take things slow and easy with this horse so she doesn't get burned out or injured.

Are you defining "race" as gallop? I interpret the term "race" as having a strategy for everything to get you down the trail faster. Not necessarily running down the trail. But you know, when you stop at a water trough, what to do to encourage the horse to drink as quickly as possible so you're not wasting an extra 2 minutes while he snoops around and smells poop. Or how to arrange packs so you can get a drink or a power bar at a working trot without slowing your gait. Things like that. To me, that's what a long distance race is. Strategy over the miles so every minute is utilized to the fullest. Not necessarily galloping wildly down the trail passing people in the weeds.

It's an interesting subject, I've been following the posts on ridecamp too. People have drastically different views on this.

Auventera Two
Jan. 11, 2008, 03:49 PM
I meant that the real "race" of endurance is strategy all along the trail and implementing your plan that you developing at home.

My mare will drink at every puddle and water stop along the way. She's very much concerned with packing in the goods so she doesn't die out there. :lol: If we're walking, she'll grab every tall weed and stick she can manage. She will stop at every mud puddle, and ask for a drink from my bottle when I take one. She only wants to dabble in it, flip her lips around, and take a sip though. Part of that is being inexperienced and being bored. I've encouraged her to stop and drink every time she wants to but I suspect as we regularly do longer distances, she'll wise up and figure out what she really needs. You said that you cannot make a horse drink. You're right about that, but I think you have to approach it aimed with a plan. With my horse, I know if I allow her to get next to another horse and "talk" that she'll forget about drinking. So I try to go to one end of the tank so she'll just drink and not flirt. Again, I'm sure that improves with mileage.

That's a good point about the horse learning the length of a normal ride. They're creatures of habit and it seems like they know when they're approaching the end of their ride. I rode with a lady one time last year who normally goes about 10 miles every time she rides. Her horse dwindled down and was tired after we did about 8 miles, and by the time we got back to the trailer he was all used up. If she conditioned him to longer and longer distances, the first 10 miles would seem like only the warmup for him.

Romantic Rider
Jan. 11, 2008, 10:35 PM
You are so lucky, A2. Well, at least as far as Mom and I are concerned. Our mares are soooo picky. My big Anglo mare will not drink the first loop, and usually not till the end of the second. She usually doesn't eat well until the third vetcheck, though I can occasionally get her to eat grass along the trail. Sometimes I wonder how she does it. She's a good endurance horse, but I have to wonder if she could be better if she'd eat. I rode with this one lady and a horse she was leasing for several rides last year. And I was so jealous of her horse. He seemed to drink gallons at every tank, and ate every chance he got, he always carried a mouthful a grass, it was too cute.

When we first got into endurance, we were warned that if we wanted to do longer distances, not to let our horses get stuck going shorter distances. Well, this year I'm going to try a 50 with my little LD mare, and a 100 with my big 50 mile mare. My little Sugar has done um... eight or nine LD's, I'm hoping she won't have too tough a time going up to fifty. But the big mare has been doing 50's for years, I don't know how she'll take a hundred. After last year, I can say that I love 50's. Ld's are nice, but they don't really even seem like an endurance ride any more. What, done after only two loops? 50's require such a different mind set.

Atheta21
Jan. 12, 2008, 03:50 PM
So if you are wanting to move to 50's how many 25's would you do? If you want to move to 100's how many 50's would you do?

Atheta21
Jan. 12, 2008, 09:28 PM
I have done 2 25's and I noticed my horse seems to know how long the ride is already. I am worried that if I don't move to the 50's soon then he will get comfortable with the 25's and the then first 50 will be upsetting to him. Does this make since? What do you think about this idea?

Romantic Rider
Jan. 13, 2008, 02:06 PM
A full season of LD means completely different things to different people. To us, it was seven rides. To one rider I know, it was like 21 LD rides. But I would say a full season usually means much more than 3-5, as most people I know go to a ride at least every other weekend when they can. Then, like I said, I've heard people advocate only a very few LD, so your horse doesn't get used to them.