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Reports and Picture gallery >> Archive for 2009 and 2010

Reports and Picture Gallery Archive for 2009 and 2010

  This is the archive page for 2009 and 2010 reports. For 2008 and 2007 reports, click here  

2010 Reports

Group AGM and Trophy Dinner

The 2010 Annual General Meeting for the group was held on Wednesday, October 27th at the Whitemill Inn, Whitemill. There are two changes in the committee membership for 2011. Following the retirement of Tracey Cordon as Treasurer, Eva Franstam was elected as the new Treasurer.  Harry Adshead was also elected to the committee.

The Trophy Dinner was held on Friday, November 19th at the Whitemill Inn, Whitemill. The dinner was well attended. Click here for a list of trophy and award winners.

DeCymru EGB Gower Gambol Ride, Saturday and Sunday, September 11th and 12th.

Hannah, my step-daughter, and I thoroughly enjoyed our Pleasure Ride at the recent EGB Gower Gambol ride, on Sunday 12th September.

This was a two day ride, so I helped out on Saturday as a Vet Writer and thoroughly enjoyed myself.  Nice to be of service!  The weather was also good.


Pictures by Graham Smith Photography at www.allabouttheimage.co.uk 


Sunday soon came around and off we set on our PR!  I was riding my five year old mare, Romizzia of Grangeway (a.k.a. Zia!) and Hannah rode my Jimmy Mac.  The views were great - hills, sea and beach, and I did not mind at all that the H & S chap had spoken and did not allow us on the beach that day. The weather was lovely so most of humankind were heading to the beach! We had to ride down quite a busy road and I was over the moon with Zia as she was fine - it is the busiest road I have ridden her along!  Like I said, everyone was aiming for that beach!!  My young mare was superb so that was the main thing.  We can go on any beach, any time, tides permitting!

Thanks to everyone who helped and was involved in organising Gower Gambol, especially the farrier who kindly put a front shoe back on Zia allowing us to go on the ride! The views of the coast from the hills were amazing and made for some great photos courtesy of the Ride Photographer.  All the varied terrain, hills and scenery were wonderful to ride on and great experience for Zia who will be starting endurance next year. Both our horses' ears were pricked the whole way round and you could tell they were enjoying it as much as we were! We both really enjoyed our day, and would love to come back and do it again next year, perhaps to do a competitive ride!

Alex Nicholls and Hannah Cooke

Mid Wales Pleasure Ride in aid of 'Schoolchildren for Children' Charity, 25th July, 2010.

What a superb ride and day we had!  The weather was also kind to us.
Many thanks must go to Val Price-West and Heather Davies and all their helpers who kindly put on this ride for us. They all gave up their day (and more time to mark and unmark the routes!) so that we could all have a great time. Everyone did a brilliant job and the smiling and friendly faces were much appreciated. The route was very interesting, with varied terrain, it was very well marked and there were 13 or 18 mile routes.
Hannah and I did the 13 mile route as I was on my 5 year old mare, Romizzia of Grangeway a.k.a. Zia, and Hannah, my step-daughter, was riding dear Jimmy Mac, who is always a good boy. There were quite a few uphill pulls, so I decided that 13 miles was fine for them both.  We loved all the puddles and water - great fun.
I believe there were 42 riders in total so that was good ride support. Val even made me a lovely cup of tea at the end so that was very good service.
I was thrilled with young Zia who did not put a foot wrong and we also cantered over the open mountain.  She was good when I opened one wicket gate and she manoeuvered well and was patient.  She was brilliant when I got off to do a gate.  My legs felt like the proverbial 'horse legs' so I had a bit of a walk first and when I came to get back on board she stood stock still and I got my derriere and both feet in the stirrups and she still stood stock still so I was VERY impressed and chuffed.  We have had a spot of trouble before when re-mounting as she has tended to jiggle around a bit!!
Once again, our great thanks to Val and all the ride helpers. You all did a first class job!
Alex Nicholls and Hannah Cooke

Pen Ddol Y Gader Ride, May 22 and 23.

This ride went off successfully in excellent weather. 17 riders took part on Saturday and 34 on the Sunday. A big thank you to Karin, Hilary and all the helpers for organizing the rides.

Penny Rawnsley

Penny, Anita and Alex starting 50km

We have received the following emails:

From: Anita Gordon.

Just wanted to say a big thank you to everyone yesterday for such a lovely ride.  We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves, even with all the dramas that seemed to be happening.  I was very sorry that Alex retired, but it in the heat like we had yesterday, it was really important that Jimmy's welfare came first. Happily the vet pronounced him fine.  Anyway, all's well that end's well, as they say.

From: Christine Clinch

Many thanks for a lovely ride on Sunday. Despite the heat there were refreshing breezes to keep one going & helpful people to put one right on course ( my map reading is hopeless) & share water( Harry was very generous). Theresa was a good companion & Beau was not too pleased when she & her horse went a different way but after the loop I met up with Anita & had her company the rest of the way. It was all very enjoyable & hope it all went well for you .    







2009 Reports

Man versus Horse Race – Saturday 13th June, 2009

Report by Alex Nicholls

We have now participated in this race several times and we always have great fun and a great day out. There is a trot up at the start, a vet-gate in the middle – this year we had a ten minute hold – and vetting at the end, the rules being much the same as EGB vetting rules.

This unique sporting event is held annually in the small town of Llanwrtyd Wells, Britain’s smallest town, and involves human runners (individuals and relay teams) against horses, over 22 miles with a total of 3000 feet of ascent. So, in a nutshell, the course is challenging, humans and equines need to be fit and well-managed, especially in hot weather.

Getting ready

The runners

The start

There is a mass start for the horses at 11.15am, the human runners leaving at 11am, and this year I was right up front, behind the pace car, driven by Jackie Brown, the ride organiser.  It was exciting being right up there at the front!  We did a spanking trot along the road and at the start there are crowds to cheer you on your way, lots of clapping and the atmosphere is fantastic. You just can’t help a great big smile with all this support  and encouragement. There is also a tannoy, announcing everything, so you need a good horse!!!

This year was the 30th anniversary of Man versus Horse and there were 45 horses and hundreds of runners. My husband, Edward, did his usual excellent crewing job for us, helped by John and Eva, who also thoroughly enjoyed the day and said they had learnt a great deal. Jimmy Mac came tenth this time, so I was very happy with that.

Approaching vet gate

Cooling down

Crew area

The route involves stony tracks, very hilly terrain, some road work, grassy hills, some boggy going and some fields.  Apparently, there are seventy gates en route and they are all open!!!  Loads of stewards and other helpers along the course offer you and your horse water too.

Last crew point

And away

The finish

Jimmy Mac’s respective heart rates at the start and finish were 36 and 52. The day was quite hot but it has been hotter in previous years!!  At the end we charged through the river, then had a short canter on a grassy track, fast trot on a short bit of tarmac, then cantered over the finish line! 

Roll on June 2010!      Alex Nicholls, Tregaron

Pen Ddol Y Gader Ride on May 16th and 17th.

We received the following email from Anita Gordon:

Just wanted to say thank you to everyone involved in organising the ride on Sunday.  Despite the grotty weather there was still a good turnout.  It was great to have the vetting area covered in bark, no more treading on stones - good idea!  I have to say that I had a wonderful ride and that we, (me and my horse Ibn), loved all the cantering on the open moor.  Hope you can run it again.

Thanks, Anita Gordon.”

And the following email from Chris Jones:

What a wonderful ride Hilary, Karin and their helpers put on for us.  It was a real treat to be off over the mountain with plenty of cantering.  Shame they didn't organise the weather a bit better but no-one can do anything about that.  Do please do it again next year!  There is so much work involved and very difficult for already busy people to do!  Thanks again for all your hard work.”

Twm Sion Cati Pleasure Ride on May 24th at Llyn Brianne dam and Cwmnant Pleasure Ride on May 30th at Tregaron.

Several members attended these successful rides organised by the Mid and North Wales group. A big thank you to Heather Davies and Pat Conn for organising these rides.

Click here to read Alex Nicholl's ride report from The Easter Egg Ride on Easter Monday, April 13. (Mid and North Wales group).

To read the Offa's Dyke Newsletter for April 2009, click here to down load it in Adobe pdf format (1.1MB)

Valentine Ride report by Elaine Perry.

Following what seemed like months of frozen ground and snow, the morning of the Valentine ride dawned mild and calm. This, however, didn’t really reflect the mood of Pauline my riding companion that day. It was the first time that she and Haleem, her part Arab young-ster, had travelled to any event and all of my reassuring remarks that ‘this is meant to be a pleasure ride’ didn’t really help to calm her nerves. 

We arrived safely at the venue just 15 minutes behind schedule due to me missing the turning in New Inn as a result of endless chattering and sharing our life histories of ‘horsey experiences’ – What an idiot! I’ve ridden the Valentine ride now for the past 3 years, I really do know my way!

At the venue we were greeted by friendly faces as we collected our numbered bibs and  with bandages and boots removed from the horses, we were soon on board and ready for the off.

Once we headed past the start, Pauline and Haleem settled down well, I’d like to think that it was because of the calming influence of my thoroughbred mare, Shalar, who really was very well behaved, or, as Pauline remarked “gosh, she’s very sensible isn’t she?” The jury is still out on that though, as like most horses she has her moments too.

Curiosity soon got the better of Haleem and he couldn’t resist turning to look at a pair of horses and riders that were coming up from behind. He did think that it would also be a great idea to join them as they overtook us and went on ahead. Pauline and I decided that at his early stage of training he needed to learn that just because there was a horse in front doesn’t mean that you have to run and catch it up. By the end of the ride, (we completed the 10 mile) he was beginning to understand that it’s ok for horses to pass you and sometimes you pass them.

The nice thing about the Valentine ride is that there are lots of places to have a nice safe run. This we enjoyed immensely, both horse and rider alike. The views were great! If you can chat about the weather on a ride, then you know that you are settling down!

All too soon it seemed, we turned for home on the short route. Haleem and Pauline had a really good first outing. So much so, that the Group has recruited a new member. Yes she’s joined EGB – and so has Haleem! The rosette was a bonus for Pauline, for me, it was the delicious piece of cake.

Well done ride organisers. We really had a good ride!


Alex Nicholls on Jimmy Mac at the Valentine ride

The Fairly Big Ride 

Harry Adshead gave a brilliant talk and slide show at the Whitemill Inn, Carmarthen on Wednesday, February 25th. 36 members and friends attended.

Thank you, Harry, for such an enjoyable and memorable evening. 

Harry and Lisa now have a website describing their epic horseriding journey from Wales to Jordan from April 2004 to September 2005. Click here to access the website.

A South and West Wales group meeting was held on Wednesday, January 21st at the Whitemill Inn, Carmarthen.

This was a successful meeting attended by 17 members and friends.