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Tuesday, May 12, 2009


Even though I resolutely promised myself NOT to talk about it - it looks like the Tevis cup race may be on for me this year.

I was planning on doing the Virginia City 100 in September. The feedback I've gotten regarding the VC100 is that it is a tough ride PHYSICALLY with the potential for lots of lameness, tendon, and leg issues. One person stated that if she had a horse with ANY soundness issues she absolutely would not take it to VC100. That's good enough for me. Farley isn't going. Tevis is suppose to be metabolically more challenging, but not quite as physically challenging as the Tevis. VC100 has lots of slow gradual LONG hills, while Tevis is more technical. It sounds like my chances of finishing the Tevis are better than VC100.

Here are my requirements before I do the Tevis:

1. Farley must finish both days at Wild West absolutely sound and strong. This is a technical ride so this should test her soundness.

2. I need to continue to have ZERO tack issues with my saddle (update - the white hairs don't seem to have anything to do with my current tack set up).

3. Farley must finish Mount Diablo on June 27 strong and fast. Last year this ride was HOT. Hopefully it's another hot ride. I need to know that she doesn't have metabolic issues that haven't yet emerged.

4. I need to preride the last half of the Tevis trail prior to the ride.

So yes - the Tevis might be on. I'm finished talking about it. I will allow myself to talk about it AFTER each ride I complete but then I'm DONE. I REFUSE to be the type of person that OBSESSES over this. I will just do it.


  1. Yeah I obsess! But that's really exciting and can't wait to hear more!!!

  2. Tevis is something you HAVE to obsess about! I think that's one of the main requirements for entry actually. =)

    If you can swing it with your schedule, I cannot recommend the Educational ride enough. Looks like they are full for the first day, but the second day you'll ride the last 1/3rd from Foresthill to the finish in Auburn. That's June 21st.

    Also, doing at least one preride from Michigan Bluff to Deadwood and back would be very beneficial. So you get to see what the bigger (more gradual but longer) canyon is like as well. Email the 100-milers list - Kathy Sherman and/or Lucy probably have rides planned and would welcome company.

  3. Unfortunately I won't be able to do the educational ride. I know several people who have done the ride and I'm hoping they won't mind taking me and preriding some of the course. My aunt IS doing both days of the ed ride, so hopefully she'll have some good advice to pass along.

    I'll definately do the sections you reccomend, and the section after Foresthill. After Wild West I'll e-mail the list and see if anyone would be willing to let me tag along on some prerides. I only live a couple of hours away from the trail.

    I'll probably start obsessing about it AFTER wild west. If she comes through both days with a shiny gold star, then I'll probably enter Diablo and Tevis at the same time. If there's obvious work to be done after Wild West, I'll plan on doing the Tevis next year.

  4. That'd be totally awesome, but in the spirit of not obsessing, I won't pop up next month and bug you about "How's your Tevis training coming?!" ;)

    Fingers crossed for you and Farley!

  5. Uh huh....SUUURE you won't be talking about it anymore. I'm going to trust you on that...
    (tho you're welcome to write about any excitement after you actually go)

  6. If you haven't done a 100 before I'd recommend VC before Tevis. You only have a 50/50 chance at Tevis so don't even think of going if the horse is not 100% or hasn't been 100% on all of the rides this year - I see time and time again riders not finishing Tevis that had problems during the ride season prior and it is never a surprise that they don't make it, you need to go into that ride absolutely at 100%. The vetting is much stricter and there are many more vet checks at Tevis than at VC (and, VC's completion rate is much higher). Plus, Tevis has a LOT of downhill which can be really hard on a horse.

  7. Mel,
    Your civil war activities sound quite interesting and fun. Sounds like you have a pretty good handle on the Tevis Challenge. If you would like some more input check out my free video in

  8. nothing succeeds like obsession :) Keep your feet on the ground but keep reaching for the stars... sounds like you 've got a good strategy going in

    gp in mt

  9. Karen - I find your comment interesting and agree with a lot of it. I agree that it's probably easier to get a completion at VC than it is at Tevis, but I think that both rides are probably equally difficult for the horse. The vetting at Tevis is a lot stricter (VC being like a normal ride).

    I think part of the reason that the completion rates at Tevis are so low though is it attracts a lot of horse/rider teams that just aren't prepared to go that distance. A lot of people get caught up in the hype and "glory" of that ride and earning a buckle. They are maybe at that starting line a bit unprepared for what is ahead (this was me my first time there as well). Some of them get lucky and make it to Auburn, a lot of them don't. You also have a lot of horses that have some from a very significant distance, and may still be stressed from traveling.

  10. I hadn't considered that angle of it - Tevis would be less stressful for me in terms of travelling. I've never gone out of state with a horse before and it's a longer trip. For Tevis I would be "home" staying with my parents (Farley is there a lot and so she would be stressed less too) and then a short drive up to the trail.

    It sounds like any way you cut it, 100 miles is 100 miles and you have to respect the distance!

  11. C~

    Kathy just e-mailed me from the 100 mile list and we are going to try and get together at Wild West. It sounds like she would be willing to let me tag along for some tevis pre-riding.

  12. I'm pretty sure that obsessing is a requirement for distance riders. It certainly is for ME!

    And yes, I obsess about Tevis, knowing that my horse (and I) probably will only make it to one competition this year (if that) because of my unrelated personal issues (good-but-time-and-money-consuming stuff that will take my training time and money away). But I'm still aiming for Tevis down the trail.

    Maybe I'll see you there. It would be good. Meantime, I wish you good fortune and fair trails.


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