Endurance Riding at its Finest

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    Top-caliber long-distance competitors from across Canada and the United States are finishing up at the Rocky Mountain Challenge/2008 Canadian Nationals being held in Alberta, Canada, July 31 – August 4. Showcasing the equestrian sports of competitive trail riding, endurance and ride n’ tie, the event has attracted over 200 competitors and their horses.

    The Canadian Nationals are hosted every two years and feature eight prestigious events over a five-day period with courses varying from 25 – 100 miles. The events are sanctioned by the Arabian Horse Association, the American Endurance Ride Conference and the Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI).

    “The Rocky Mountain Challenge is very excited to be hosting AHA, AERC and FEI sanctioned events,” says Sandra Nielsen, the 2006 Alberta team Chef d’ Equipe, who is also spearheading this year’s Rocky Mountain Challenge, a non-profit organization formed to host the event. “The 100 mile FEI event in particular, offers international competitors an opportunity to qualify for the Worlds in 2010.”

    All the exciting action is taking place on an active cattle ranch, Red Deer River Ranch, that was established in 1890 and boasts towering spruce, aspen and pine trees in the picturesque foothills between Brown and Williams creek. A destination resort, Red Deer River Ranches offers true Canadian wildlife viewing on it and its neighboring 50,000 acres, not to mention the incredible terrain challenge that the trail committee put together.

    For more information and an update on the ongoing competition, visit www.canadiannationals.org.

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