Saturday, July 12, 2008

The Flamingo Approaches

Last Sunday, Aaruba and I put in our last long ride before the Pink Flamingo Classic endurance ride, where we hope to complete the 30-mile LD on Day 1 and the 25-miler on Day 2. We started around 9:00 a.m., decked out with four Easyboots and his new set of interference boots to boot (sorry, couldn't resist).

We started out with 16 hilly miles through Idaho's farmland, enjoying 85 degree weather and a nice breeze. Aaruba was a bit reluctant to take on the same old slopes again -- we've used the beginning of this route a bit too often lately for our hill workouts -- but perked up when he discovered that we were going on into more interesting territory. He worked up a good sweat and was ready to swig four gallons of water by the time we returned to In the Night Farm. I left him with a loosened girth and a flake of hay while I ran inside to grab a snack of my own.

45 minutes later, we hit the road again. Both the weather and Aaruba got hotter (though in rather different senses), and we finished the ride with some strong canters and a brisk trot to the finish line, where Aaruba pulsed down to 60 in exactly 5 minutes. A quick CRI confirmed what his general attitude indicated: he still had plenty of gas in the tank.

Nevertheless, 26.5 miles was enough. I hosed Aaruba down, then released him in his paddock with his buddy CJ, who supervised his rapid transition from gray to buckskin.

The Pink Flamingo is set for July 26-27. Unfortunately, this isn't the best timing, as I'll be on vacation and unable to ride all next week. Aaruba and the rest of our menagerie will be in good hands while I'm gone, and I'm confident that he'll be fit for the challenge despite the long break.

We'll get in a few workouts to loosen him up and burn off some steam between my return and the race, but I'll bet he's a firecracker on that first morning! I'll have to work hard at pacing him so he doesn't blow his energy too soon.

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Related Posts
Turning Pink: 2008 Pink Flamingo Classic, Day One
Tickled Pink: 2008 Pink Flamingo Classic, Day Two
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4 comments:

Mrs Mom said...

Hey I like the New Look there on Aruba post-ride... ;)

Cant wait to hear how you guys do at the Flamingo!

Ashley said...

Heh...I know the post-ride gray-to-buckskin method all too well. Aren't gray horses so much fun? :) Good luck at Flamingo!

Shana said...

I am impressed at your training rides - and a little jealous you get to go SO FAR ;) Sounds like great prep for a 2-day adventure. I will be watching for your ride story (drool) Have a great time! The time off may even be good for him in the interim.

enlightenedhorsemanship said...

so when you return from your vacation, will Aaruba be as if shot from a cannon?
Hang on! I'll be offline when you do your ride, so I"m wishing you safety and good luck now.