2016 Ontario Ride N Tie Championships0
On October 1, 2016 the Ontario Competitive Trail Riding Association (OCTRA) hosted their provincial Ride n Tie championship race in the Dufferin Forest just north of Orangeville.
This year’s race covered a 20km (12 mile) course through the trails of the Dufferin Forest. 5 teams set out to tackle the challenging trail with the top 3 team finishing fairly close to one another. Ashley Tomaszewski and her brother Alex riding Splash won the race with a time of 2:08:00. Coming in a close second with a time of 2:18:00 was Susan Winmill and Caitie Ciampaglia with Traverston Batique. Third place went to Alana McDougall, Jessica Davis and Distinctly Western finishing with a time of 2:33:00. Fourth place was the mother and son team of Kevin and Jolanda Silk with Ace’s Night Hawk in a time of 3:15:00 and rounding out the board with fifth place was Linda Klarner, Sarah Cuthbertson and I’m No Angel++ with a time of 3:21:00. A big thank you goes out to OCTRA for sponsoring ride t-shirts for participants, ride management and volunteers as well as Sue Downing for sponsoring the awards.
What is Ride n Tie you ask? Ride n tie teams are made up of two humans (one rider and one runner) and one horse with a goal to complete a marked course and cross the finish line first. Sounds simple enough. One team member starts out running, the other starts on the horse and rides down the trail as far as they think their partner can run (or walk!). At that point the rider stops, dismounts, ties the horse to a tree or fence post and continues down the trail on foot. The team member who started on foot gets to the horse, unties it, mounts, and rides to catch their partner up ahead. The team continues in this leap frog fashion, alternating riding and running at strategic points, playing to their strengths and weaknesses.
Ride n Tie really gives you an appreciation and respect for the horse considering the miles traveled over the varying topography. It is strategy, teamwork and stamina – a reason to get in shape, to be a better rider and to help your horse. Factor all the strengths and weaknesses of two runners and one horse, along with weather conditions and the topography of the course, and you can understand why Ride ‘n Tie is as much mental as physical. This is why such a growing number of runners and riders are joining the sport of Ride n Tie.
What is great about Ride n Tie is that anyone can do it! Teams are made up of anyone from siblings, parents and children, partners and spouses, best friends and even non-riders and non-runners. In fact, the team that won this years’ provincial championship was made up of a rider and a marathon runner who does not do any regular riding!
If you are looking to challenge yourself in a different way, spice up your running routine or just try a new sport, check out the fast-growing sport of Ride N Tie! For more information and events calendar, please visit the Ontario Competitive Trail Riding Association website at http://octra.on.ca/.