Bendigo horse riders win Granite Rock 80km endurance event

TOUGH: Vincent Comer and Angela Nicholls compete in the 80km endurance ride. Picture: ROB FEATONBY

TOUGH: Vincent Comer and Angela Nicholls compete in the 80km endurance ride. Picture: ROB FEATONBY

TWO Bendigo horse riders and their steeds showed great stamina as they led the field home in the recent equestrian endurance competition at Lexton.

Vincent Comer and Angela Nicholls rode side-by-side to take out their divisions of the 80km Granite Rock event.

Comer - who runs the Campaspe Valley Arabians stud in Axedale - won the heavyweight title on Aloha Zabit, completing the distance in 6:28 hours.

Nicholls, who rides for Comer and was competing in only her second 80km  endurance test, was victorious in the lightweight section aboard Miss Pasha.

Adding to the celebrations, both were given awards for the Best Conditioned Horse in their divisions.

Comer said the placings were not of great importance.

"The motto in the sport is, to complete is to win'."

Endurance riding is a long-distance test of fitness and horsemanship, with hours of training needed to ensure both human and animal build up the required strength and conditioning.

Horse health is carefully monitored throughout a ride and entrants can be asked to withdraw if their mounts are under duress.

The pinnacle of the sport in Australia is the annual Tom Quilty Cup, to be held this October in Western Australia.

As well as competing in endurance events for about three decades, Comer also breeds, trains and sells Arabians to national and international buyers.

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