What is Endurance Riding?
Endurance riding is a chance to ride over open country, along a specified route, over a set distance with specific speed requirements. You will be issued with the route a few days before your competition is a which you will need to study carefully, so that you can plan your ride pace to ensure you finish in the required time. There will be checkpoints along the route at which stewards will record your competitor number, and most competitive rides require your horse/pony to be vetted before and after the ride. Final scores are based on speed of completion as well as fitness of horse/pony calculated by heart rate. Highest score wins!
Pony Club works closely with the three governing bodies for Endurance (EGB, SERC & ILDRA) to provide members with plenty of opportunities to take part in the sport, as well as running some of their own events.
There are five levels of endurance within the Pony Club, as shown in the table below which also shows eligibility criteria. Riders can simply enjoy taking part in organised endurance rides or can aim for Regionals and Championships!
Riders wanting to take part in Regional rides must complete at least one ride at the same level beforehand, and two rides at the same level (or above) if wanting to take part in the Championships. More details about these events can be found on their own pages.
How Do I Get Involved?
Pony Club members can take part in various different organised rides. These can be branch/centre organised rides (check the Endurance Training and Events page for upcoming events) or EGB rides.
Pony Club members can obtain Club membership with EGB free of charge, which allows you to take part in Pleasure Rides and Novice GERs (these rides range from between 20-50km so suitable for members wanting to qualify for Novice, Intermediate AND Open PC Endurance). If you are then wanting to take part in an EGB ride, you will have to purchase ‘Temporary day membership’ (£10) and entry to the ride through the EGB website.
At Novice GERs, the horse/pony will undergo a veterinary check before and after the ride where the vet will check for soundness and heart rate.
Both EGB Pleasure rides and Novice GERs can count as qualifying rides for PC Regionals and Championships.
A Grassroots (under 20km) class is held each year at the Pony Club Endurance Championships. You only need to have completed one qualifying ride to enter! Although it’s not a Championships class, it’s still an amazing opportunity to take part and experience the atmosphere.
As well as Endurance rides, you can keep your pony fit and ready for competitions by taking part in The Great Pony Club Hacking Challenge. Sponsored by Dodson & Horrell, members receive a certificate and D&H prize on completion of each milestone.
For frequently asked questions, please see the FAQs on page 29 in the Pony Club Endurance Rulebook, which can be viewed below or purchased here
If you want to get involved in rides, or organise an Endurance event, a list of contacts by Area who will be able to assist you can be found here