Would you like to...
You can do all this and more with us at ILDRA (Irish Long Distance Riding Association). Our riders enjoy access to many private estates, forestry and other land not normally open to the public and are open to both members and non-members (although entries are pre-booked, online only)
This year, to welcome back returning members and encourage new ones, we want to help riders get themselves and their horses back in shape, because neither rider nor horse will be having a good time if they are not fit enough. To that end, we are offering a ‘3 for 2 offer’ on Vetted Pleasure Rides between February and August (inclusive).
read on for all the info on this offer and hints on how to get started...
A Vetted Pleasure Ride does exactly what it says on the tin - you can enjoy a short ride without the time and speed constraints of a Competitive Trail Ride but with the added bonus of getting a chance to try the vetting procedure.
Every year we get many riders who would love to canter along those beaches at the St. Patrick’s Coast Ride but feel (probably accurately) that their horses are not fit enough for the full 20 mile loop - if you are one of those riders, this is your chance to change that. You will be able to see the improvement in your horse’s fitness levels through monitoring heart rates and recovery times at successive vettings and gradually increase the distances you are able to cover comfortably, with each ride you do.
We hope to offer Vetted Pleasure Rides at most of our events between now and the end of August (excluding our Clandeboye Charity Ride). To take advantage of the 3 for 2 offer all you need to do is enter and pay for 2 Vetted Pleasure Rides. Before you enter your 3rd Vetted Pleasure Ride you need to claim your free Vetted Pleasure Ride by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org (or use the contact form on the web site) - we will allocate a credit your account so when you enter you will not be charged.
We have planned rides at Cam Forest, Baronscourt, Florencecourt and Shane’s Castle already and hope to have more at other locations as the season progresses.
Terms and Conditions are not too onerous -
Cost - £20 per Vetted Pleasure Ride (i.e. 3 VPRs for £40)
The offer does not include Competitive Trail Rides or non-vetted Pleasure Rides.
Membership - not needed - open to members and non-members
Horse registration - not needed
Age - riders must be 5 years and over (under 14 must be accompanied by an adult)
Horses must be 4 years and over (1st Jan)
Distance - ride distances vary depending on the venue, but generally start at a minimum of approx. 6miles/10km, with a maximum of 20miles/32km
Speed - there are no compulsory speeds for Pleasure Rides, but an advisory speed of 5mph/8kph minimum - 8mph/13kph maximum is recommended
Veterinary procedure - you need to present your horse untacked for vetting, before and after the ride - as it is not a competitive ride, veterinary criteria (heart rates, recovery time etc) are not mandatory, but as a guide, your horse’s heart rate should have recovered to not more than 64bpm within 30 minutes after the end of the ride
3 for 2 offer on Vetted Pleasure Rides
Aim to present your horse for vetting within the first hour of the ride - ideally after the CTR riders have gone and before most of the Pleasure Riders arrive.
Make sure the organiser gets a note of your start and finish times.
Most of our venues do not have warm-up facilities so you should spend the first 10 minutes or so of your ride in an active walk, before (if conditions allow) moving up to a steady trot.
The vetting procedure is straightforward - your horse’s heart rate is taken by the vet (or official) and you will be asked to trot your horse 30m out and back to check for soundness. At the end of the ride there will be other metabolic checks and a second heart rate will be taken after the trot up
Make sure you bring plenty of water to cool off and wash your horse down at the end of the ride - this is usually the most effective way to reduce the heart rate prior to vetting.
Don’t worry if you don’t have (or can’t use) a stethoscope to take the heart rate - there will always be an endurance nerd enthusiast nearby only too keen to help - just ask!
3 for 2 offer on Vetted Pleasure Rides