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NEWS > Endurance
Posted by National Admin on 03/09/2019.
Mandy Rayner, Zoe Chatfield and Narelle Cox Bein
Photography by Down Under Images

Wicked Wheatbelt Challenge Saw the Best of Endurance Shine in WA

The Wheatbelt Endurance Riders Incorporation (WERI) Wicked Wheatbelt Challenge CEI1* & CEI2* rides were recently held on Saturday, August 17th 2019.

The rejuvenation of CEI competition in Western Australia was brought about by the Acharon Challenge, held in Collie in May last year. It was the first international (CEI) ride held in Western Australia for five years; a tribute to the late 'West Coast Acharon' (affectionately known as 'Acky'), the stallion who was sadly laid to rest three years ago.

Last year’s ride was the preamble for the recent CEI2* event, hosted by WERI and held in Merredin, WA.

Rachell and Lienca Nell in the CEI2*120km ride

The Merredin ride, aptly named the Wicked Wheatbelt Challenge, saw 48 riders participating across national (CEN) and CEI events, with competition across distances of 10km to 120km.

The 80km CEI1* and 120km CEI2*, saw seasoned international competitors and strong domestic athletes new to CEI compete side by side.

A high completion rate for this competition is a testament to the hard work and excellent horse management proffered by the competitors: Sarah Dumbrell, Rachell and Lienca Nell, Norbert, Jane and Bec Radny.

The first-place position was taken out by Lienca Nell on 'Winjana Nardine', completing the course in 8:21:28. Lienca’s sister Rachell and 'Robmurty Jimminy' were only seconds behind in a tight finish.

Jane Radny, on 'Steel Poppy Regent', was awarded Best Conditioned Horse with a commendable time of 8:23:21.

Mother and daughter duo, Jane and Bec Radny CEI2* in the 120km ride, who's horses were awarded 'Best Conditioned Horse' and 'EA Best Managed Horse' respectively 

With Western Australia set to host the upcoming 2020 Tom Quilty Gold Cup, Australia’s prestigious National 160km event, the running of an international level event in Western Australia was a great opportunity to host a number of interstate officials and highlight what the West has on offer.

The Merredin ride saw Western Australia’s second-ever introduction to electronic competitor timing; this modernised system aided the smooth running of the event and will also be used as the timing system for the Quilty next year, to be held in Collie.

Given the resounding success of the weekend, Western Australia congratulates those involved in the running and organising of the Wicked Wheatbelt Challenge, particularly WERI and the events major sponsors the Department of Local Government, Sport and Recreation, ASPIRE and the Shire of Merredin.

Michelle Gorham riding 'Bling It On' in the 120km ride

It was a great opportunity for Western Australian Endurance riders to taste a CEI event. We know that it will not be the last of international competition in the West, with plans underway for a CEI3* in the near future.

Supplied by WERI Greenhills Ride Organiser, Cara Allan

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