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Preview: A horse named "MONK"

A horse named "MONK"

MONK is 10 year old CMK Arabian who competed in the World Equestrian Games in 2010. "Follow us in 2012"... MONK currently holds the North American record for the fastest time in the 100 mile event.. 6:53Hrs.

Updated: 2017-05-12T06:59:26.674-07:00


MONK's FaceBook Page


Have not posted here in awhile, all of the new posts have been to Monks Face Book page.

Please visit FEI Redhorse on FB if interested in our adventures.  This blog has served us well, it's just easier to do FB.

New post copied from FB. 

FEI Redhorse Facebook page has kinda taken the place of, which is still around, it was started at the beginning of our quest to make the WEG 2010 team, blog was started in 2008, as just a place to keep track of ride photos, it has served us well with many thousands of MONK fans, which seemed to peak just before the WEG in 2010.  

MONK had a major suspensory injury in 2012, trying out for a WEC competition, this was right after our ride at the Presidents Cup in Abu Dhabi.

He returned to competition after a two year rehab.  

MONK just turned 15 this year and has done well since his return to competition.  He seems to be as strong or stronger then ever.  Couple of highlights over the last couple of years, a win at VC100, a 8th and 5th place at Tevis, a win at 20MT FEI 75, 2nd and BC at Cache Creek, 3rd at AERC champ ride with a junior rider.

The 20MT ride was just to re qualify for FEI in case we decide to try for the 2018 WEG in NC.

But our main goal for 2017 will be the Tevis Cup, and keeping that goal in mind the wellbeing and soundness of MONK is paramount, so we keep a tight rein on how we ride unimportant rides😉

Our next ride is Mt Adams on May 20th, Anya Lieberman, a junior from Canada will be riding MONK in the 2star FEI ride, she will ride at weight and should be able to obtain her FEI Elite rider status with this ride.  Again, this ride is important for our WEG goals and Tevis fitness goals.


Stem Cell


Been a long time since writing anything down.  long story short, and I may of covered some of, this in previous posts, but sorry to say I don't go back and read them.So here goes:  Monk tore a left front suspensory back in 2012 at the Texas trials for a WEG in England.  They had a 1/4 mile of boggy trail that you had to use 10 times, and we are guessing that a rear end slip was the cause of the injury, but who knows.  He was lame and was pulled, thinking it was a right hind.A few days after the trials I took Monk to UC Davis in Ca.  He was not lame, they pocked and prodded and even did a acupuncture session.  We did a ultrasound as a part of the examination and found a tear mid suspensory on left front. Lots of options for treatment, we did them ALL...PRP, platelet rich plasma injectionsStem cell harvesting and treatmentsPlus lots of walking, and that is done from day ONE, 30 min a day, with gradual increase.,Part of the problem with the equine lower leg is that there is not much circulation.  More circulation means faster healing.  Besides the walking you can use laser and ultrasound.  I bought both andtreated MONK at least once a day and sometimes twice.We hand walked for the first few weeks and then switched to the quad..  I have a 1/10 mile track around the backyard, so round and round we went.Monk went back to UC Davis for regular visits, for treatments and progress reports on the healing process.As we walked and walked I started thinking about the large panel driving walkers.  I decided I would make my own, but instead of using corral panels I would use a light weight electrified panels to confine.  I started out with a small trailer, put some leveling feet on it, bought and tore down a treadmill and used the motor and controller.  After a month or so I had a working model, I only enclosed one of the six panels and started walking Monk it daily.  I set my iPhone up on the deck and aimed at the RDR (round d round) and watched him walk on the ipad, while I sat in my easy chair, RDR he went.Here are some pictures of our last trip to UC Davis.  My granddaughters got to go with, the older one, Marin was the designated photographer so no pictures of her.  Macy is the groom for today's adventure.Macy standing on trailer fender, making MONK pretty for the  Doctor.She makes my heart sing......The vet pulled off one of MONK's chestnuts, it was way cool for one, and gross for the other.Just say NO to drugs....All done...I think this was the 3rd time she put him on the scale....  it reads it KG..Grandpa in paying the bill, again.......So, MONK has been busy getting all healed up.  He works multiple hours in the RDR and gets lightly ridden a couple of times a week.  My plan is for him to spend another 30 days in the RDR and then back to Davis for a ALL CLEAR check and then gradually back to some real conditioning.  We are still looking forward to the WEG trails if MONK is up for it, but we won't know about that for some time.I have to say, that this adventure with MONK, both the good and the bad have been a great adventure.  What really came to mind was that when different things in your life cause you to choose to take one path or another it you usually do not notice or remember why that decision was made.  With the MONK adventures it always seems to be a very distinct.  This injury and the rehab process has brought me on another adventure with a new company we formed named 360 Equine LLC,I will start another blog for 360 Equine LLC with lots of pictures of the newest models.  This all started because of MONK's injury.  Website will be, email is, we also have a toll free number 888-858-4174 or text to 530-613-5324The 360 Equine equine exercisers will be trailer or ground mounted, and size will range from 45' and up.  Custom builds will be possible.  We have our own CNC Plasma so we can do custom ranch Logo's and paint scheme[...]

"The Perfect ride" Almost


WEC Texas 2012Hard to get excited about spending 5K and driving for four thousand miles to go to a ride.  But this ride is very special.  It is a ride where all the very best horses in the USA will be to via for a spot on the USA team to compete for a medal at the World Endurance Championship in the UK in August of this year.About 50 cents cheaper fuel then CA...Took me a least a whole week to pack the trailer to get ready to go.  Had some work done on the truck and got new batteries for the trailer, new air compressor to keep all of the tires properly inflated.  MONK and I hit the road on Thursday for the Saturday ride of the next week.  My plan was to drive about 8 hours a day doing 500 miles each day.  I tried to plan out places to stop but that never seems to work for me, especially if you are working on the 500 miles each day.  On the 2nd day of our travel "boom", flat tire, right rear on the trailer, luckily there was a place to pull over.  Ten minutes later we were back on the road, but pulled my back out a little putting the tire into the back of the truck.  Luckily it did not not hurt while I was driving.  On the third day I felt a little "something" and checked my mirrors. Left rear trailer tire appeared to have smoke coming off it.., I pulled over and got out.  All tires looked good.  Got back in the truck and took off again, again, smoke coming off the left rear trailer tire.  The third time I figured out what was going on.  The 25' electrical cord from the trailer had snaked it's way out of it's hiding place, got caught under the trailer tire which caused it to break, when it broke it whipped up and caught the knife valve on the sewage holding tank and broke it off causing the sewage to spill all over the highway appearing to be smoke.....  A long screwdriver pushed into the place where the handle used to be closed the knife valve and shut off the valve.  Seem like as soon as I had driven my 500 miles and we were full of fuel we found a super place to park for the night.  First night was in a real nice rest stop, had some green grass, very private and a few other people in motor home's parked.  The second night was at a fuel stop in New Mexico, we pulled way to the back of the dirt lot and parked.  I did not realize that we were at probably 7000 feet and that it get pretty cold at that elevation.  MONK did have a blanket on, but not his warm one.  When I got up in the morning I noticed that MONK was very much awake and looking at something near the fence line.  At first I could not see anything, I went to get his lead rope that I had looped through one of the loops on the side of the trailer, it was frozen solid.  I did manage to get to out and went to get MONK off of the high tie, he was still looking at something.  I looked in that direction and observed a person laying in the weeds not more then 50 yards from us.  I could see movement so knew they were not dead, I went and did a walk and some circles with MONK and observed that the person was a female with a dog.  She sat up and and started moving around. MONK enjoying the green grass in East Texas.We were on the road soon after but my thoughts were with that person sleeping in the weeds in freezing weather for hours and hours, wondering what there life must be like.No better way to appreciate YOUR life then to travel across the USA and see how other less fortunate people are living.  Actually I love to drive, gives a person lots of time to think.  We arrived at Ridecamp late Sunday, after some time finally found a place to park for the night until I found someone that knew what was going on.  I was the second rig to show up, the other person was from Utah.  The mileage to the camp was almost 2000 miles on the money.  Next day we got to do a little exploring but not on the race trail..  Basically had maybe 100 acres that we [...]

Presidents Cup 2012


Found some great pictures on Face Book, which I am downloading to MONK's blog...
Thanks Nicole, great pictures, as you can see I stole it and am using it as my own.......

This is Macy, who just turned 5 years old.  Her and her sister Marin are just a little "horse crazy"......

Presidents Cup, Abu Dhabi

2012-03-06T20:41:03.140-08:00 finished the ride with a average speed of 11.9mph and I think a ride time of 8:53. Our game plan was just to use this ride as a training ride for the upcoming WEC trails at the end of March.  Keeping in mind that if we get pulled at the Presidents Cup then there would be a manditory 60 day hold which would put us out of the running.Lots more photo's on this link: and I left with MONK in the 3 horse slant from Penn Valley, California, and headed towards LA on Saturday the 4th of February.  The person who was making all the flight arrangements for the horses gave us the name and address of a place to board MONK for the night somewhere near Santa Anita race track, as we had to be at Pet Jets on Saturday morning at 10am..  We met with Doug Swingley at Jet Pets where the horses are inspected by USDA and then loaded into a 3 horse container and then transferred to the Air Lines.  Once they are in quarantine, they cannot touch the ground until they reach the venue, where they will be in quarantine until the day of the event.Nancy and I got an unexpected tour of Abu Dhabi when we were approached by someone asking if we needed a cab.  Upon arrival at our final destination, the Mafrac Hotel, we were advised that the ride to the hotel should of only been 50 Dirham, not 150 Dirham..  We arrived at about 1am, were able to grab a few hours sleep and obtain the supplied rental car and meet Doug and the horses at the quarantine barn, which was about 30 minutes away, just as they pulled up at about 1pm..I was surprised at how tightly they squished the horses into the very nice enclosed van.  The horse were cross tied but could hardly even move their heads...  I am sure they were both glad to get out of the van and into a place with some more space...Fencing surrounds the quarantine barn.  You have to sign in and sign out, tempatures were taken both morning and night. This is the van that took the horses from the Airport to the quarantine barn, it is even air conditioned. This is the actual barn, I think there were about 10 stalls with running water for the two horses.The sand mountain in the background is man made, one dump truck at a time.  The big cage is for ONE lonely eagle.  Not sure what the mountain is going to be used for.  Nancy got to go for a drive to the top.  Parachuters are using it to catch some major updrafts...Restrooms and a small room for the Guards to rest.This is the control tower at the Endurance Village.,54.71524560006221Here is a link to a Google map  link to the Emirates Endurance Village.Doctor Andrew getting the required blood samples from MONK.  Dr. Andrew is from Australia and has been working with endurance horses in Abu Dhabi for over 10 years.These are two large outside paddocks is where we try and leave the horse during the day time.  The temperatures during the night get pretty chilly so horses come in and blanketed. Dr. Andrew, Doug and Christoph Shork talking about what a great haircut they gave Nash.....not.Nancy making sure MONK eats all his dinner.These are the IN and OUT gates.  Gate 1 is the OUT gate and has a timer there and lets riders go on the exact second.Here is the crewing area for the different teams.  You can see some of the local horses in the first area.  Most do not have any corrals of any type.This is the crewing area.  In other pictures you will see hundreds of water buckets and as many people.  The lanes that you see in front of you are where the electronic timing starts.  Each horse is fitted with a small transmitter that goes around their neck and must remain during the competition.  As you cool your horse to get the heart rate down you start walking your[...]

Abu Dhabi hair cut...


MONK getting cleaned up a little bit before Lindsay arrives to give him a hair cut..

Sounds like they do not allow blankets on the horses for his 20 hour flight to the UAE.  We decided to do a very minimum clip to help keep him warm and also save a little time while we are there.  So what you see will be very different then how he will race..   He will just have to suffer on the way home..

Lindsay and MONK do a test run to check tack, see video in another post.


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MONK goes to Abu Dhabi....


 Invitation for the H.H President of United Arab Emirates CupFEI CEI 3 ¶160Km, in Abu Dhabi on 11th February 2012

We received the invitation last Friday which was the 6th..  We had until Sunday to decide if we would accept or not.  The invitation said that horses would ship out of New York.  We did a accept with the condition that MONK would be shipped out of the West Coast.  Today we got a email giving a possible itinerary shipping out of LA on the 2nd and arriving in the UAE on the 4th, with stops and short layovers in Chicago, KY....

The invitation is for the topped ranked riders on the ranking list who have not been invited before. The invitation is for two horse and rider teams, plus one groom per horse.

Luckily MONK is in excellent condition.  We are headed for Reno this weekend where he will have 3 days of sand work.  Just some easy work along the shores of Lake Washoe...

Needless to say we are very excited at this opportunity and will keep holding our breath until we are on the plane.

See you in Abu Dhabi........   

New Brakes or NO Brakes


New Brakes!When you go fast and look good you must have the very best equipment and that includes brakes...  So, as a early Christmas gift to MONK I decided to try out his new fancy 3 ring Mylar bit, this is equivalent to the fancy brakes that you put on your Porsche, cross drilled rotors, carbon fiber pads etc...   Well it took some doing to get it on a headstall and adjusted but we did.To tell the truth I used this new setup on MONK's last outing to the farmland where we just cantered for 20 miles..  That is not really a good test as he really does not get to run.  When he is a BAD horse is when you are doing repeats and you let him run some, he thinks he should just be able to go as fast as he wants.  If you are strong enough to keep him from doing it, good for you, if not, you are going for a fast ride.Today we started doing some slow repeats.  I let him run a couple of times, it was almost like you were riding with nothing.  I took him down the big hill where I do sometimes let him run at top speed, well he took off like a rocket and it was not easy to get him back.  I got him slowed to a mild roar and headed back to the barn.I then tried the bit that I use on all the other horses, just something simple and we went back out..  Boy what a difference...Should of put a picture of the bit that I usually use on him, but it is just a jointed Kimberwick.  He worked much better in the Kimberwick that was solid and not jointed.[...]

River of Time.....


Someone posted this on facebook.  For some reason it really hit home with me, I think mainly because I am getting older and time seems to be going by so fast.  I feel very blessed to have things in my life that keep me young, my wife, my kids and grand kids and of coarse my horses, especially MONK.  

MONK is back in full tilt training which is hard for me, but very rewarding....  We did the farmland ride again a couple days ago and it was cold and windy, the water foul flying up out of the ditches made for a white knuckle ride, and my knees started aching pretty bad, but I rode well, which always makes me smile, I seem to have a better seat then I did a few years ago.  

I actually did a whole 50 mile ride a couple of weeks ago at Desert Gold.  I rode my horse Psuntana, I call him my Mini MONK.  He cantered the whole first 30 miles and most of the second half.  This is my first 50 in maybe 3 years or so.

Farm Land again


Have a feeling that I will be doing this stretch for quite some time.  Cantering for hours at a time uses different parts of your body so will try some "Monkey Butt" next time.  I have just been riding along side the road, which works well, very good footing, plus I have his Easy Care Gloves on, so the few feet that we are on asphalt I don't have to worry.  MONK enjoys these jaunts very much.  I was reading about a comment someone made about "how do you know he likes it" when someone said that the horses in Dubai liked racing the cars...  I guess you would have to of been there and done that, but a horse like MONK would enjoy that very much.  I usually will do the first couple mile warm up at about 12mph. After he was warmed up a little we end up going a little faster, I really do not pay attention too much to the speed, I just want him to be very comfortable at what ever speed he is going.  I did start to chuckle, actually laugh out loud when I looked at the Garmin as we were doing 14 mph and his heart rate was 114.  I kept an eye on the Garmin for another 10 minutes or so to make sure everything was working properly and it appeared to be.  Towards the end of our ride, and going a little faster I did see a HR of 138.44:14.44:141.0014.114.215.01141252254:14.04:141.0014.214.215.91181272564:06.84:071.0014.614.615.71261352574:25.74:261.0013.513.515.612413723MONK, post ride.Rice fields on either side of the roadWhen I got back home and downloaded the ride information I went back to May of 2010 when Lindsay and I were training for the WEG selection in Brothers Oregon and looked at some long and fast cantering that we did.  His HR for those rides was 140 to 160 range, and we did not check recoveries.  We actually only did a few of these long and fast works and MONK was without a doubt one of the best at the Oregon Selection.  He cantered for 80 miles in about 6.30 hours.  The speed that was asked for on the different loops were 12, 13 and 14 mph.  MONK completed that task with ease.Be interesting, or more interesting to make some comparisons down the road as I gradually increase the speed.  I will probably not increase the distance much, but you never know.  MONK's recoveries on these jaunts are pretty much you would expect from a horse in his condition, well under 5 minutes, and that is with tack on and NO cooling, watch out KUTT.  The main difference that comes to mind right off the bat is the difference in our weight.  Lindsay is at about 150 pounds with the FEI saddle, I weigh in at 210 with his Freeform training saddle.  But, I will have time to get some stats from Lindsay when she comes to train on him, so I will try and have her go the same speed as some of the works I have done with him and draw some conclusion as to what difference the weight makes..  But, he will be more fit by then, not that the numbers are going to change anything, but just nice to know information.Nice grass[...]

Cantering the Farm Land


Decided it was time to do some EASY over 10 mile canters.  Have been looking for sometime for some farm land with real good footing to start cantering MONK.  I took the motorcycle out last week when we had some real nice weather looking for a good spot that was reasonably close.  Well I thought I had found a place, but you never know until you actually get to ride it.  So we saddled up and put him in the trailer.

As you can tell we are out in the middle of the farm lands, with rice fields on both sides of the rode.  We just rode along side the road for the most part, did some loops around inside the fields. 

MONK was intently looking at something, never really did figure out what, probably all the water foul in the all the rice fields.  He was a good boy today, he just picked up the canter right away, and kept it at a nice and easy pace.  He seemed very happy and he kept going a little faster but did not fuss when I asked to go a little slower.  We will pick the pace up a little later after he has been back to work for a little while.

This is post ride, he looked like he had done nothing but just enough for me and for where he is at right now.  He probably could of gone a lot faster, but we are going to ease into the speed, no hurry.  This was a nice place to ride, good nice soft footing, no cars, and easily do over 20 miles without tons of duplication.  Good place to safely go  fast when we get to that phase.



Repeats and Hills


Nice easy 6 miles, repeats and hills.  First part of this video will make you dizzy, you can fast forward using the controls...  You can stop the video and change the angle your looking at or just grab the screen and go exploring.   height="350px" scrolling="no" src="" width="100%"><p>&amp;amp;amp;lt;p&amp;amp;amp;gt;&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;a href=""&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;iMapMyRUN: Dec 3, 2011 1:34 PM&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;/a&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt; and more runs in Penn Valley, CA on MapMyRUN. &amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;a href=""&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;Find run&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;/a&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt; &amp;amp;amp;lt;/p&amp;amp;amp;gt;</p>

MONK under saddle


How soon we forget..  MONK is so smooth to ride, his gates are perfect.  His 18 mph trot is super nice, he is such a powerful horse.  Today I rode him for the first time in a couple of months.  I rode him first in the pasture next door, it is about 500 yards with a nice uphill, good footing, but that was kind of a mistake.  Years ago this is where we would go and canter for 5 miles at a time, and where I am currently riding two other horses.  We just walked at first, a couple of times up and down, then a nice easy trot, after about 2 times of that MONK really wanted to go MONK speed.  I forget what an ASS he can be when he wants to go fast, he just runs away with you and you better be strong enough to stop him.  He will get better after he has been ridden for awhile.  So after the little uphills I decided that I would take him down to the lake, which is about 1 mile, with almost 1000 feet of elevation gain.  We went almost to the lake but we encounter a MONK eating broken tree branch laying in the road.  I thought we had long passed this silly stage, but he saw it and spun as quick as a cutting horse, luckily I stayed in the saddle, because if I fell off he would not hang around to give me a ride home. He just trotted the hill, but very quickly and was pretty pissed I would not let him run....

I do miss riding him, he is so easy to be around.  But sure I will be tired of it soon, I am currently riding two other horses almost daily.  It is lots of work to condition MONK.  These next few weeks I will be able to get him slowly up to speed and will then be looking for special trails and locations to bring him back to the top of his game.  I really think that MONK can be in better condition then his last race season but it will take lots of time and energy.  Most of MONK's conditioning will be off the ranch, which will probably mean that one whole day GONE.

Back to work... World 2012?


MONK has had 60 days off, R & R, no doing nothing, Nada,  well not exactly, I did take him for a few walks....  One was over on the south side of the mountain where there are lots of hills and sunshine and quite a view of Lake Englebright, see picture.  This is a great place for hill training during the winter, you get lots of sunshine when it's available and some nice local views.  You can't do any fast work, but you can do some real steep hills, you can canter a few, but most are so steep you NEED to just walk.

Should be posting more in the next few months as I bring MONK back into the best shape he has ever been in.

Rumor has it that a test event will be held somewhere in Texas at the end of March where ALL horse and rider teams will compete for a spot on the USA team for World Endurance Challenge in England.

I have to say that March is pretty early in the year for some folks who live in snow country.  I am lucky that I can train year round and do much of it right from the ranch.

I have a big decision to make about which way we are headed for 2012, but regardless MONK will be in the best shape EVER..  This horse will only be 10 in 2012 and we will be training for his best performances yet.

The saga continues....

Tevis 2011 - Winner and Haggin Cup recipient Jeremy Reynolds.


This first video is of Jeremy Reynolds coming up Bath road just about to go into the Foresthill Vet Check, he is leading the 100 mile Tevis Cup race on his way to a first place finish and winner of the coveted Haggin Cup.   I was a little late turning on the camera but the purpose of the video is to show how he quickly cools out his horse to reach the required heart rate before he goes to the Vet.  What you don't see is that just after they turn the corner into the crewing area they grab a hose and continue to cool the horse for probably another 90 seconds or so before they go into the pulse box.  The pulse box is just a small area roped off where they take the horses pulse.  The horse must reach a certain pulse before they are allowed to go to the vet, it is usually 64 or 60, depending on the race, I actually do not know what the required pulse was. So, to recap, saddle is removed quickly, probably within 3 seconds, yes, about 3 to 5 seconds, then the horse is cooled using massive amounts of water with the horse always having forward motion.  Usually the in timer is before you are allowed to crew, but in this case it is allowed to crew prior to the in timer.  As the horse and crew approach the in timer they call out the riders number and it is documented with the in time..  The actual in time does not start until the horse has reach the required HR inside the pulse box.  If they take the horse into the pulse box and the required pulse is too high the horse must exit the box and then go to the back of the line and wait for their turn again.  When you race at this level, every minute and second counts, that is where a good crew is essential. allowFullScreen='true' webkitallowfullscreen='true' mozallowfullscreen='true' width='320' height='266' src='' class='b-hbp-video b-uploaded' FRAMEBORDER='0' />This video is of Jeremy leaving the Foresthill Vet check with about 37 more miles to go.  Jeremy runs the EasyCare Glue on boots so they help suck up all the concussion from going fast on hard ground and help lots on asphalt. allowFullScreen='true' webkitallowfullscreen='true' mozallowfullscreen='true' width='320' height='266' src='' class='b-hbp-video b-uploaded' FRAMEBORDER='0' />This is a video of Jeremy coming off the Tevis trail and crossing Hwy 49, about 6 miles to the finish.  If you notice Jeremy jumps off his horse and runs up the hill.  Not sure how much he ran during this race but it could of been considerable.  He did have some fast horses that were close so sometimes you have to change your game plan a little.  What I found interesting is the during the ride Jeremy was closely followed by Rachel Shackleford on her amazing horse Cody, who is 18 year old.  Jeremy and Rachel rode quite a few miles together and Jeremy thought she was quite talented.  Jeremy shared some of the tricks of the trade with Rachel which will help her in the future.  I chatted with Rachel during BC showing about her ride with Jeremy and I know she was impressed with Jeremy. allowFullScreen='true' webkitallowfullscreen='true' mozallowfullscreen='true' width='320' height='266' src='' class='b-hbp-video b-uploaded' FRAMEBORDER='0' />This video is of Rachel and Cody about 20 minutes be[...]



This article by Troy Smith was in this months Endurance News....Fastest American 100-mile time setFastest known 100s in AERC historyYear Horse Rider Ride Time2011 Monk Lindsay Graham Patriot’s Day at Lake Almanor 6:532011 A Kutt Above Jeremy Reynolds Patriot’s Day at Lake Almanor 6:542010 Theatric Kathy Brunjes Fun In The Sun Pioneer - FEI 7:442010 Syrocco Reveille Meg Sleeper Fun In The Sun Pioneer - FEI 7:442010 Spectacular Gold Valerie Kanavy AERC National Championship 7:552004 Rokket Karen Kroon Arabian Nights FEI 7:57by Troy Smith, AERCUnlike human marathons, endurance rides generally don’t recognize record times, since each ride has so many variables—terrain, weather, altitude, etc. A query from the first-place finisher in the Patriot’s Day at Lake Almanor 100, held July 30 in Northern California, sent the office on a search of the unofficial record book.As best as we can tell, Monk—ridden by Lindsay Graham, DVM—ran the fastest-ever 100 in North America, with a time of 6:53. (Jeremy Reynolds and A Kutt Above crossed the finish line just a minute later.)The previous fastest time in AERC’s searchable history was a 7:44 tie finish by Theatric, ridden by Kathy Brunjes, and Syrocco Reveille, with Meg Sleeper, DVM, aboard at the March 2010 Fun in the Sun 100 in Florida.A 7:55 finish was clocked by Spectacular Gold and Valerie Kanavy at the 2010 AERC National Championship 100 in South Carolina. In 2004, Rokket and Karen Kroon finished the 100-mile Arabian Nights FEI in 7:57.Lindsay and Monk, the 100-mile National Championship winners in 2009, were only trying to make FEI “elite” status at the ride: a finish in under nine hours. But right from the start, Monk, A Kutt Above and No Repeat, ridden by former World Champion Becky Hart, were vying for the win.Lindsay always pays strict attention to Monk’s pace. “Monk’s welfare is always of the upmost importance to me,” said Lindsay, who has been riding Monk for owner Chris Martin for nearly three years. “As an endurance rider for seven years now, as well as being a veterinarian, I know where my boundaries are and know how to ride the line when needed.“I am always riding a guarded pace, never a ‘Monk’ pace,” explained Lindsay. “At the Patriot’s Day 100, we went a Monk pace. We even put it into a whole new gear for the last loop which I was very hesitant to do but Monk kept telling me to just let him do his thing. The last loop, flying at 18.5 mph, I felt a bit out of my comfort zone, but at the same time I had a smile on my face. If Monk could, he would be smiling too.”Lindsay uses a Garmin heart rate monitor while competing. At his record-setting ride, Monk ran between 120 and 130 bpm at a 14 mph pace after his first “amped-up” loop. On their final loop, riding at 18.5 mph, Lindsay was pleased to see Monk running at around 140 bpm.At the rest stops, Monk typically recovered within five minutes, although the first check didn’t go ideally. “I made the mistake of having water poured on his neck and part of his back first thing in the morning,” admitted Lindsay. “As soon as he got cold, he began shivering, his heart rate spiked, and we had to return to the pulse box, losing six minutes at that hold. I told my crew to let me know what the temp was really like as I came into the holds, as Monk and I come in hot and I get a little jaded sometimes on how cold it really is.”Strategy at the holds was instrumental in their win. Lindsay said, “For a majority of the [...]



North American Team ChallengeMONK pulled after 100 miles.  Hind site being 2020 consensus was that he seemed a little tight in the rear end which may of changed the way he moved a little causing his pull for lameness.  He was totally sound while under saddle, and a Equine Vet who loves him was in the saddle, he was sound the next day after being checked by 3 Vets, and when we got home he was sound...   Hate not knowing exactly what was wrong, it can come back to haunt you.NAETC photo link in the left hand column. He looks fast!  Thanks for the picture Nancy...Out of all the pictures that we took I like the one above the most, it was taken by my wife Nancy.  She just does not click, she actually has an idea of what she might get when she click the shutter...I want to thank my fellow competitor Jeremy Reynolds who while following Lindsay and MONK on one of the loops jumped off his horse to retrieve Lindsay's stirrup which had fallen off.  Now this was just not your ordinary ride, there were about 5 top horses, hours ahead of the rest of the field, and ALL vying for a medal at this competition. Seems like each of the horses had let the race at some point in time, they were all within minutes of each other.  This is Heathers blog, Jeremy's wife, and am sure she will write something about this event when she has time. race info here. nice Story by Merri... local newspaper stories about Lindsay and MONK....We had a couple new crew member on this trip, Ken Cook, and Lindsay's sister Allison.  Ken forgot more about horses and racing then I ever knew and was a valuable asset.  Out standby crew of Eric, Steve, Susie, Nancy and I rounded out the crew....  Of coarse we were hoping for a repeat of the Patriot ride and we things were going according to game plan.   Nice body weight, prefer a little meat on my horses ribs. Steve holding the Monkster... First Vet check, 15 miles into the ride.Amazing day with another blazing fast ride.[...]



MONK is getting ready for the North American Endurance Championship.  This is where horses from all over the United States and Canada will come to compete in the 100 mile event in Greenville CA.  This coarse is the same one where MONK won the AERC Championship ride in 2009 so we have a home town advantage.  MONK is listed on the USEF training list as number ONE and will ride for Pac North.  Looks like we will have at least two teams of four.MONK has had several training rides since his win and BC at the Patriot 100 ride.  This coarse at Greenville does have some hills which we prefer.  MONK is a great hill horse but does well on most courses, but the tougher the better is our preference. The Map My Run is a program that is on my iphone4 and I use it instead of the Garmin when I am not recording Heart Rates.  What you are looking at is a route that I use when I pony MONK and am looking  for some speed.  There is about 2000 feet of elevation gain so it is definitely not flat my any means.  But I have lots of slight uphills, slight downhills where we can get the speed up a little.This is a fun program, you can stop it and change how you look at the whole thing, you can even go off exploring by using the two controls top right. height="350px" scrolling="no" src="" width="100%"><p>&amp;amp;amp;lt;p&amp;amp;amp;gt;&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;&amp;amp;lt;span class="goog-spellcheck-word" style="background-image: initial; background-attachment: initial; background-origin: initial; background-clip: initial; background-color: yellow; background-position: initial initial; background-repeat: initial initial; "&amp;amp;gt;lt&amp;amp;lt;/span&amp;amp;gt;;p&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;&amp;amp;lt;span class="goog-spellcheck-word" style="background-image: initial; background-attachment: initial; background-origin: initial; background-clip: initial; background-color: yellow; background-position: initial initial; background-repeat: initial initial; "&amp;amp;gt;lt&amp;amp;lt;/span&amp;amp;gt;;a &amp;amp;lt;span class="goog-spellcheck-word" style="background-image: initial; background-attachment: initial; background-origin: initial; background-clip: initial; background-color: yellow; background-position: initial initial; background-repeat: initial initial; "&amp;amp;gt;href&amp;amp;lt;/span&amp;amp;gt;="http://www.&amp;amp;lt;span class="goog-spellcheck-word" style="background-image: initial; background-attachment: initial; background-origin: initial; background-clip: initial; background-color: yellow; background-position: initial initial; background-repeat: initial initial; "&amp;amp;gt;mapmyrun&amp;amp;lt;/span&amp;amp;gt;.com/routes/view/48502134"&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;&amp;amp;lt;span class="goog-spellcheck-word" style="background-image: initial; background-attachment: initial; background-origin: initial; background-clip: initial; background-color: yellow; background-position: initial initial; background-repeat: initial initial; "&amp;amp;gt;iMapMyRUN&amp;amp;lt;/span&amp;amp;gt;: Aug 30, 2011 6:23 PM&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;&amp;amp;lt;span class="goog-spellcheck-word" style="background-image: init[...]

Monk Bath


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Patriot FEI 100 Helmet Cam Videos



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Cooling out pre vet check

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Maybe 3rd loop,  Jeremy Reynolds 1st, Becky Hart 2nd, MONK and Lindsay 3rd.

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Finish line helmet cam....  

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Best Condition showing.

Patriot FEI 100 - MONK wins plus Best Condition


Monk and I arrived at the Patriot ride on Thursday afternoon and set up camp with enough room for our crew rigs.  Our crew consisted of myself, Susie and Steve, Bob Spoor and Eric.  Lindsay and Crew arrived about 3pm on Friday.  I did ride MONK on Friday morning at about 8am, he was quite as usual, seemed very relaxed on controllable.  We went out on loop two for about 4 miles and then turned around and came back.  The trail was somewhat rocky but was nice enough to cantor.  Since Lindsay would be cantoring most of this ride, that is what we did.  MONK and I have been working on some pretty tough training rides, all envolving cantoring in preparation for this ride.  Our goal for this FEI ride was to obtain the new "Elite" horse status.  The rules say that if a horse does a sub 9 hour 100, then they are considered a "Elite" horse.  So, with the ride starting at 5:30 am, I calculated that we needed to finish by just before 7PM to make the sub 9.....MONK, I think he is checking out the PorscheView from the Living Room.Add captionLindsay braided MONK and we went to vet him through.  All A's of coarse so we returned to the trailer where we saddled up for a short test run and tack check.  All was good, Lindsay was very happy with his attitude, he is a happy horse, not very friendly but happy, he loves what he does and you can tell, especially when you see him on the trail.  He pretty much does not make a real good presentation to the vet, but that is just him, he just chills.After Vet in, 105F  (F is for FEI)MONK getting the girly stuff done.This is going to be my next Tow vehicle.. it is a Porsche Cayenne.Ride meeting was at 6:30PM, lots of rider.  I think there were 30 in the 100, 10 of those were FEI.  Lots of the FEI horses are trying to get back on the training list so they can ride the North American Endurance Team Challenge on Sept 24 th of this year which will be held in the same general area but different location.  Actually it will be held on the same trail where MONK won the 2009 AERC championship ride. Not being the rider I pretty much space during the ride meeting and just hear what I want to hear.  Criteria was 64 all day, tack off on the 50 minute holds and can stay on for the 30 minute holds.We had decided that we would pull tack on all holds, as cooling is critical.  MONK does well in the heat and can get chilled easily.Lindsay was up at 4:30 AM Saturday morning, taking MONK for a walk and let him graze a little.  She is always in the saddle warming him up 30 minutes before the ride.  We did have a pre ride conference to make sure we were on the same page, no racing non FEI riders, try and get MONK by himself so he can relax and not pull her arms off...We did walk the 1/3 mile out to the start line and watch them all take off in a cloud of dust, too dark for photo's, could not even tell where Lindsay was, but only 30 or so riders.  Loop 1 was 25 miles, first rider in was a FEI rider, Deanna by a minute or so, the rest showed up quickly.  MONK was probably in the top 5 or so, we pulled saddle and walked him to the water trough, we had talked about probably NOT using water on him on the first check knowing he chills, but for some reason I think we got a little frantic when it looked like we getting seriously behind, so we started using some water on him.  This mistake cost us 6 minutes as he chilled and then was not at criteria whe[...]

Video of MONK's race boots.



Training Ride


MONK has done this training ride a couple of times.  Each time he gets just a little faster and recovers a little quicker. Actually his last run on this coarse was 10 days ago, he reduced his overall time by 10 minutes, and a 1 mph average over last time and his recovery was 5 minutes quicker.  The finish to this ride is on the uphill, so MONK's heart rate upon reaching the trailer is around 160.  I do a separate file for the recovery logs.  Please notice the elevation gain, this is not a flat ride.  With the change of the Tevis cup ride we had to switch our training from hills to more flat and fast coarse.  We are training for the Patriot ride at the end of September which is a FEI 100.  This ride will be pretty flat and fast.This training ride is done on a mountain road that gets very little traffic, has recently been graded and the hills are pretty short, meaning that we can run most of them.  The downhill portion to the turn around point is rolling, with short uphills, and you can canter about 70% of it.  After the turn around, you can canter probably 90% and fast trot the steeper downhills.MONK will have one more hard ride, probably this same coarse, along with some smaller trail rides.OverallTime:01:33:38Distance:20.07 miElevation Gain:2,446 ftCalories:755 CTimingTime:01:33:38Moving Time:01:31:00Elapsed Time:01:39:44Avg Speed:12.9 mphAvg Moving Speed:13.2 mphMax Speed:18.9 mphSpeedPaceElevationElevation Gain:2,446 ftElevation Loss:2,440 ftMin Elevation:3,347 ftMax Elevation:5,306 ftHeart RateAvg HR:145 bpmMax HR:209 bpmZones% of MaxbpmLaps 21View SplitsSplitTimeDistanceAvg SpeedSummary01:33:3820.0712.9100:05:441.0010.4200:05:471.0010.4300:04:511.0012.3400:05:081.0011.7500:04:231.0013.7600:04:261.0013.5700:04:231.0013.7800:04:301.0013.3900:04:111.0014.31000:04:191.0013.91100:04:161.0014.11200:04:091.0014.51300:04:181.0013.91400:04:251.0013.61500:04:101.0014.41600:04:101.0014.41700:05:101.0011.61800:04:491.0012.51900:04:501.0012.42000:05:091.0011.62100:00:210.0712.6[...]

NASTR 75 - MONK "First and BC"


NASTR 75Well any race starts at home in your horse preparation.  We have been conditioning hard, with lots of rest and even more nutritional support.  We use the EasyCare Glue on boots applied with just Goober Hoof Pack..., these are applied most of the time at least a week in advance of the ride.  MONK gets weighed everyday with a digital scale to make sure he is maintaining he weight. Everybody wants a horse like MONK.  If you think campaigning a top horse is fun, take another think. Everybody is watching, everybody is waiting for you to fall on your face, and everybody has an opinion.  The vets give you very special attention, and rightfully so, and for the most part do a wonderful job.  We listen to them intently and try and adjust. We all try to do the best that we can for our equine athletes and we do talk about those who excel, and especially those who over ride their horses.  We are trying hard to do the very best for MONK, and those who have seen him going down the trail with that big SMILE on his face will know that he likes what he does. Pre ride weight......Pre Vet check-in....Vet Abuse, caught on camera!Just another day at the office for MONK, all business.  MONK had Shannon Constanti on board for this training ride, as Dr. Lindsay Graham DVM had to attened her little sisters wedding.  We always have a game plan which we try and follow but also to be flexible and change things on the fly as they come up.  Shannon has only a 25 mile training ride on MONK so her experience on him is limited.  Bob Spoor on Logistric were also riding the 75, Bob and Dr. Lindsay had ridden the Cache Creek ride together and the horses seemed to go good together, so after chatting to Bob we decided that we would at least try and start out together.  Well that did not happen, Shannon could not find Bob at the start and after talking to Bob he said that for the first 10 miles or so he was having a control problem with Logistric.  Not sure what I expected but was totally shocked when Shannon and MONK showed up on the horizon leading the pack into the first 25 mile Vet check, she was followed closely by another lady who I did not know.Chris and Jay, doing all the work!! Jay is Shannon's Dad.We are missing MIKE, the picture taker, Shannon's better half, thanks for all the help and support. MONK pulsed quickly to criteria of 60 and we moved him to our crew spot for a snack.  We let him eat for a few minutes and then grabbed some hay and grain and walked and fed him while on the way to the Vet. Hold was for 40 minutes with tack on as it was on very warm.  MONK ate like he has never ate before at an endurance ride.  We had 3 different kind of hay, plus carrots and 3 different grains and a mash, which he did not touch..One of many VET checks, sponging lightly, not too warm out.Shannon mounted and headed for the out timer for the next 25 miles.  As we got to the timer the lady that was running 2nd was told my the timer that she could go.  She took off down the trail.  Now I know that we pulsed down at least 2 to 5 minutes ahead of her, we were in the pulse box while she was still at the water, and there was only ONE pulse box...  Kim, the ride manager was close by so I told her what had happened.  As luck would have it the lady forgot her helmet and came back down the trail where [...]