The competitors and staff arrive at the grounds (toongabbie adult riders club grounds) on the Friday Saturday morning prior to the event. The competitor is required to enter the ride and the horse undergoes a pre-event vet check to ensure that the horse is fit to start.
The ride is divided into “legs” – in this case a 40km (marked with red arrows) , also a 20km loop (marked with blue arrows) and a 10 km loop (marked with green arrows). At the completion of each loop the horse is required to present to the vets for review within 30min of completion to ensure the horse is fit to continue in the event. (many parameters are checked including lameness, heart rate , hydration status etc). There is a hold time between legs of 60 mins , this includes the 30min preparation time for vetting.
The ride commences at 7am, all riders are marshalled and their competitor number taken so that the chief steward is aware of how many riders (and who they are) at a given time are on track. At the beginning of the ride the riders leave together but quickly spread over the course as riders will ride at different paces.
Along the course there are dedicated checkpoints , as the rider passes through these checkpoints they are required to announce their competitor number which is recorded by the checkpoint personnel. This is to ensure that all riders stay on course and are accounted for during the event. At all times there is a rescue float available if a rider chooses to withdraw and return to base.
On completion of each leg , time keepers record arrival time back at base and the time the riders returns to the course on the second leg.
The running of the event is managed by the chief steward who is onsite over the weekend. Veterinary staff are on base over the weekend and are available to treat any horses if required.
Risks are assessed and managed as per the attached risk management document. The 40km, 20km and 10km traverses stock routes, laneways and quiet country roads in the farmland between Toongabbie & Glengarry & Cowwar. VicRoads and Latrobe Shire have been consulted and provided with this document also.
This event has occurred annually for the past 10 years without incident. It attracts competitors from all over Victoria to Gippsland and promotes tourism for the future.
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