What Is A Ride & Tie Race?

horse rope There are many equestrian events out there, and from time to time we like to take a closer look and perhaps share an event you didn’t even know existed. In this week’s blog, we look at the exciting world of the ride & tie race.

It all starts with your jeans

In a ride & tie race, a team of two human beings and one horse complete a trail course that can vary from 20 to 100 miles. One human takes off running, while the other human rides the horse ahead to a predetermined point. The rider then ties the horse to a tree and begins running. The original runner reaches the horse and then rides ahead to another point, and the cycle continues back and forth. The race is finished when all three team members cross the finish line, but they do not have to cross at the same time.

Ride & tie racing got its start in 1971 when it was invented by Levi Strauss brand jeans. The company wanted a sporting event that showcased the company’s rough and tumble image.

Today’s ride & tie is not only a great display of horsemanship, but of human speed and teamwork between both people and people and animals. On the longer courses, it can be a test of grueling endurance, as well. Horses competing in ride & tie need to be both fast and able to rest tied to a tree between runs. To keep the competing horses safe during the event, there is a vet check at the start, at least once during the race, and one after.

There is an annual ride & tie world championship, and the 2013 contest is just around the corner, this August 24th at Ft. Bragg in California. Riders from around the world will gather to prove their teamwork in various skill classes.

For more information on this great equestrian event, visit the official ride & tie website.

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