It was a perfect marathon day weather-wise. Sunny, 60s and kind of windy. The ground dried nicely so the footing was good for the horses and ponies. There weren’t as many spectators as I thought there might be. This has been called a ‘test event’ but it is far from what we expect it will be like in 2010. There were no bleachers for spectators who didn’t bring chairs, no trash containers, no food except at the stable area, and maybe at the dressage arena area, and no transportation, so it was a long walk for those who didn’t have golf carts (which won’t be allowed at all next year.)
I believe the results can be seen at www.drivingnews.us There were just a couple of mishaps – Bill Peacock and Robin Foster both turned over in hazards, but I don’t believe there were any injuries. There were several eliminations, particularly among the FEI horse fours. Eugen Hug (Canada) went through A backward in obstacle 7. Bill Long and Casey Zubek missed gates in obstacles. Wendy Ying retired on section A.
Boyd Excell won the marathon driving Keady Cadwell’s team. Chester Weber was close behind. It was great to see Mike McLennan come in third! He beat Tucker Johnson by a point, so he is standing 5th overall.
One other thing I want to mention is that the volunteers are all here on their own nickel. Some have been here since Monday. While it is fun to be involved with an event such as the WEG and the lead up to it, it is also long, tiring days, and sometimes people forget to express their appreciation.
Cones starts tomorrow at 8:30. I believe that there will be retirement ceremonies for Courage to Lead, the pony owned by Bev Lesher that Suzy Stafford is driving here (and winning so far!) and for Natasha Grigg’s pair driven by Larry Poulin. Larry is also standing in first place.