The longest endurance ride in Australia, the 400km Shahzada was held at St Albans in the MacDonald Valley at the end of August.
This was the 37th Shahzada marathon to be held, and includes a mini-marathon of 120kms which gives riders and horses the chance to get the taste for marathon riding.
Shahzada is a very challenging event, not only due to the distance travelled (80km a day for five consecutive days) but also because of the exceptionally steep and rocky conditions on some parts of the course.
This year there was a relatively small 44 entries, which included local riders who made their journey to try their luck.
Sue Warren, riding Entourage Era, was successful in 47 hours and 5 minutes, and Allix Jones riding Ralvon Milarna, achieved her eleventh Shahzada in 52 hours and 52 minutes.
John Howe, riding Ashbend Perazzi, was unlucky to vet out lame on the last day, a disappointment after achieving eight consecutive successful completions from eight attempts.
Regardless however, all the riders from Mudgee and Windeyer had a great time at the event, and Pat Dickinson – endurance rider organiser – said that simply “to finish is to win”.
The fastest time in the event, at the end of the week, was 38 hours.
Mette Sutton riding Tuldar Tully was successful in the mini-marathon, alongside Brad Jones on Shellal Jive.