August 13, 2012
The “Easy Team” Takes Top Four Places in the Western States 100-Mile Trail Ride
by Genie Stewart-Spears
Of the 206 competitors that left the starting line on August 4, 2012, in the 57th Annual 100-Mile Western States Trail Ride (aka Tevis Cup), only 98 would cross the finish line within the 24-hour timeline and receive their well-deserved belt buckle. For most, that was the only quest — to earn the prestigious belt buckle. But for a few, the goal was to win or top ten the event that traverses the rugged and sometimes dangerous and unforgiving Sierra Nevada mountains and canyons.
Past Tevis winners and current U.S. World Championship team members going to Great Britain this month (on different horses), Jeremy and Heather Reynolds were strong contenders but were unable to complete. Jeremy was out within 4 miles of the start when his horse went off the trail and plunged 25-30 feet down a cliff. Reynolds was battered but okay, and his mare Cleopatrah (*Calin De Louve x SRF Calera) required sutures from the fall. His wife Heather was going strong on Stirgess (*Virgule Al Maury x Star Path) with the leaders until 85 miles, when a sudden lameness took her from the competition. Although disappointed, Heather said, “We got rid of any bad luck so London should really be awesome!”
At the end, deciding who would be first to finish was a tough call when Garrett Ford, EasyCare, Inc. President and CEO, and his petite wife of 17 years, Lisa, stopped just a foot from the finish line. “You go first.” “No, you go first.” “No, you go first!” Finally, after a minute or so, The Fury (unregistered Arabian) stepped forward, securing the overall win for Garrett. Then GE Cyclone (Darix x Margaretta) with Lisa Ford aboard stepped across the finish line a second later for a shared course time of 14 hours and 55 minutes. (Ties are not permitted.)
Ten minutes later the other half of the Easy Team, as the four competitors were dubbed, Kevin Myers, EasyCare Inc., Director of Marketing, on Auli Farwa (FV Aul Fancy Free x Winchester Silkie) and Rusty Toth on Farrabba (Rabba Baron x FV Farrubi) completed third and fourth respectively.
The following day, Farrabba, better known as Stoner for his mellow attitude, was awarded the coveted Haggin Cup for the horse in the top ten judged as the overall best condition.
All four horses, as well as two others in the top ten, were barefoot and booted with Easy Boots, a testament to changing times.
Click here for the final standings of the 2012 Tevis Cup: http://www.teviscup.org/tevis-results/2012-tevis-webcast/2012-webcast-live-results