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Shoeing For The Long Run

Shoeing for endurance rides requires knowledge of the terrain being covered as well as the horse


NEAR THE FINISH LINE. Jayel Super ridden by Stagg Newman and Charlie ridden by Sue Greenall are shown on the way to a 1st and 2nd place finish in the Old Dominion 100-mile endurance ride in 2004. Super’s win made him the first horse to win the Old Dominion three times. He was shod by Jeff Pauley.

Horses in endurance races will be ridden from 50 to 100 miles. During those miles, the horses will be required to walk, trot, canter and gallop through a variety of trail conditions and surfaces.

“That means you better check your ego at the gate,” Jeff Pauley, a farrier from Burnsville, N.C., told an audience during a presentation at the International Hoof-Care Summit in Cincinnati, Ohio. “You have to keep an open mind and be willing to change the horse for what he needs for that race.”

Pauley, who served as a farrier for the World Endurance Games held in Germany during August, first began working with endurance horses about 7 years ago. He enjoys the challenge this type of shoeing requires.

“For me, the most complicated equine athlete to shoe is the endurance horse,” he says. “There are no quick fixes and the horse must stay sound for as much as 100 miles over inconsistent and tough terrain.”

In addition to there being no quick fixes, Pauley says there’s no one right way to shoe endurance horses. He says that his choice of materials and style of shoeing has to take into account…

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Pat Tearney

Pat Tearney is a long-term newspaper and magazine veteran writer and editor. Before retiring, he served for a number of years on the American Farriers Journal staff and continues to share his writing talents with our readers.

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