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The next VERA SMC meeting will be held on 20 February 2021. This was originally planned as a face-to-face meeting at Quest Caroline Springs but this has now been modified to a virtual meeting. If anyone wishes to attend this meeting please contact the VERA Secretary, Mezcal Manners.

As we draw close to the first ride of the season at Dergholm the SMC would like to highlight to members that the greater majority of Victorian horses will be under the 13 month rule as a result of the shutdown of the sport last year. Rule 48.2 states:

If a horse of endurance status has not successfully completed one endurance ride in the preceding 13 month period, calculated retrospectively from the day of the ride to be entered, then that horse shall be deemed to have returned to novice horse status and must enter all rides pursuant to Clause 47 until the horse successfully completes one endurance ride.

This means there will be a lot of horses will not be able to finish a leg until the minimum ride time (often around 3 hrs for a 40km leg) has elapsed. This requirement will need some thought from riders not only from a riding strategy perspective but also from a vetting perspective.

If there are 55 horses who must ride at novice pace you would not all want to be arriving back at the ride base exactly 3 hrs after the start of the leg. The congestion in the vet ring will be heavy and you may take a long time to get through the vetting, impacting on the amount of time your horse gets to recover in their yard before going back out on the second leg.

Information from other states indicates that horses were not competition fit as a result of the interruptions to events in those states and higher than normal vet out rates were experienced. Riders may also need to factor this aspect into your ride times.

The SMC wishes you all a happy and successful ride at Dergholm.

The following volunteers have put their hands up to undertake support roles for VERA Members:

The VERA SMC have received and approve a ride application from the GERZ Committee.  They will be running the Emu Cup on the weekend of the 2nd and 3rd October 2021.  Rides will be conducted on Sunday, 3 October with ride distances of 20, 40 and 80km.  The SMC would like to thank the GERZ committee for running two rides in 2021.  Great effort and wonderful support for our sport so please show your thanks by attending this ride.

The VERA Management Committee meeting held its first meeting this week at which the task of allocating portfolios was undertaken.  Portfolios were allocated as follows:

Linda Tanian – President, AERA Management Committee Member, Governance

Paul Nugent – Vice President, Calendar Coordinator/Insurance

The following are the proposed meeting dates for the VERA SMC for 2021:

  • 20 February
  • 20 March
  • 17 April

The VERA AGM was held on Saturday at the Landsborough Recreation Reserve. Despite ordinary weather earlier in the morning the day was beautiful and warm and an outdoor AGM location was perfect.

There wasn't a huge turn up of members but that didn't stop the good, in depth discussions and contributions on the agenda items.