37-Year-Old Competitive Trail Horse Update: Summer Vacation

Like school kids everywhere, Elmer Bandit, the 37-year-old Half Arabian gelding who is closing in on a world record for lifetime competitive trail miles, is enjoying a summer vacation.

Elmer's lifetime miles stand at 20,360, which is 350 short of the world record held by Saddlebred Wing Tempo.

"He seems to be doing fine," reported owner Mary Anna Wood from Elmer's stable in Independence, Mo.

Why the vacation? High summer temperatures coupled with high humidity make July a "vacation" month in Region 6, the North American Trail Ride ( NATRC) division where Elmer competes.

Elmer Bandit at Perry Lake

Elmer Bandit and Mary Anna Wood compete April 26, 2008.

Wood has plans for at least six rides with Elmer this year, starting back with the Spotted Rump Ride near St. Louis on Aug. 16 and 17.

While Wood is staying in shape by competing with younger horses, Elmer still takes dressage lessons every two weeks.

"He'd be glad to go to a ride," Wood reports. "He's probably bored."

And if Elmer completes all six of the 60-mile events on his schedule for this season? You do the math.

Read more about Elmer.

About the Author

Marsha Hayes

Marsha Hayes has been covering endurance, trail, and other equine topics since 2005. She believes every horse has a story.

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