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AUBURN — When the dust had settled Aug. 5 from the 57th Annual 100-mile Great Western States Trail Ride — better known as the venerable Tevis Cup — riders Garrett Ford and his wife, Lisa, politely took first and second, respectively, and Rusty Toth claimed the Haggin Cup with the best-conditioned horse, Farrabba while finishing fourth.

The trio were part of a quartet of competitors from Durango, Colo., that also included third-place finisher Kevin Myers in the top four placings.

The ride along the Great Western Trail, threading the Sierra from Robie Park near Lake Tahoe to Auburn, is regarded as one of the world’s most challenging. Of the 206 competitors who started Aug. 4, only 98 finished within a 24-hour timeline.

“What a horse,” said Garrett Ford of his mount, The Fury, a grey Arabian gelding. “I’ve had some incredible equine partners in my life, but our bond is a special one. If I had to pick a horse to ride a 100 miles for my life over the Tevis trail, I would saddle The Fury every time.” Ford, the President and CEO of Easycare, Inc., siezed the day for his company’s products and the natural hoofcare movement in general, as the the Coloradans and two others in the top 10 were barefoot and booted with Easy Boots.

At the finish line, spousal politeness took part as Ford and his wife of 17 years, Lisa, stopped just a stride shy from crossing. After a minute of “You go first”, “No, you go first” discourse, the winner stepped forward. Runner-up Lisa, riding GE Cyclone, was ensued and was given a time one second later, as ties are not allowed.

Ten minutes later, the rest of the “Easy streak” finished the race — Myers, the Director of Marketing for Easy Care, on Auli Farwa (FV Aul Fancy Free x Winchester Silkie) and Toth on Farrabba.

The next day, Toth and Farraba were given the Haggin Cup, a prestigious award as the horse among the Top 10 finishers judged to be in the best condition.

Past Tevis winners and current U.S. World Championship team members who were set to compete in the 2012 Olympic Games on non-Tevis ride mounts, Jeremy and Heather Reynolds, were unable to complete. Within four miles of the start, Jeremy’s ride ended when his horse plunged off the trail 25-30 feet down a steep grade. Reynolds was reportedly not seriously injured, and his mare Cleopatrah (*Calin De Louve x SRF Calera) required sutures from the fall. His wife, Heather, was among the leaders on Stirgess (*Virgule Al Maury x Star Path) to about 85 miles, when a sudden lameness took them from the competition.

MORE ONLINE: http://www.teviscup.org/

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