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Central Ontario Sends Seven to 2001 National Tetrathlon Championship

The Central Ontario Region is sending seven Pony Clubbers to the 2001 Canadian Pony Club National Tetrathlon Championships, being held August 6-11 based at Loon Lake Camp in the Malcolm Knapp Research Forest (University of British Columbia). They are Brittany Emery and Kendal Lehari of the Toronto & North York Pony Club, Bonnie Burlton of the Pause Awhile Pony Club, Zachary McCue and Amy Jordan of the Kawartha Pony Club, and Katie Murray and Jordan Thompson of the Durham Pony Club.  All of them qualified at the Central Ontario Regional Tetrathlon in June, as did competitors from Vancouver Island to Prince Edward Island in their own Regions.

Tetrathlon is a very demanding competition with four parts: swimming, shooting (with air pistols), running and riding. Scoring varies with the phase. In swimming, points are given for the time taken to complete a fixed distance (50-200m, depending on level). In shooting, the points are given for the number of shots in the target and their position in the target, similar to darts. Running is scored by time taken to complete a cross-country course. Riding is scored like the cross-country and stadium jumping phases of eventing, with penalty points for refusals, falls, rails down in the stadium portion, and taking longer than the optimum time to complete the course.

At the National level, it is impractical to trailer horses across the country, so competitors located near enough to the competition site loan their horses to those from further away. Owners ride on one day, non-owners ride another.

Three former Tetrathletes are now Canadian Olympians and, showing true Pony Club involvement, have volunteered to assist with this National Championship. They are:

Ian Soellner, formerly of the Victoria / Saanich Pony Club, competed in Barcelona, Spain in the Modern Pentathlon. Ian will head up the cross-country running at Loon Lake on August 9th.

Laurie Shong, a former Langley and Maple Ridge Pony Club member has competed in not one but two events at the Olympics. Laurie represented Canada in Fencing and Modern Pentathlon in Barcelona, Spain and in Fencing in Sydney, Australia. Laurie also was the recipient of the Harry Jerome Award for coming back to compete from a very serious injury. Laurie will head up the swim event.

Maple Ridges' Kim Eagles is a name that is well known throughout the community as Kim not only won gold at the Pan Am Games, and bronze at the Commonwealth Games in Air Pistol, she most recently represented Canada in Pistol at the Sydney Olympics. Kim will coach and chaperone the BC Lower Mainland girls team.

Shooting competition is Tuesday, August 7 from 8 -12 noon at the in Maple Ridge.  Stadium and cross-country horse jumping will take place on Tuesday, August 7th from 1 -5 PM and August 8th from 9-12 noon at the Maple Ridge Equi-Sport Center.  Swimming is at the Walnut Grove Pool the morning of August 9th, with cross-country running in  the afternoon.

For more information, get in touch with Liz or Bob Inglis, Central Ontario Region Pony Club Communications Co-Chairs, at 416-493-1223 (office) or 416-491-4230 (home).