Rochelle Latka - RLA
Mongol Derby August 2022
Another race. Another country. Another caliber of horses – bring it on! Still reminiscing on the highs of the Gaucho Derby, I’m back and ready for round two of epic Equestrianist races! Despite exceeding my own personal goals for the Gaucho Derby, my confidence levels have not increased at all and so I am just hoping to cross the finish line of the Mongol Derby in one piece, without any vet penalties, and with as little bodily damage as possible ? I’ve been exceptionally lucky to have ridden in some incredible places in the world – the remote wilderness of Wyoming, the pampas of Argentina, the rugged mountains of Glacier National Park, the sandy shores of Ecuador, and a small village in Tanzania – but getting to ride in Mongolia has been an absolute dream of mine for several years and I cannot believe that it is about to come true!! I’m just hoping that I can hang on to these wild Mongol horses for long enough to actually enjoy the ride (and not just be clinging on in terror). Without any mountain passes, rock bogs, or ridiculous gates/fences to contend with, the navigation shouldn’t be an issue, but I know that there will be a dozen new challenges to deal with and I am beyond ready to give it my best shot! Similar to the Gaucho Derby, I have not done any extra special prep as my day job of training and exercising horses has kept me in decent riding shape, but I have taken to riding my three horses bareback to further improve my seat and balance – we’ll see if that is enough to get me to that finish line. While winning this race would be an unbelievable achievement, I am in it for the adventure, the unique horses, and nomadic culture, and am confident that I will get my fill of each!
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