Jailhouse Waylon is 2020 AERC High Mileage Standardbred

Columbus, OH — The 2020 American Endurance Ride Conference (AERC) High Mileage Standardbred is Jailhouse Waylon. Now called Bubba, Jailhouse Waylon (by Big Rigs) made just one start at an Ohio fair as a 2-year-old but has since blossomed into an endurance partner.

Anita Rees from Columbia, Ky., got Bubba from the Starting Gaits Transition Program in 2018. Since then, she has become friends with the 7-year-old gelding’s race owners and they love hearing updates on his progress.

The 2020 American Endurance Ride Conference (AERC) High Mileage Standardbred is Jailhouse Waylon. Linda K. Toups photo.

“Bubba’s first endurance experience was doing an LD (Limited Distance 25 mile ride) in February 2020,” said Rees. “Before that we did maybe 10-20 miles a week for about a year, plus several camping trips. We didn’t do many rides this past season because of COVID, but also because I don’t like to start a young horse competing very heavily his first year in endurance.”

The pair did their first 50 mile ride in October and three weeks later another. All told they completed 200 miles at sanctioned AERC rides.

“I’d like to do six or seven 50s with him this (2021) season and maybe some multi-day rides if everything goes well,” said Rees. “And of course riding and camping for fun, too.”

Rees, who started the “Team Standardbred Distance Riders” Facebook group and encourages anyone with interest in Standardbreds in endurance to join, has some other great advice for those just starting out in endurance.

“Find a good mentor, either local or long distance, join AERC and some local endurance clubs. (The AERC website) www.aerc.org has lots of good info on getting started on their education links.”

Some other tips Rees has are:

– get your horse used to trailering and camping in different places
– make sure your horse will trot well in hand and stand quietly for vet exams and pulse checks
– volunteer to help at a ride before going to compete for the first time
– ride your own ride — whatever you do, don’t get caught up in “race mode”

“I like starting a new horse out at the very end after all the other horses have left (camp),” explained Rees. “That way he’ll concentrate on what I ask and hopefully not be worried too much about catching the horse in front of him. Endurance (at least the first few years when you’re starting out) should not be a race if you want your horse to last year after year. AERC’s motto is ‘To Finish is to Win.’ It’s just an incredible feeling to finish 50 or 100 miles with a sound happy horse who has plenty of energy left!”

The AERC High Mileage Standardbred award is given to the registered Standardbred that has the most miles ridden during the ride season (Dec. 1 through Nov. 30). All rides are considered, including the limited distance 24-35 mile rides, and standard endurance rides (50-plus miles). Riders must be a member of AERC in order to track horse and rider mileage.

Since 1996, the Standardbred Equine Program has worked with owners of off-the-track Standardbreds to educate the general public about the many disciplines Standardbreds excel at once they are retired from racing. For more information about the SEP at the USTA, visit LifeAfterRacing.ustrotting.com.

For more information about the AERC, visit their website at www.aerc.org.

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