THE CLOCK IS TICKING!
2 WEEKS 1 DAY 17 HOURS 15 MINUTES LEFT.
I just looked at the Tevis website and the countdown calendar reads 2 weeks 1 day and 17 hours. I was sure the clock was wrong. I checked my calendar and said, "OMG". I am now aware that I better quickly turn my attention to getting ready for Tevis, or I am going to be one unhappy rider come ride day.
I also looked at the ride list and counted 14 Signature riders. While there were many of the same Signature Riders from previous years on the list, there were also several new Signature Riders. I want to thank each of them for their participation in the program.
If you have not thought about being a Signature Rider, please give it some consideration. It is an opportunity for you to provide some additional financial support to the Western States Trail Foundation. The WSTF uses these funds to maintain the Western States Trail, sponsor the Tevis Cup Ride, and preserve the history surrounding the trail. If you can, consider being a Signature Rider for $1,500. This additional funding does make a difference. Please consider helping the trail and the ride that we all enjoy so much.
RIDE DIRECTOR’S MESSAGE
The 63rd Tevis ride from Robie Park to Auburn is merely a few days away. I would like to go over a few key points:
Rider parking passes, rule books, and rider number information were mailed from Williams, California today. Riders in states outside of California, Nevada, Washington, Arizona, and Oregon will not receive mailings. Rather, those packets are being held in Auburn at the Tevis office located at 150 Gum Lane, Suite C. Jean will be in the office full time from July 23-27 and can provide assistance to you if you need to pick up your passes or need anything else.
In the interest of safety, we are again enforcing rules regarding riders using lights on the trail. You need to restrict your lights to 250 lumens or less, turn them off when asked by other riders, and turn them off when approaching riders in front of you. Cup committee members will confiscate lights that are obviously too bright, so leave them at home.
All vet checks (except the one hour holds at Robinson and Foresthill) are designed to have a one way flow for riders vetting their horses. Once you meet pulse criteria, the vet will examine your horse and ask you to trot away from him/her. If you are not called back, you will continue out of the trot lanes, remount your horse, and process through the out timer.
Again, we would encourage you to participate in the research study at this year’s Tevis
MEDIATORS OF INFLAMMATION IN ENDURANCE
HORSES ATTEMPTING A 100-MILE RIDE
This study is being conducted by Dr Allen Page of University of Kentucky. You may register for the study by completing pages 26 & 27 of your rider E Packet which was emailed on July 8, or follow this link to the online registration documents.
Page 2 of the Epacket contains more detail about the logistics and purpose of the study. Tevis is committed to learning more through research to help our athletic equine partners perform happily, efficiently, and successfully. Your participation is greatly appreciated.
Parking at Robinson Flat and Foresthill remain tight this year. I ask that you and your crew drive carefully and park as directed. It would be wise to bring a pop up for shade. At least one or more of these places will put you in the hot July sun. Ride management has arranged for less space for parking in the shade at Foresthill making more room available for crews and horses in the shade. When you go to the Foresthill VC to leave your vehicle (any time after 10 am on Thursday, the 26th) follow directions given to you by the volunteers, so horses and riders can get needed rest in the shady areas.
Starting Friday at 11:00 am, a complete lunch is available for purchase for $10 at the Robie Park vending area. Friday's dinner (a great carbo load for $15) starts at 5:45 pm and the mandatory preride meeting starts at 6:45 pm. Maria's Tacos will serve at Foresthill; Fast Friday's will serve beer and burgers at the McCann Stadium Saturday night, and we will also have a taco vendor at the Auburn Overlook for hungry crews awaiting the arrival of their riders. Native Son's will serve at the Wednesday Barbecue and a hearty Sunday morning breakfast in the Auburn fairgrounds stadium.
As is customary, the cup committee will be in the usual places along the trail to insure a fair and equitable competition. Be sure to thank the volunteers and managers of the stops along the way as they thrive on the love from the riders! They literally work all year for this one day as they aid you on your way to Auburn.
2018 Tevis Ride Director
The WSTF Trails Team has been hard at work orchestrating getting the entire 100 miles of traditional trail ready for this year’s event. The high country is now clear from Robie Park to Robinson's Flat. There is still work planned to happen in the coming weeks in Volcano Canyon, California Street Trail, and Quarry trail to clear overgrown sections, trees and eye jabbers but rest assured they will be taken care of prior to ride day.
Please continue to be aware if you plan to cross the river at Poverty Bar prior to ride day - water level is higher than normal. Those who have crossed between 9am and noon have had to swim a little. It is not advised to cross after noon. Proceed at your own risk. Ride day the water level will be lowered but please note this is ONLY on the day/night of Tevis.
Special thank you to our wonderful trails team volunteers for all of their hard work. We have logged over 1000 hours of trail work as of July 2018. This includes 330 hours with our own Tevis trail volunteers and over 700 hours by conservation group (GBI and ACE) crews paid for using Tevis trails funds. It takes a village to get this trail ready! Thank you for all of the trails reports and Facebook messages to trails manager Nicole (Chappell) Wertz - those locations with mileage and photos have been really helpful this year - thank you.
Best of luck to all 2018 Tevis Cup riders!
Nicole (Chappell) Wertz
WSTF Board of Governors
WSTF Trails Committee Leader
GET TRACKING – SIGN UP NOW!
Here's your link to sign up for satellite tracking at this year's ride.
Let your crew, friends, family and fan club watch your progress!
Tracking units will be available for pick up at Robie on Friday before the ride.
The Tevis office will be open daily from 7/23 - 7/26. We are located at 150 A Gum Lane, #103
in Auburn and you can reach us live at (530) 823-7282.
HEADED FOR THE ROBIE CUP?
Let WSTF or Debby Lyons know if this year is the year your horse is going for number five. We’ll be sure and announce the honor at the Sunday Awards Banquet.
EXTENSION FOR SEEDING
Tevis is aware that the AERC website has been down and many were not able to access the ride records for their horse. For anyone that did not submit a seeding form due to those technical difficulties, please complete the seeding form provided in your entry and submit it to the WSTF office no later than July 15th and it will be included in the seeding process.
WHEN WILL THE WEBCAST BE UP?
The Webcast will appear on the landing page of Teviscup.org the morning of the ride. Go to www.teviscup.org for all of the exciting updates.
RESEARCH STUDY NEWS – WE NEED YOU!
Please strongly consider enrolling in the research study being conducted this year by the University of Kentucky Equine Science researchers. They are looking at the role of mediators of inflammation as a function of exercise stress. They have studied thoroughbred race horses and found dramatic correlations with levels of cytokines in fitness and fatigue in these athletes. They would like to see to what degree these findings agree or disagree in athletes over 100 miles of exertion.
The study is entirely voluntary and involves blood draws at the pre-ride vet, at Robinson Flat, at Foresthill and at the finish. Each takes less than a minute and will not delay your veterinary exam.
A great deal of what we know about the physiology of strenuous exercise has been learned through Tevis research projects. In the long run both you and your horse will benefit.
Jeff Herten, MD
Chair, Tevis Veterinary Committee
EAGER TO HELP?
Sign up to volunteer here on the Tevis Website!
WHERE DOES ALL THE MONEY GO?
There is never any dispute that the Western States Trail Ride, commonly known as the Tevis Cup, is the granddaddy of all endurance rides. We are the top-ranking US 100-mile event in nearly everything: Total years running, number of entrants, number of finishers, and… cost to start. With an annual entry fee of $400 – many riders may wonder, where do my entry fee dollars go?
People may be surprised to learn that the ride isn’t structured to make very much income for the Western States Trail Foundation, the organizing charitable body behind the event. Our fee structure is based around a break-even point of the recent average number of riders. In fact, the $400 fee that most riders pay, doesn’t even cover their own full cost to participate. Which is why we are thankful for our Sponsors and Signature Riders, who help to ensure the ride does not run at an annual loss.
So, why are things so expensive? Well, because of all the agencies, landowners and challenging logistics to run such an event. By far our largest expense category, at $32,000 annually, is our fees, licenses, insurance and permits. WSTF has contractual obligations and fees due which include the American Endurance Ride Conference, Auburn State Recreation Area, United States Forest Service, California Department of Food & Agriculture, Foresthill Mill Site, Robie Park, Gold Country Auburn Fairgrounds, traffic control at Highway 49, bus service for Robinson Flat, CA State equine drug testing and more.
Our next largest expense is the cost to operate 19 different ride checkpoints (12 vet checks). With 100-miles of unique trail, the logistics of moving our veterinary staff, farriers and volunteers from check to check and keeping the flow of the ride uninterrupted is not a small task. Tevis employs 15 different veterinarians and multiple ride farriers. I think everyone can agree we are getting a true bargain to have such incredible staff, and pay for their accommodations, at a cost of only about $16,500. Other checkpoint expenses include a donation to our sweep riders, communications team, gas for volunteers using their personal vehicles to haul out pulled horses, volunteer shirts and various other checkpoint supplies including rider and horse amenities. These average around $14,000.
Other large expenses include our utilities such as porta-potties, water trucks, electricity, internet connections and the webcast hosting fees. These expenses run about $13,500. Then there are many other items which your entry fee supports, such as the rider’s ticket to the Sunday awards banquet, cost of trail marking materials, including the glowbars used for the overnight portion, various ride research projects the WSTF helps fund, and many other miscellaneous expenses.
The larger expense categories stated above do NOT include items and functions which should pay for themselves, such as the Tevis Forum publication, the Wednesday and Friday night meals, completion buckles and stall rental fees.
Taking all of these items into consideration, and using the last 10-year’s statistics, we generally start about 180 riders at a cost of around $425/rider – which is MORE than the actual entry fee. Again, this is why the Signature Rider Program, Sponsors, Vendors, and other donations are so critical.
Now, if you’ve been a good student and following along on your spreadsheet, you may be wondering – but what about the LARGEST expense of all? The one you haven’t even mentioned? What about the year-round cost of maintaining, clearing and improving over 100-miles of trail and staging areas? How is that funded? Well, by YOU! Any profit the ride makes, any donations, and our other year-round fundraising efforts are all directed to achieving our overall goal: to preserve the historic significance of this route and majestic riding trail penetrating the wild beauty of mountain peaks and valleys crossed by explorers, settlers and gold-seekers. So to all who contribute, whether by riding, volunteering, sponsoring, donating, or even just helping to spread the word, this event is a success due to you and we thank you for your support.
Treasurer, WSTF Board of Govenors
NEWS FLASH – 2019 RIDE DATE CHANGE
The Board of Govenors has voted to change the date for Tevis 2019 to July 20th (it was formerly July 14th). Experience has taught us that an early date runs a good chance of finding too much snow on the trail for a safe ride to happen. Mark your calendars!
SAVE THE DATE!
Tevis Educational Ride will be June 21 - 23rd, 2019.
WHILE YOU’RE IN AUBURN...
Come and check out the Tevis gallery display at Auburn’s City Hall.
The official Auburn Art Walk is July 20th if you can make that, But the gallery will be open 9 - 5, Monday through Friday for the month of July with special hours over the Tevis weekend.