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Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Speed Skater vs. Rough Shod Icelandic Horse: Place Your Bets!


Claudia Pechstein may be in for a surprise on March 8th. The former world champion in speed skating has won five Olympic gold medals, two silver and two bronze...but has she ever skated against a horse wearing studded shoes?

At the European Championship on Ice, which will be held in Berlin, some of the best Icelandic horses in Europe will be tolting at high speed against each other, but there will also be held a very exciting speed duel between Pechstein and a pacing horse.

Pechstein is featured on a video on YouTube skating backwards; she even looks fast that way. I hope they clip those furry Icelandics to cut down on wind resistance. Claudia doesn't seem to have any.

These horse can fly across the ice, it should be a great race! They wear sharp-studded shoes. Not far from here, harness races are held on the frozen lakes in Maine in winter. Those horses allegedly wear shoes with a continuous outside "sharp" rim.

Photos below from the Icehorse event web site.


1 comment:

Judy said...

We're not so thrilled with horses running on ice. The horse's foot should slide into place. The nails / studs grab the foot and the shock / torque travels up the leg, and not a good thing for the hocks. Spavin is relatively high in Icelandic Horses, so the additional stress is not a good thing.

If one *has* to travel on the ice and expose the only mode of transportation to this type of stress, that's one thing.

But to do it strictly to put some money in someone's pocket, at the horse's expense, is not a good thing, in my opinion.