Meet Our Rider: Michael Shaw (Australia)

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Your name, country of residence, and age?

Michael, Australia, 35

How long have you been riding horses for? - how many horses do you own?

Been riding on and off for 30+ years and own 2-3 horses depending on how well behaved they are this week…

What are your main motivations for entering The Gobi Desert Cup?

Always wanted to travel to Mongolia and I love long distance riding. This achieves both.

What have been your major highlights/achievements in endurance riding/equestrian sports?

I actually don’t ride as much as I would like to now. I mainly have transitioned to supporting events where I can as a ride director/president of a local endurance club.

What are your long-term goals in the sport?

Continue to ride for as long as my knees and various other ailments will hold out!

What do you fear the most about the race?

Mongolian Drop Bears!

List your current personal best in equestrian sports - other sports?

In the past five years? Probably running with a team, three endurance riding events in one year whilst being on the State Management Committee for Queensland Endurance Riding.

What do you feel are your main strengths for The Gobi Desert Cup?

Blind stubborness to continue.

What areas do you feel that you need improvement in before the race?

Physical fitness and ride fitness.

Do you currently do any other kind of training beside riding horses? If yes, provide details.

Planning to walk the Brisbane Oxfam 100km in late June in preparation for this event.

How much are you riding in preparation for the race, what is your training plan?

I have ridden less than ten times in the past two years. So I might try to increase this training plan prior to the event!

Why do you think people need to sign up to ride The Gobi Desert Cup with you this year?

One word “Schadenfreude”, translation: to watch with amusement my increasing pain of no preparation compound over a 400km course.

Finally, what would be a successful ride for you?

To complete is to win!