About The Race
“It is truly the most character building challenge I have ever faced and overcome”.
Kendall Moore 2017 Gobi Desert Cup Rider, Stannum Stock Horses.
The ADVENTURE of a LIFETIME.
Discover the slowly disappearing Mongolian Nomadic lifestyle, ride one of the oldest and toughest horse breeds in the world. Be part of an authentic Nomadic camp.
Compete against riders coming from the four corners of the world. Cut your self off from the modern world.
Our next race 27 August- 6 September, 2019 is now accepting applications!
You may wonder, who can ride The Gobi Desert Cup?
Our riders have ranged from 24 to 71 years old. Anyone over 18 may apply.
Professionals. We have had international endurance superstars who have won national championships and participated in the world championship, FEI qualified ***. We also had some talented and brave eventers and show jumpers. Exceptional horseman and woman who had taken parts in the brumby challenge, colt starting also participated. Oh, and let's not forget the camp drafters; those are also to watch out for usually!!
Amateurs. The other half are usually amateurs with an attitude that get them through anything. Everyday riders who trained, prepared, turned up and crave adventure. They make it look easy, turning up every morning with a smile and determination. They seek advice, take everything in stride and believe that when things got hard and things go wrong that’s when attitude defines the race. ATTITUDE. Being physically and emotionally fit is the secret their carry.
Have you got the
HORSEMANSHIP it takes?
Mongolian horses are semi-wild and live outside 24/7 and 365 a year. Temperatures in Mongolia range from -40 degrees Celsius to +40 degrees Celsius. They are hardy, sturdy, and full of heart. If you put your trust in their hoof, they will give you everything.
They are different than the horses you are accustomed to. Mongolians do not have pets and do not perform groundwork. Our herdsmen will be there every step of the way to support you, help pick horses, and exercise them for you. And often, take the opportunity to show off their own riding skills!
Each day you will have to bond with your horse quickly in order to successfully complete each day. Trust them, communicate with them, and they will give you everything.
The race is based on a point system. Riders will compete individually and in teams of four.
What happens if a rider vets out? They will not get any points for the day but will keep riding the following day. If vetted out at the 40km vetting, they will be carried forward and the horse will be picked up.
Riders will be invited to an opening and closing ceremony with local entertainment and a presentation of awards.
There will be an award for the best-managed horses through the race.
Daily awards for the best-managed horse and best sportsmanship.
Each night riders will be invited to a briefing before they enjoy a chef's cooked meal. We will hand out the daily awards and discuss anything we feel need to be mentioned or reinforced.
It is also a great time to talk about your day, ask for advice and most importantly share stories around a glass of fermented mare's milk!
What is included in your nomination?
Half day introduction and briefing at The Corporate Hotel and convention centre in Ulan Bataar the 27th of August from 1PM, the afternoon before pick up (This is where pick up/drop off occurs, we have negotiated a generous 30% discount). Riders will be invited to a compulsory briefing, where we will discuss the course, vetting, rules and introduce the officials). The saddles will be handed over at the hotel. Riders must fit their stirrups/fenders before to come to start camp the following morning.
Pick up and drop off at the Corporate hotel and convention center in Ulan Bataar the capital of Mongolia on the morning of 28th of August 2019 to return on 6th of September 2019.
A 2-person tent (with someone of your choosing) with basic amenities. You will have no access to running water except a camp shower, no electricity and most likely no phone service! You will be off the grid and immersed in a culture most people will never experience.
Chef-cooked meals and traditional Mongolian food during the different ceremonies including fermented mare's milk.
A team of professional FEI-qualified veterinarians who have international vetting experience at high endurance level to insure international horse welfare standards.
Trained Mongolian horses, and a crew to care for them, train them and transport them. The horses are selected then transported to our training centre where they get trained, fed, conditioned and monitored. There will be over 150 horses in training, and that requires a lot of people and feed!
A crew to set up and transport camp. Horseman and herders to train, manage and transport the horses prior your arrival in Mongolia.
A doctor to follow you during the race and attend any accident that may occur.
Officials to be at the checkpoints and strapping stations every 80km at 15, 30, 55, 70km; they will report to the Ride Director any incident and provide you with water for both horses and riders.
Local entertainment including a traditional Mongolian race, musician, dancers and more...
A camel race on the last day before the presentation, that is the big surprise! Great fun even after 480 km!
We also help by reminding you about organising your visa and insurance paperwork. Rider's safety and horse welfare are a priority.
From pick up to drop off, it is all inclusive. Transport, food, accommodation and the occasional extra party or treat!
WHAT IS NOT INCLUDED IN YOUR NOMINATION?
Insurance, you must provide us with a current certificate of insurance.
Hotel, you must make your own reservation at the Corporate Hotel and convention center, using our form to get the 30% discount.
Visa (some countries require a visa to enter Mongolia).
Flights, hotel depending when you arrive and leave Mongolia.
Fenders, cage stirrups, helmets, back pack with water bladder and bedding (sleeping bag, camping mattress and pillow).
You will also need a stethoscope and stop watch.
*All riders will receive communication to help prepare them for the race and requirements.
Upon receipt of your letter of invitation a NON-refundable deposit of 10% of full nomination fee must be paid to secure your place in the Gobi Desert Cup.
Nomination fees: Total: AUD$10,000. No other currency accepted. Payments will be made using our secure PayPal link.
The payment schedule: 10% upon sign up (deposit); 50% by the 3rd of February; 75% by the 10th of April; and 100% by the 5th of July 2019. Late payment will accrue 7% p.a. interest calculated daily. *You may also choose to pay the full nomination.
We have a no-refund policy; therefore, we encourage riders to insure their nomination fee.