February 9, 2012 -- OT Sara Moniet RSI (Rave On Ravenwood x OT Dysara RSI), a 2004 dark chestnut owned by M.A. "Crockett" Dumas of Escalante, Utah was named the Arabian Horse Association (AHA) 2011 Distance Horse of the Year, adding one more award to a long list of 2011 accomplishments.
"Sara" covered 1,675 competition miles in 2011, completing 31 of 31 rides with 10 overall wins and 9 Best Conditions. The 7 year-old mare won two 200-mile rides, one 165-miler, one 155-miler, and finished all but one of her rides in the Top Ten. Coupled with Distance Horse of the Year honors, Sara was named the AHA High Point 50-99 mile Endurance horse. The American Endurance Ride Conference (AERC) awarded Sara the War Mare Award and the Belesemo Arabians Pioneer Award for the Heavyweight Division. Lastly, Sara was awarded the Drinkers of the Wind performance award by the Institute of the Desert Arabian Horse.
"Well everybody thinks their horse is the greatest horse in the world," says Crockett Dumas. "But she is really a great all-around horse. I bred her and her mother and father … after riding 37,500 miles, I don't spend a lot of time on good horses. She's a great horse."
Dumas has been breeding for excellent endurance horses since the late 70s and has been successful, producing several champions over the last 30 years. "She's no accident," he says about Sara, but Dumas noticed a spark that made her standout in his eyes in 2011. While competing in multi-day races, scheduled one after another, other riders chose to ride a combination of horses, while Sara rode on through. "When you have fresh horses thrown at you every day; for a horse to do what she did--complete, run up front, and win--that's really something very, very special. And carry more weight at the same time," says Dumas referring to the heavyweight division (when tack and rider weigh over 211 lbs. combined) in which they ride.
"She's got a great mind. She really likes people. I don't pay much attention to what they look like, but she happens to be really pretty--she looks like her foundation mare."
Dumas plans to continue to use Sara in endurance races and might add to the one foal she has had, but his breeding has slowed in recent years due to the poor economy. He has no doubt in her ability to continue on the path she's on now. "At this age, I'm the one that gives out. I'm the weak link! Sara has no trouble at all."