Ottawa, Ontario— Meg Sleeper, a veteran endurance competitor, notched another big victory while representing the United States at the recent CEI2* North American Endurance Team Challenge (NAETC). Sleeper, an Omega Alpha Ambassador, uses Omega Alpha natural equine supplements to keep all of her horses in top shape—including her winning NAETC mount, Shyrocco Rimbaud. Sleeper and Shyrocco Rimbaud had to fend off a challenge in the final section of the NAETC, an FEI sanctioned endurance race, and emerged with both the Individual Gold medal and a United States Team Gold medal.
Shyrocco Rimbaud, known around the barn as “Rim,” is a nine-year-old Anglo-Arabian gelding. He and Sleeper took an early lead in the NAETC race and entered the final 15-mile loop two minutes ahead of their closest competitor. Due to problematic footing near the finish line, Sleeper was hoping to avoid an all-out race at the end, and took a quick 15.5-mile pace to stay ahead of challengers. After the first half of the last loop, she did not see Jeremy Reynolds, who had been her nearest competitor. Sleeper said, “I was beginning to feel like we might have managed my plan. However, shortly thereafter he caught me.”
The two competitors slowed their pace to a speed of about 11 or 12 miles per hour to save their horses for what would likely be a strong push to the finish line. As the two leaders traded positions through the middle portion of the last loop, they discussed their concerns about the footing for the end of the race and conferred about how to finish the race safely. Sleeper said, “We came up with a plan and figured we would race the last 50 yards or so.”
As Sleeper continued over difficult terrain, she realized she no longer saw Reynolds. She recounted, “I didn’t know what happened, but he was nowhere in sight. I decided to continue a light canter and keep an eye out for him. A part of me felt guilty because we had agreed on a place to race from, so I kept watching, but I didn’t want to stop and wait for him.” Sleeper later discovered that Reynolds’ horse had taken an odd step after a particularly muddy section and the rider decided to dismount and jog his horse in-hand to the finish line. Sleeper completed six minutes ahead of Reynolds, who took second place.
Sleeper’s win on Rim was made sweeter by Rim’s ability to recover. Sleeper commented, “He had done such a great job on the course and he really looked spectacular the following day [at the best condition judging] in spite of the work.” Sleeper credits Omega Alpha Pharmaceuticals, Inc. for contributing to Rim’s excellent fitness and body condition. “I believe the Omega Alpha products we use help the horses recover from their work faster.”
Sleeper explained that endurance riders focus intently on conditioning. The intense workouts can lead to injury if the horses aren’t able to recover properly after their exercise. “The Omega Alpha products help protect the horses while we hone them to become the best athletes that they can be,” Sleeper commented.
Sleeper has been using the top-quality Omega Alpha supplements for ten years. Her favorite products include MinerEQTM, a complete vitamin and mineral supplement; Equisel-LyteTM, a post-workout muscle builder and rehydration aid; AntiFlamTM, which supports sound feet and joints; EnduraGinTM, to help restore energy; VantioxTM, an antioxidant; and Sinew-XTM, a supplement to promote healthy muscles, joints, and ligaments.
For over twenty years, Omega Alpha has been using botanical ingredients to create safe, award-winning products used worldwide by Gold medal athletes like Sleeper. The company’s wide selection of products includes supplements for respiratory, digestive, joint, hormonal, and immune health as well as products for detoxification, muscle rehabilitation, endurance, and performance. For more information about Omega Alpha and its range of health products for horses, visit www.OmegaAlpha.ca or call 1-800-651-3172.