Leslie Yates Memorial Coolest Ride and Tie and Biathlon set for Oct. 12

By: Special to the Journal
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Hype for the Coolest race in town is heating up.

Not more than a few hours after the 43rd annual World Championship Ride and Tie Race came to a completion in Fort Bragg last month, competitors of the sport were looking ahead to the Oct. 12 Leslie Yates Memorial Coolest Ride and Tie and Biathlon set to take place in Cool.

The Cool event will offer 22-, 14-, 9- and 5-mile Ride and Tie Courses and a 14-mile Biathlon Course (5-mile run, 9-mile ride, two people).

The ride and tie is a fundraiser for the Michael Gray Foundation out of Cool and the Leslie Yates Memorial Fund to help financially assist those who want to try the sport.

The sport of ride and tie combines trail running, endurance riding and strategy.

The goal is to get all three team members, two humans and one horse, across a 20- to 100- mile cross-country course by alternating riding and running.

Everyone starts out together. The rider, being faster, rides ahead and ties the horse to a tree and then continues down the trail on foot.

The team member who started out on foot gets to the horse, unties, mounts up and rides past the runner, ties the horse and this leapfrog continues the entire course.

The strategy of when, where and how competitors exchange riding for running is almost entirely up to each team to develop on their own. 

The course is on the beautiful Olmstead Knickerbocker trail that includes views of Sierra Nevada. Trails vary from single track to fire road, mostly rolling with a few of short/medium climbs ranging in difficulty from easy to moderate.

Rides will get under way at 8 a.m. on race day.

For more information, visit