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Dr. Peter Claydon and Remy are shown on the Tevis Cup trail, which winds up and down the Sierra Nevada for 100 miles.

A 15-year-old gelding with a history of overcoming debilitating injuries chalked up his latest comeback this month as he and his 67-year-old local rider completed a grueling, 24-hour endurance ride through the Sierra Nevada.

KHnight to Remember (Remy for short) and Dr. Peter Claydon placed 14th in the 100-mile Tevis Cup trail ride, which was finished by only 98 of the 204 horse and rider teams that began it Aug. 4.

“Remy is an amazing horse, and I am grateful to have such a wonderful partner,” Claydon said.

The ride starts at 5:15 a.m. at Robie Park, near Lake Tahoe, and takes 24 hours to complete the 100 miles on unlit, switchback trails, climbing to nearly 9,000 feet at Watson Monument, with sheer drops on one side, over a swinging bridge and down into river beds before it ends in Auburn, Calif. 

The Tevis Cup, which has been held annually since 1955, is widely considered the most difficult equestrian endurance ride in the country.

Remy was born and raised in the Santa Ynez Valley and came to Claydon from Ryding Hy Arabians as a totally untrained 5-year-old.

They began their endurance-racing careers together and have finished in the top 10 more than 40 times, including 11 wins.

However, in late 2008 Remy suffered a serious injury to his right hind leg and was out of endurance competition for a year while he was treated by Dr. Ben Bramsen of Oak Leaf Veterinary in Los Olivos.

Amazing everyone, Remy returned to endurance racing but in mid 2010 he reinjured the same medial suspensory ligament.

Once again, he was rehabilitated by Dr. Bramsen and was able to return to endurance competition in early 2011. 

“It was a Valley effort to get this horse back in shape from this devastating injury, which usually is career ending,” said Susan Miller, Claydon’s wife. “It was due to Dr. Bramsen and Angela Slater, owner of Grand Meadows, whose care and attention made Remy’s recovery possible.”

Remy has subsequently completed ten 50-mile races with three wins among his nine top-10 finishes.

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