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The VERA SMC has held an emergency meeting tonight to discuss the current COVID-19 situation and the Stage 3 restrictions being enforced by our State Government.  As a result of these restrictions all community sport, which includes endurance riding, has been stopped from 11.59 pm on Wednesday 5 August 2020.  

Horse riding can still occur provided members meet the restrictions determined for this activity which include staying close to home, maintaining social distancing, wearing face coverings and riding with only one other person and an instructor. 

The Department of Health & Human Services website details the restrictions:  https://www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/sport-and-exercise-regional-victoria-covid-19.  Please ensure that you all stick to the restrictions to avoid any fines for breaches.

We know that this will be disappointing news but this is only a short term halt that is necessary for the health of many Victorians.  We are endurance riders and we will endure this situation. 

In light of the lack of rides on the calendar and possible restrictions on training opportunities for members the SMC, in conjunction with David and Trish Reeves, have decided to cancel the State Champions for 2020.  This is, again, disappointing but necessary given the uncertainty that is our lives thanks to coronavirus.

Now that we’ve delivered the bad news here’s a couple of good news items.  Bek Williamson has offered to organise a virtual ride again to help keep us all motivated.  Over the next week or 2 Bek will pull together the details of the virtual ride and post them on the VERA FB page.  Please join us all in this event to keep up the fitness levels for both ourselves and our horses.

The other good news is that David and Trish Reeves have indicated they are happy to offer up the Dergholm ride still.  Running a State Championships without any lead up rides is not ideal and we want everyone to be able to come along and get at least one or two rides in before the season ends, COVID-19 allowing us of course! 

There will be a number of ride distances with, most likely, an elevated ride with a few points at which riders can retire.  We are still working through the details of what will be offered with Trish and David so we’ll keep you updated as soon as more information is made available.

Thank you for your understanding.  Please stay safe, follow the restrictions and take care of yourselves.  Please also make sure that you make your mental health a priority during this period of lockdown and seek help if required.