RACKING UP THE MILES—REMINISONCE+/ AND LYNN KENELLY
"Lynn Kennelly and her endurance gelding, Reminisonce+ show off their "hardware"
following a great year on the trails."
There’s a celebrity in our midst. Actually, two. They would be: a 1997 grey endurance gelding nicknamed “Sonny,” and a 30-something young mother/wife/rider named “ Lynn.” Their claim to fame is a first place finish in 2006 in the Lightweight division in endurance riding in the Southeast region, third overall for the region, and fifth for the national AERC(American Endurance Ride Conference) 100-mile award, including winning the Region 12 championship 50 mile endurance ride.
Lynn Kenelly, an Anderson, SC resident, has been riding since she was six years old (in a hunter/jumper barn), but got seriously involved with Arabians during her first year at Clemson University when she met WCAHA member, Faith Connelly.
After falling in love with Faith’s Russian-bred stallion, Patrolon, Lynn selected a 3-year-old son of his named Reminisonce+/, out of a *Naborr daughter, and the pair haven’t looked back since.
“I started Sonny in limited distance (30 miles or less) AERC rides late in his four year old year,” says Kenelly. “He loves his job of going fast down the trail. We did his first 50-mile ride in the fall of 2002.”
The gelding has received regional AERC awards in 2003, 2005 and 2006; in 2004 Lynn took a break to have her youngest child and she hopes the pair can keep the string going. This talented horse has 550 endurance miles in 2006, with three 100-mile rides with first, second and third-place finishes. In September, Sonny and Lynn won the Region 12 Championship 50-mile ride in Big South Fork, Tennessee. The pair was second overall, and first place purebred across the finish line, with a ride time of 4:32—which averages out to about 12 miles an hour. Sonny also received the coveted AHA Best Condition award. (This ride earned him enough achievement points to be awarded his Legion of Supreme Honor.) The pair also garnered a top ten in 2005 in the Arabian Horse Association’s national championship 50-mile endurance ride held at the Biltmore Estate in North Carolina.
Training is time consuming, Kenelly says, and she credits her husband with making it possible, since he takes care of the home front when she is away on rides or training. “We have three children, two girls and a boy, all of whom love the horses,” she says. (The horses include a herd of broodmares on their 24-acre farm.) “Without my husband’s support, none of this would have been possible.”
When asked what’s next in the future, “Our long-term goals include riding internationally,” Kenelly explains, “and if Sonny is still going strong, I would love to try to make the squad for the World Equestrian Games to be held in 2010 in Kentucky.”
In the meantime, she enjoys starting young horses.
“Don’t tell Sonny, but right now I’m starting his back-up—a 3-year-old half-Arabian/half-Walking horse mare, and she’s doing great,” Kenelly says. “Hopefully, she’ll be another great 100-mile horse for me.”