At MOTDRA, you’ll find competition tempered with camaraderie. Veterans help newbies along the trail. All horse breeds and all ages of riders are welcome. We have something to offer everyone, from 15-mile, easy going competitive trail rides for beginners to hell-bent-for-leather endurance rides of 50 miles a day or more! Members earn points and miles along the way and are rewarded for their accomplishments.

Middle of the Trail Distance Riders Association was founded in 1990 by a group of people who enjoyed two forms of distance riding competition – competitive trail and endurance. They wanted to create an organization to sanction both types of rides, with enough rules to make the competition fair and fun, but without making the rules onerous. They wanted a club where people could learn about distance riding in a friendly atmosphere. Thus, MOTDRA was born. It has grown throughout the years. Most of our members hail from Nebraska, Missouri, Kansas and Oklahoma. Membership is open to anyone from any state.

MOTDRA Offers:

  • Competition and camaraderie
  • Friendly learning environment
  • All horse breeds welcome
  • All ages of riders welcome
  • Easy 15 mile competitive beginner rides
  • Difficult endurance rides of 50 miles a day or more
  • Six to ten competitions per year

Competitions and Events

The ride calendar usually consists of six to ten competitions a year. There are both competitive trail rides and endurance rides scheduled.

MOTDRA competitive trail rides are timed events. The ride management sets a specific pace for the ride, such as 5 or 6 miles per hour. This will vary depending on the terrain and the weather conditions. Riders are given an ideal time to finish the ride, and a short window of time in which to complete faster or slower with no penalties. Arrival at the finish line outside the ideal time window will lead to time penalties. All penalties, both time and horse related, are subtracted from an perfect score of 100. The ride is judged by a veterinarian who scores each horse on its fitness level before and after the ride. Penalty points are given for various problems in the horse’s condition. Mid-ride pulse checks are also scored. The horse with the highest score at the end of the ride wins.

We usually have weight divisions, based on the rider’s weight and all the tack. There also is a junior division, for riders under the age of 18. Juniors need to have an adult sponsor ride with them.

MOTDRA competitive trail rides generally have a 15-mile limited distance ride and a 30-mile open division. Ride managers may choose to set different mileage, such as 25 or 50-mile rides.

We usually have several sanctioned endurance rides. These are more of a race and are scored differently than competitive trail rides. Our Endurance Rides are AERC sanctioned and follow AERC rules. www.aerc.org

MOTDRA sets its ride calendar each January at the annual meeting. This meeting is scheduled the last weekend in January. We try to make the meeting location central for the majority of members. We are open to suggestions for new and better meeting sites.

MOTDRA Officers