The 160 km from Florac at the crossroads!

Sep 14 2023

The 2022 edition of the 160 km of Florac marked the opening of a new era. After five years of collaboration, the Sultanate of Oman had in fact ended its partnership. The United Arab Emirates took over to support the organizers. Jean-Paul Boudon gives a very positive assessment: To the extent that they are coming back this year, it is because they are satisfied! Especially since the Al Maghaweer stable based in Abu Dhabi also supported the Barre-des-Cévennes races at the beginning of July which brought together 250 horses over three days. The development of these summer events is also exponential. Work has been carried out on the trails to the great delight of the riders. The links are strengthening since it is the government of Abu Dhabi which takes charge of the timing of the 160 km of Florac through the intermediary of Emirates international endurance village (EIEV) of Sheikh Mansour (the owner of the football club of Manchester City). It’s a nice gift even if it complicates our task, confesses the president of Lozère Equestrian Endurance (LEE). The need for electricity and internet connection is increasing. The horses are equipped with a transponder and the riders with a GPS. In each veterinary control area, we will install special screens so that all the data appear: the route taken by the horse, its heart rate, its metabolism. However, there will still be no riders from Abu Dhabi at the start of the 160 km of Florac We are not there yet, recognizes Jean-Paul Boudon. I know that the Al Maghaweer team wants to establish itself in Europe and particularly in France, as the sheikh's M7 team did a few years ago. from Dubai to Lisle-sur-Torn in the Torn department. You have to give time Abu Dhabi contributes €50,000 LEE's annual budget (necessary to offer the Barre-des-Cévennes races and the Vallon d'Ispagnac horse week with the 160 km of Florac as the highlight) reaches €180,000 • Abu Dhabi has not not modified its endowment of €50,000 But they still add the €10,000 to €12,000 for timekeeping, underlines the president of LEE. We benefit from the support of the Departmental Council, whose aid remains at a very good level. The subsidy from the Regional Council is substantial but it is reduced over the years, this is the case for many associations. I have not forgotten the essential logistical support of the municipalities. This Saturday, September 16 from 5 a.m., the Pré-Morjal site in Ispagnac will see around forty horses set off for this extraordinary competition that remains the 160 km from Florac. A figure identical to that of the last year. It’s a more than honorable score, indicates Jean-Paul Boudon. We are doing well when we see the concentration of the calendar: the European Championships in Ermelo in the Netherlands two weeks ago, the preparatory test for the 2024 World Championships in Monpazier in the Dordogne fine taste... We had to adapt by shifting one week from last year (the 160 km of Florac took place on September 10, 2022)” With the 100 km and 120 km races this Thursday, September 14, 120 couples will explore the Lozère trails. Foreign riders (Italy, Switzerland, Spain) will be present. The president of LEE is keen on this plurality of events: If we did all that only for the 160 km, we would need a huge sponsorship! The financial aspect is not the only one to take into account in our thinking. We want to give opportunities for riders and horses to qualify in 100 and 120 km. Regulations are getting tougher and tougher. It's an obstacle course before you can start a 160 km The horse must complete the 120 km with the same rider We are a renowned breeding ground Our horses have been world champions and European champions It is our responsibility to offer them races to develop World vice-champion, the Spaniard Jaume Punti comes to win the 120 km. European vice-champion his partner Maria Alvarez is aiming for the 160 km. A Frenchwoman could upset this announced triumph and she knows our department well! About fifteen years ago Annie Marchant was director of services at the Lozère prefecture office. She now rides an excellent horse and she doesn't hide not its ambitions Third in the 160 km of Florac in 2019, this ma rathonienne is more than ever a candidate for victory The 160 km route from Florac remains classic with the specificity of being an online race which contributes to its worldwide notoriety Departure from Ispagnac to reach Barre des Cévennes in the middle of the night, crossing the Aigoual to arrive at Camprieu After a forty-minute stop, direction Meyrueis, the Gorges de la Jonte, the Causse Méjean to the aerodrome from Chanet to go down towards Pré- Morjal The last stage then arises from Ispagnac to Ispagnac passing through the Col de Montmirat It is the justice of the peace. 24 km including 11 of ascent with a positive altitude difference of 500 to 600 meters