From the pages of the Glenside News (June 2003)…
On 4th may, in glorious sunshine, the first Sponsored Ride in support of our Parishes and Homestart took place in Grimsthorpe Park by kind permission of Grimsthorpe Estates.
Thanks to the welcome rain at the end of April, the going was excellent and 106 riders turned out to enjoy a ride of 8, 12 or 15 miles through seldom-seen countryside completely off the public roads. Many, having opted for the 8 mile course, changed their minds at the 6 mile Rest Stop and went on to enjoy a longer ride fortified by a drink and a selection of excellent cakes kindly donated by the Womens Institute.
Of course, this was not the Hunter Trials of former years and although the Committee members were sad to cancel that event, all are agreed that the decision was correct. Sponsored Rides can be organised and run by a minimum of volunteers (although more are always welcome) as opposed to the labour intensive Hunter Trials, now full of legal traps for the unwary. And of course, the removal of the compeititve element allows everyone to relax.
Without exception, every rider commented on how enjoyable the day had been and as the horseboxes streamed out of Grimsthorpe at 4 o’clock, there was much hand waving and shouts of “Great Day! Whens the next one?”
So, a success in its first year.