Gordy Ainsleigh: De jinete a creador del Ultra Trail


Gordy Ainsleigh: From rider to creator of the Ultra Trail

At The Indian Face we have designed caps for almost all sports that are practiced in free sports and that take place in a natural environment. In today's post we talk about our Born To Ultra Trail caps and Born To Run.We also tell you the story of how the Ultra Trail was born.

If you still don't know it, we encourage you to read it, it's worth knowing!

Keep reading…

The birth of the Ultra Trail dates back to the summer of 1974, specifically to August 4, when an athlete named Gordy Ainsleigh set out to compete in the Western States 100 Mile race. This race was on horseback, but Ainsleigh started it and finished it by treading steadily in her footsteps. No horse.

The events that led this athlete to compete running and not on horseback seem to have been taken from a sitcom, it is not known exactly if they are true or if they have been mixed up, as usually happens with the stories that they go from mouth to mouth, reality with fiction.

The Western States 100 Mile is a race that involves covering 100 miles in less than 24 hours. The start of the tour is located in the Tahoe basin, passing through Auburn, crossing high mountains and deep canyons belonging to the Sierra Nevada.

A long race, a hard route, and a peculiar man were the factors that were needed for something extraordinary to happen: that the ultra trail became popular. That a man, on foot, could achieve what some horses were not able to achieve.

Gordy was a child somewhat different from the others; His parents divorced before he was born, his mother was a nurse and his grandmother was the one who did the housework and took care of him and his brother. At that time, having a family different from the others was not seen with good eyes, so Gordy was a lonely child and the other children did not show much intention of joining him.

However, he was loved and wanted at home, so he began to go, at lunchtime, day after day, running home, where he ate with his grandmother, and then came back, running again to school. Thus begins his career as a runner; a career that he continues when he becomes a newspaper boy. The route he had to take was long, and since the city where he was born and where he lived, Nevada, is located on seven hills with steep slopes, it was also hard. To speed up the march, Gordy ran this route, which made him a daily runner.

In high school he made the track team; but he was surprised to find that, despite having been running day after day for the past few seasons, he was the second slowest runner on the team.

When he got into college, Gordy started renting horses from the Recreation Department, and after a while, bought his first horse. A little later he discovered the existence of the Western States Ride. The following year (1971) Gordy rode the race without stirrups, which drew incredible attention from the organizers of the event, who included him among their group of friends.

Gordy Ainsleigh

Gordy's horse was strong and robust, but love blinded the rider and in a passionate and romantic act, he gave it to a girlfriend who did not last long in her life after delivering that precious present.

All the events that were happening in Gordy's life were leading to him being the creator of Ultra Trail Running, but he didn't know it yet.

Seeing himself without a horse and wanting to compete, the protagonist of this story began to desperately search for a new horse to act as a Rebel (This was the name of his first horse). A friend of his, of questionable morals, sold him a half-lame rocinante, which became permanently lame a week before the ride.

A good friend heard the sad and devastated Gordy say that he couldn't run the race that year, and that was the only reason he had to be there. Her friend told her why not, she was trying to do it on foot.

The athlete/jockey was thinking about this proposal for a while. He kept training for races and marathons, but they were always on trails and didn't feature terrain, distance, and of course, Western competition. Competing against horses was a sticky subject.

Nevertheless, she began training for this race with insight, under the sun, the heat of early summer and the harshness of dry terrain.

Gordy Ainsleigh creador del Ultratrail

On the day of the race the thermometer marked 42ºC in California, several horses died due to the heat and the conditions in which they were found. Gordy started the race motivated, but just before reaching halfway, he was exhausted and determined to give up. But his good friend Diane, who accompanied him during all stages of the race, offered him some food, water, massaged his legs and motivated him to keep running to the finish line. And he got it. From that day on, glorious and known to all lovers of horseback riding and running, the Western States became the Western States Endurance Run and every year more athletes like Gordy joined, wanting to make the seemingly impossible possible.

Thanks to Gordy Ainsleigh today there are Ultra Trail races in the United States and, in general, around the world. Although, who knows how many crazy things have been done on the mountain of which we have no record…

We hope you have found this article interesting, it has motivated you to set yourself challenges, objectives and goals. Although the road is not always easy, you may encounter obstacles, and you think you can't take it anymore, if you fight with all your might, you will achieve everything you set out to do.