Researchers have developed a points-based system for assessing the abilities of endurance horses based on biochemical and physical parameters, saying it measured up well against their performance in competition.
Mohd Adzahan Noraniza, Lawan Adamu, and Abdullah Rasedee suggest their system could be used to predict endurance horse performance in an actual race.
The trio have described their ranking system in the Journal of Advanced Veterinary and Animal Research.
They used nine seemingly fit Arabian endurance horses in Malaysia for their study. They were aged 5 to 17 years, with body weights ranging from 350kg to 450kg.
The study team designed a point scale in training based on lactate levels, plasma protein, creatine kinase, heart rate, and rectal temperature, all of which were measured after a 30km training ride.
Blood samples were taken for analysis immediately after completion of the training ride, and 30 minutes later.
The results were incorporated into a points scale for each parameter, with each scored on a scale of either 1-6 or 1-3. A lower points score represented a better ranking.
The placings of the horses in endurance competition tallied well with their overall rankings achieved under the scale in training, suggesting the system could be used to predict endurance horses’ race performance.
The authors thanked the State of Terengganu Endurance Team and Royal Terengganu Endurance Stable Team for their willingness to participate in the study.
Noraniza MA, Adamu L, Rasedee A. Ranking of endurance horses in training based on some selected biochemical and physical parameters. Journal of Advanced Veterinary and Animal Research. 2018; 5(3):299-306.