The Temple Gwathmey Steeplechase Foundation announced the purchase of six flights of EASYFIX Fences. The fences, designed with the input of the NSA Safety Committee and NSA horsemen, arrived in the US two weeks ago and have been distributed to three separate locations in the mid-Atlantic, to give NSA horsemen an opportunity to school over the fences this fall.
The EASYFIX Fences will not be used in NSA sanctioned races this fall, but will be used in the spring for some races.
EASYFIX Fences are available for schooling in Pennsylvania, Maryland and Virginia. Schooling is free in all locations. Appointments must be made for schooling and releases must be signed.
Visit TGSteeplechaseFoundation.org for all of the schooling locations and details.
More about the EASYFIX Fences…
The National Fence has been used as the standard fence her in the USA since 1972 (nearly 50 years) with little or no change to the Fence other than adding ground and “knee” lines. the National Fence has been fully studied in a multi-year review process from the NSA Safety Committee, headed by Reynolds Cowles, OVM. The Safety Committee has kept the detailed statistics on yearly fatalities of the horses as well as injury to horse and rider for more than eight years.
After a thorough multi-year statistical and slo-motion video review of the current National Fence, the NSA took what it learned from the study, drawing specific and scientific conclusions on the National Fence and its weaknesses (and strengths). The NSA consulted and then contracted with EASYFIX of Galway, Ireland to design and customized a new Fence specifically to meet the needs of the NSA today and well into the future.
The EASYFIX Fence is similar in nearly all regards to the National Fence we’ve been racing over for nearly fifty years with a few notable exceptions. The EASYFIX Fence has been customized for the NSA and offers important state-of-the-art advantages over the current National Fence:
- There is no steel in the EASYFIX Fence – it is made of roto-mould plastic base, EASYFIX’s plastic birch, rubber matting, and styrofoam
- The EASYFIX Fence is the same height as the National Fence: 51 inches tall
- Each EASYFIX section is 46″ wide vs. 90″ allowing lengthening or shortening of a flight based on racecourse and entries with the ability to ship in our current 48 foot NSA trailers
- EASYFIX’s patented interlock between the sections is designed so that each section fits tightly and snugly on the “male” to “female” interlock. This unique design adds significant downward pressure and weight to each flight – the sections cannot and will not separate from each other
- Based on input from NSA horsemen and the Safety Committee, the breadth of the EASYFIX Fence is a bit broader than the National Fence by 8″ to encourage better jumping of maidens and seasoned horses alike
- The EASYFIX Fence is made of a one-piece construction – horses can not put a foot between the roll and the steel frame as there is no gap
- The EASYFIX Fence is exceptionally easy and considerably less time consuming to set-up offering significant consistency from one Race Meet to the next – no need for last-minute adjustments with tightening ropes and tarps
- YES, the exterior cover on the apron is BROWN turf not GREEN. Unlike we humans, horses cannot see differences in colors particularly brown, green and orange; only contrasting colors i.e. white (see this Exeter University study)
Based on strong encouragement and suggestions by NSA horsemen, EASYFIX designed just for the NSA, a very large “soft spot” in the middle part of the apron so that a horse sticking an errant foot into the apron will provide give. Unlike the current foam rubber roll, the soft spot is not bottomless giving upon to 6″ of support to a horse if he sticks his foot in a place it doesn’t belong.
Despite rumors to the contrary, this EASYFIX Fence cannot flip over.