Dan was explicit in his Highland Sky details that ” no pets will be allowed on the course”. But, it seemed that someone had a “horse in this race”. Actually, it was a pony, and I’m pretty sure it wasn’t a pet, or service animal, for any of my fellow trail runners. Just after the first aid station, an ecstatic , recently liberated, (I think) colt joined the lead pack on the trail. Being a natural pack animal, the comraderie in that single file procession of trail lemmings looked like the perfect ticket out of Laneville. A few runners, probably from our nearby urban areas, looked a little nervous as the pony seemed intent on holding pace and feasting on the treats at AS #2. A runner, who I will just call “Laura”, turned to me and asked, ” is that your pony?”. I could only respond, “no, but I am missing a chicken”. As I grew up with equine, and knowing my horse women wife was in the field, I did feel it was my duty to take action. This trail was big enough for multiple species, but the switch backs were just ahead- I just need to snag that lunge line and end pony’s escapade. ( I’m pretty sure his owner was a little concerned as well ). I maneuvered over the lunge line and grabbed it on my first attempt. Unfortunately, I didn’t notice the runner between me and “my friend Flicka”, and inflicted an unintentional rope wedgie , so I quickly loosened the lunge line and freed that front runner. After reining in the unregistered beast and tying him off on a tree, I rejoined my friends on the trail. I really didn’t think much about my actions , but I did notice that later in the day runners referred to me as ” My Little Pony” , “Star Bright”, and “Misty of Dolly Sods”. Anyway, the drama subsided and the day was spectacular. I’ll be back next year for the 10th as a grand master ( what’s with these fluffy old guy divisions ?) Does that mean I have to play chess with Dan? Giddy up!