Calgary (Rural Roots Canada) – A mounted horse regiment known worldwide is based in Alberta.
Captain Ali Mansour leads the Mounted Lord Strathcona Horse Mounted Troop.
He says the regiment has a history that goes back to the Boer War at the turn of the 19th Century.
“He was a philanthropist and the Chair of the Hudson Bay Company. I think he began with the CP Rail,” Mansour says.
He noticed that during the Boer War, the British regulars were having trouble with some of the Boer-Mounted Rifleman.
“He decided to raise a cavalry regiment based off of all the cowboys, prospectors, and ranchers that he saw who had similar types of skills to go and fight in the Boer War. So he raised the regiment himself.”
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Mansour says they like to perform the musical ride, which includes a lot of equestrian troop maneuvers when they perform at the Calgary Stampede.
“You’ll see the troop functioning as they would on the battlefield with their maneuvers, and then afterward they have an exciting tent pegs portion where the riders go head to head, trying to pick up tent pegs when they charge.”
He says it’s a pretty exciting show to watch.
“It’s all done with some of the current music, so really hypes up the crowd, but we also pay homage to the soldiers that used to be in the unit and their Calgary traditions.”
The regiment has been around for nearly 125 years and performs every year at the Calgary Stampede.
“As far as I know, from the resurgence of the mounted troop in 1974, they’ve been with the Stampede.”
The mounted troop moved from Calgary to Edmonton in the late 90s. However, the time they spent in Calgary is not soon forgotten. Most evident by the fact they have a banner over the top of the stables that says July 1, 1900, Calgary, Alberta.
“That really hits home for us because this is our home.”