Equestrian

 
2012 Preview
Gold medal winners in 2004 and 2008, the U.S. Show Jumping Team has a tough task to make it three in a row in London. Members of those two teams, Beezie Madden and McLain Ward have both been rebuilding their strings of horses, while Laura Kraut (2008) has her horse Olympic horse Cedric in top form.
 
The U.S. Eventing Team has been rebuilding after a disappointing 2008 Games. Phillip Dutton will be looking for his fifth Olympic appearance, while Boyd Martin eyes his first after being the top finishing American at the world championships. Meanwhile, Sinead Halpin leads the next generation after winning the USEF National CCI4* Championship in 2011 – in her very first try. Finally, Will Faudree has based himself in Europe to prepare his horses, after he was the reserve athlete in 2004 and looks to get one step closer.
 
The U.S. Dressage Team is led by the consistently brilliant Olympic bronze medalist Steffen Peters and Ravel. The pair garnered two individual bronze medals at the 2010 World Championships, a first-place finish at the 2009 Rolex/FEI World Cup Finals and fourth place in the horse’s Olympic debut in 2008. Team members from the 2010 World Championships – Tina Konyot, Katherine Bateson-Chandler and Todd Flettrich – will be looking for Olympic spots for the first time, while Olympic veteran Guenter Siedel has returned to top form with a horse he has been developing over the last five years.
 
Storylines
  • Both George Morris (jumping chef d’equipe since 2005) and Capt. Mark Phillips (eventing chef d’equipe since 1994) are retiring after the London Games. Both Olympians themselves, their service to the sport has been extraordinary and their medal counts speak for themselves.
  • Boyd Martin (born and raised in Australia) is the son of two Olympians who met at the 1968 Olympic Winter Games. His father, Ross, was a cross-country skier for Australia and his mother, Toy (Dorgan) Martin, was a U.S. speed skater. Boyd is rebounding from a horrific string of events after his barn burned to the ground in May and he lost six horses. His father then died as a result of injuries sustained in a cycling accident a month later.
  • Katherine Bateson Chandler was a groom (the person who takes care of the horses) for six-time Olympian Robert Dover at the 2000 Olympic Games. She represented the U.S. herself in 2010 at the world championships.
  • Guenter Siedel had a bad accident in 2010 that broke his pelvis and he has since made an astounding recovery.
  • Karen O’Connor rode in her first Olympic Games in 1988 – if she makes the 2012 team it will be her last as she has decided to retire (she won team silver in 1996 and team bronze in 2000). Her husband, David O’Connor, shared both team medals with her and won individual gold in 2000 and will become the Eventing Team coach in 2013.
  • Buck Davidson’s father, Bruce Davidson, is one of the most decorated athletes of all time in equestrian. He won the world championships twice (1974, 1978) and is the only person ever to do this in eventing. He has won Olympic gold and two Olympic silvers. Buck is now creating his own legacy. He rode both in the 1999 Pan American Games (sixth as an individual) and the 2010 World Championships, where he was part of the fourth-place team. 
Key Athletes
Dressage
  • Steffen Peters
  • Guenter Siedel
  • Tina Konyot
  • Todd Flettrich
  • Jan Ebeling
  • Catherine Haddad-Staller
  • Katherine Bateson-Chandler
Eventing
  • Phillip Dutton
  • Boyd Martin
  • Will Faudree
  • Buck Davidson
  • Will Coleman
  • Hannah Burnett
  • Sinead Halpin
  • Karen O’Connor
  • Jennie Brannigan
Jumping
  • McLain Ward
  • Beezie Madden
  • Laura Kraut
  • Lauren Hough
  • Candice King
  • Richard Spooner
  • Christine McCrea
  • Mario Deslauriers
  • Rich Fellers
  • Kent Farrington
Selection Procedures
Riders are selected to the U.S. Olympic Team via three events – the Rolex Kentucky CCI4* in April 2012 for eventing, the Show Jumping Selection Trials in March 2012 for jumping, and the Dressage Selection Trials in June 2012 for dressage.
 
Athlete Social Media
Communications Contact
Joanie Morris
jmorris@usef.org
(859) 225-2052