Every year, five of the 130,000 horses registered with the United States Equestrian Foundation (USEF) achieve so much that they are named USEF Horses of Honor and are nominated to win the Farnam®/Platform™ Horse of the Year. This year’s nominations were Ravel, the 11-year-old horse who won the FEI World Cup Dressage Final™ in April; Courage, the Combined Driving Pony who claimed her second USEF National Championship last year and was the Individual Bronze medalist at the 2009 World Pony Driving Championships; Kripton-Seni II, the 9-year-old Andalusian who swept several divisions in the International Andalusian and Lusitano Horse Association’s regional and national levels; CHOur Charming Lady, the American Saddlebred Horse Association Horse of the Year and World’s Grand Champion; and Sapphire, the mare who won show-jumping events across the nation. The announcement that Ravel had won the Farnam®/Platform™ Horse of the Year was widely predicted after a remarkable 2009 for the horse.
"I think it was a great year for US dressage if I may humbly say so. It put us on the world map, at the top. Only in America can you have a success story like this" said Ravel’s owner, Akiko Yamazaki.
And Ravel’s rider, Steffen Peters, was honored for the second year in a row with the USEF Equestrian of the Year Award for his "uncanny sportsmanship and his achievements on the field of play". In April, Peters became only the second American to win the FEI World Cup Dressage Final™, and the first to do so in the US when he stormed to victory in Las Vegas. The pair then cruised into Peters’ native country of Germany and through the CDIO Aachen achieving another first for the US: they swept Europe’s most prestigious event.
Photograph courtesy United States Equestrian Foundation