American and Olympic rider Laura Kraut received the Whitney Stone award last weekend during the Winter Equestrian Festival in Wellington.
This award is given each year to a rider of continued excellence in international competition whose level of sporting conduct and contributions as an ambassador of sport exemplify the highest ideals and traditions of the US Equestrian team.
“The Whitney Stone Cup is something I’ve always known,” Kraut noted. “I’ve seen some of the people I love the most in our sport win, so to be that person and to have that award is amazing. I’ve never seen myself as the person who got the awards.”
In 2021, Kraut represented the United States on several Nations Cup teams and at the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, Japan, where 12-year-old Kraut and Palotino, of Hanover Farm, helped the United States to their second straight silver medal. Olympic team medal. After a successful summer, Kraut and her Olympic horse were selected to be the starting line-up for the US NetJets® vaulting team at the Mercedes-Benz CSIO5 Nations Cup* in Aachen, Germany. The duo’s efforts helped the United States win for the first time since 2005.
In addition to focusing on its own goals, Kraut is committed to working with and mentoring younger generations of riders in an effort to help them successfully represent the United States on the biggest international stages.
“I absolutely loved being a part of the American equestrian teams, and I’m excited to inspire young riders to do the same,” Kraut said. “It is important to me that the United States remains at the forefront of this sport around the world. It is really great to be a part of the first experience for a rider in a team. For example, this year in Aachen, it was great to ride in a team with all the riders. Young people, and being with them for that experience, is like the first time I went.”
The Whitney Stone Cup, presented to the team by USET officers and directors, is awarded in honor of the late Whitney Stone, who served as USET Chairman and who played a key role in creating a civilian team when the Army withdrew from competitive equestrian sport after 1948.
Source: FB USET Foundation Inc.
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