In recognition of his exemplary competitive record which placed the U.S. at the top of the world map. The 16.3 hand KWPN gelding was the first U.S. horse to win the Rolex FEI World Cup Dressage Final (2009) and to sweep all three Grand Prix classes at the CDIO Aachen (2009). He competed on the 2008 and 2012 Olympic teams and won two individual bronzes at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games (2010). Ravel was the Adequan/USDF Grand Prix Horse of the Year (2009-2011) and the 2009 USEF Farnam/Platform Horse of the Year.
It is a real pleasure, this year, to be honoring two Olympians. One is a horseman and the other a horse. Even though their Olympic debuts were sixteen years apart, they have a lot in common. Not only were their contributions to the sport in the U.S. outstanding, but each of them has had an impact on the international scene as well. Both continue to inspire us, as they have shown what can be achieved through hard work, talent and generosity.
Horses are the focus of our love and simply because no one has ever won a medal in equestrian sports without a horse. In 2010, Steffen Peters was quoted: "I've always been realistic about my horses, but realistic about myself, too. In the big scheme of things, riding horses might be relatively small, but it makes a difference in peoples' lives." Tonight, we are here to honor a horse which has had an impact on our lives. Or as Steffen once said: "I always appreciate Ravel for what he is - and - that is, a horse of a lifetime."