Laura Kraut Wins Jack Kelly Fair Play Award
Gladstone, NJOctober 20, 2003Laura Kraut of Oconomowoc,
WI, a member of the 2003 U.S. Pan American Games Show Jumping
Team, was named as the recipient of the United States Olympic
Committees Jack Kelly Fair Play Award. Established in 1985
to honor the late USOC President John B. (Jack) Kelly Jr., the
award is presented to an athlete, coach or official for an outstanding
act of fair play or sportsmanship displayed during the past year.
Sandra Kelly presented the award that bears the name of her late
husband to Kraut during the opening session of the USOC Board
of Directors meeting at the Renaissance Cleveland Hotel. In her
introduction of the honoree, Kelly shared Krauts recent
experience at the Pan American Games in the Dominican Republic,
where her horse developed a slight injury. Although not serious
enough that the animal would fail the veterinary inspection, there
was a possibility that its condition could impact the U.S. teams
chances to win the competition. Knowing that the USA needed a
top performance in order to qualify for the 2004 Olympic Games,
Kraut put her team first and stepped aside.
In nominating Kraut for the award, U.S. Equestrian Team (USET)
Executive Director Bonnie Jenkins pointed out that the rider could
easily have packed up and headed home once she was out of the
competition, but instead decided it was important to stay in Santo
Domingo and support her teammates by finding other ways to contribute.
Kraut assumed the role of team assistant, helping the riders in
the warm-up area, watching other teams horses compete and
reporting back with details of how the course was riding, and
even running to get water for the riders or whatever else was
needed. Krauts dedication to her team was rewarded when
the U.S. won the gold medal and secured a spot in the show jumping
event at the Athens Olympic Games.
Kraut began riding at the age of three in Atlanta, GA, with her
mother, Carol Kent. In 1992, aboard Simba Run, she was named as
first alternate for the U.S. squad at the Barcelona Olympic Games.
Kraut and Liberty were members of the U.S. show jumping team that
finished sixth at the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia,
and in 2001, that horse and rider combination won the U.S. Open
Kraut and her husband, grand prix rider Bob Kraut, are the parents
of a young son, Bobby.
United States Equestrian Team is a non-profit organization that
selects, trains, equips and finances equestrians of the highest
possible standard to represent our country in major international
competition, including the Olympic Games and the World Championships.
To accomplish this the USET seeks out and nurtures the development
of talented athletes - riders, drivers, vaulters and horses -
and provides the support and guidance they need to help them attain
their fullest potential. For more information on the USET, please
call (908) 234-1251, or visit USET ONLINE at www.uset.org.