Articles: Press Release
Laura Kraut Wins Jack Kelly Fair Play Award
Contact: Marty Bauman, (508) 698-6810
Gladstone, NJ-October 20, 2003-Laura 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 Committee's 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 Kraut's 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. team's 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. Kraut's 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 Jumping
Kraut and her husband, grand prix rider Bob Kraut, are the
parents of a young son, Bobby.
The 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 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.