Olympic showjumper Kent Farrington has been crowned US Equestrian’s (USEF) international equestrian of the year 2020. Voted for by USEF members, the awards were presented at the virtual USEF Pegasus and Horses of the Year Awards Celebration on 16 January.
“Kent is one of top jumping athletes in the world, consistently producing dominant results in the United States and abroad year after year,” said a USEF spokesman.
As an eight-year-old boy with no family background in horses, Kent began with weekly lessons at a stable house in Chicago. From racing ponies to retraining ex-racehorses, Kent spent most of his junior career catch-riding for many industry professionals.
It was not until he turned 18 that Kent solidified his presence in the equestrian sports world when winning the 1999 North American Young Riders International Competition. From this moment onwards, he was in for a ride.
Kent was part of the silver medal-winning team at the 2016 Rio Olympics and the bronze medal-winning team at the 2014 World Equestrian Games with Voyeur. In 2019 he became the first US rider to win the CSI5* Rolex grand prix at CHIO Aachen and the Rolex GP at CHI Geneva in the same year with Gazelle, the 15-year-old mare.
During the 2020 season, Kent and his horse Gazelle won the $213000 American Gold Cup grand prix CSI4*. They also took the podium in the second place of the CSI5* Grand Prix of Wellington.
"I'm proud of where my team is today," Kent says. "It is a long way from where it began and I'm very fortunate to have an amazing group of people around me that have helped make my career what it is now. I'm excited to see where we can take it from here."
Apart from Kent Farrington receiving the William C Steinkraus trophy and Tracy Fenny receiving the Emerson Burr trophy, four other equestrians were recognised for their competitive achievements during 2020. We will be expecting more exciting tournaments and competitions with Kent Farrington, one of the best horse riders in the equestrian world.