USET Foundation Recognizes Frank Chapot's Lifetime Achievements in Special Ceremony at Monmouth County Horse Show
By Kenneth Kraus for Phelps Media Group, Inc. - Show Jumping - Posted August 23, 2005
Joining the large crowd on hand to watch Sunday's featured event, the $30,000 Stillwell-Hansen Grand Prix, were many of Chapot's friends, colleagues, and members of various United States Olympics teams and Nations' Cup teams. The beautiful and touching ceremony took place just before the first horse entered the ring for the grand prix. Chapot entered the ring in a Land Rover supplied by Paul Miller Automotive Saab and Land Rover of Woodbridge, NJ.
As Chapot exited the Land Rover, he was greeted by his wife Mary, and two daughters, Laura and Wendy. Wendy was joined by her husband Ed Nunn.
USET Foundation and USEF representatives Frank Lloyd, Eric Strauss, Allan Shore, Jr., and Sally Ike were on hand for the Sunday presentation.
United States Olympians Anne Kursinski, Peter Leone and Nona Garson were joined by US Nations' Cup participants, Christine McCrea, Judy Garofalo, Callan Solem, Carol Thompson, Jimmy Torano and Eric Hasbrouck. Representing the Monmouth County Horse Show were Show Chairman Carol Stillwell and manager Leo Conroy with George Richdale and Mike Maxwell.
Monmouth County Horse Show announcer Steve Sarafin paid tribute to Chapot with the following words:
We are here today to honor, recognize, and thank renowned equestrian Frank Chapot, of Neshanic Station, NJ.
Frank Chapot has completed five decades as a key member of the United States Equestrian Team, first as a rider and just recently, retiring as the Show Jumping Chef d'Equipe.
Chapot first joined the United States Equestrian Team as the youngest member of the 1956 Olympic Show Jumping team, while still on active duty with the U.S. Air Force. During the next twenty years, Chapot compiled an amazing record of success with the United States Equestrian Team, including five more Olympic appearances. He participated on a record 46 winning Nations' Cup teams, won two Olympic Team Silver medals and an Individual Bronze medal in the 1974 World Championships. He posted victories in such prestigious events as the President's Cup, the Grand Prix of New York and London's King George V Gold Cup.
As one of the nation's finest junior riders, Chapot won the coveted ASPCA Maclay national championship in 1947. After his competitive riding career, Chapot became show jumping Chef d'Equipe for the United States of America.
Under his leadership and guidance, the United States Equestrian Team won its first-ever team gold medals in the 1984 Olympic Games and the 1986 World Championships.
At the 1988 Olympic Games, his Silver medal winning team was anchored by Greg Best, who was also a pupil and the Individual Silver Medalist, riding Gem Twist, a horse of Chapot's own breeding. Chapot added another Olympic medal in 1996, when as Chef d'Equipe, he guided the USET to the Team Silver medal at the Centennial Olympic Games in Atlanta. Following his 1996 Olympic success, Chapot guided the USET to another milestone in 1997, as the U.S. won the FEI Nations' Cup World Series Championship. It marked the first time the United States had won the title since 1968, when Chapot was a key contributor as a rider. His long string of successes continued in 2003, when he led the USET to Team Gold and Individual Silver and Bronze medals at the Pan American Games in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.
In all, through Chapot's leadership, the United States show jumping riders have claimed eight Olympic medals and nine Pan American Games medals.
On behalf of the Monmouth County Horse, the United States Equestrian Team Foundation and the United States Equestrian Federation, we are proud to salute and honor one of the greatest horsemen in the history of United States show jumping.
Let's give a special welcome to all of frank's friends, colleagues, students and fans.
Ladies and gentlemen, let's have a great Monmouth County Horse Show round of applause for Frank Chapot!
The U.S. Equestrian Team Foundation supports the competition, training, coaching, travel and educational needs of America's elite and developing International High Performance horses and athletes in partnership with the US Equestrian Federation.
For more information on the USET Foundation, please call (908) 234-1251, or visit USET ONLINE at www.uset.org.
By Kenneth Kraus for Phelps Media Group, Inc.
MEDIA CONTACT: Mason Phelps, Jr. of Phelps Media Group, Inc. at (561) 753-3389 or at email@example.com
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PHOTO CREDIT: Frank Chapot honored by USET Foundation prior to Stillwell-Hansen Grand Prix. Photo by Randi Muster