Lexington, KY — The Grand Ballroom was packed as United States Equestrian Federation members and staffers joined to celebrate the men and women of the media for their contributions to the coverage of equestrian sport in 2004. The USEF Media Awards Luncheon hosted a total of 12 industrious nominees January 13, at the Seelbach Hilton in Louisville, KY. These reporters, photographers, editors, managers and producers gathered from across the country to hear USEF President and Olympic Gold medalist David O’Connor speak—this time, heaping the honors on those who watched and wrote from the sidelines, helping to promote the sport we love.
“It seems fitting that we honor those who work so hard to share our sport with people across the country and the world,” said O’Connor in his keynote address. “These men and women give a face and voice to equestrian. They keep the excitement level high for an already exciting sport. The popularity of equestrian sport in the United States is on an exponential curve upward, and our friends in the media are boldly meeting audience demands for coverage.”
Honorable mentions and first place winners were awarded in six categories, with the winners of each going on to compete for the Daniel P. Lenehan Trophy, a capstone award celebrating outstanding achievement in media excellence. The 2004 Award, kept under wraps until the luncheon itself, was presented to a very surprised Don Treadway, of the American Quarter Horse Association. The AQHA’s production, “America’s Horse: 2004 USEF Open Reining Championships” wowed the judges with its comprehensive coverage of reining.
“They made 360 degree spins, flying lead changes, fast circles and sliding stops look so effortless and exciting, our judges wanted to hop in the saddle and give it a try as they watched the broadcast,” O’Connor relayed with a grin.
The Federation also honored the first ever winner of the President’s Award, in celebration of unparalleled excellence in mainstream media coverage of equestrian sport.
“The inaugural winner of this year’s award touched our judges with their story of a firefighter, turned equestrian,” said O’Connor. “In a limited window of time, this highly skilled crew told one of the most heartwarming stories broadcast during the coverage of the 2004 Olympic Games, and brought smiles and tears to our faces, as we remembered the journey.”
NBC Nightly News employees Christiana Arvetis, Mike Taibbi, Steve Capus, M.L. Flynn, Meaghan Marcus and Nicole Sanderson took home the award for their outstanding contribution, “Amy Tryon and Poggio.”
The honorees in each of the six individual categories were as follows:
Equestrian Print Media - Publication: Winner — “Horse Illustrated” published by BowTie, Inc.
Honorable Mention— “Growing Up With Horses: 2004 Parents’ Handbook & Resource Guide” published by Primedia Equine Network
Equestrian Print Media – Single Article:
Winner—“Riding Quicksand” by Elizabeth B. Herman
Honorable Mention—“Presto Too Works His Magic” by Stephanie Stephens
Non-Equestrian Print Media – Single Article:
Winner—“Hunters Gallop Into the 21st Century” by Paula Rodenas
Winner—www.EquiSearch.com, published by Primedia Equine Network
Honorable Mention—www.TheHorse.com, published by The Horse: Your Guide to Equine Health Care (Bloodhorse Publications, Inc.)
Winner—“America’s Horse: 2004 USEF Open Reining Championships” produced by the American Quarter Horse Association
Honorable Mention—“2004 Rolex Equestrian Championships” produced by Carr-Hughes Productions
Winner—“Peter Wylde and Fein Cera: No Guts, No Glory—Meeting the Olympic Challenge” by Diana De Rosa
Honorable Mention—“Nicole Simpson Taking Down an Oxer at the Olympic Show Jumping Trials in California” by Charles Mann
For more information, please contact Sarah Lane, Public Relations Manager on (859) 225-6974 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. USEF press releases are available on our website – www.usef.org.