Gladstone, New Jersey –December 31, 2001– United States Equestrian Team (USET) Olympic veteran Leslie Burr Howard of Westport, CT was named USET Athlete of the Month for December after she won the Grand Prix and World Cup class at CSI-W Amsterdam, December 13-16, and the Grand Prix at CSI-A Maastricht on December 2.
Howard riding Higher Ground Farm’s Priobert de Kalvarie had double clear rounds in both classes at Amsterdam to beat an impressive field of international riders that included 2000 Olympic individual Gold Medalist Jereon Dubbeldam of The Netherlands and Germany’s two-time team Gold Medalist, Ludger Beerbaum. In the World Cup class, she finished the jump-off in 38.35 seconds, almost five seconds faster than the second place finisher, Dutch Olympian Jan Tops who finished in 43.18 seconds. The following day in the Grand Prix, Howard finished in 35.89 seconds beating Dubbeldam who finished in 37.35 seconds.
Two weeks earlier, Howard started her impressive December when she rode Priobert de Kalvarie to the Grand Prix win at Maastricht, Holland.
A member of the USET squads that won the team Gold Medal at the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles and the team Silver Medal at the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta, "Leapin' Leslie" Howard entered her first show at age 6. As a junior rider, she won the 1972 ASPCA Maclay Finals, the United States' top competition for riders up to age 18.
Howard was honored by the USET in January of 1997 with the Whitney Stone Cup for long and meritorious service. She was one of 12 riders to contribute to the USET’s win in the 1997 inaugural Samsung Nations’ Cup Series, which culminated at Spruce Meadows in Canada, where she won the world’s richest Grand Prix event – the $523,465 Du Maurier Ltd. International Grand Prix.
In 1999, Howard was a member of the USET Silver Medal show jumping squad for the Pan American Games in Winnipeg, Canada. She was the Show Jumping World Cup champion in 1986.