The United States Dressage Federation (USDF) will induct multiple national equine champion Seldom Seen into its Hall of Fame (HOF), at the Salute Gala on December 1, 2005 at the USDF National Convention & Symposium in Burbank, CA. Inclusion in the USDF HOF is an honor bestowed on horses and individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the sport of dressage in the U.S.
Seldom Seen was an American-bred 14-2 hand Thoroughbred-Connemara cross gelding, owned by Peg Whitehurst and trained and ridden by Olympian Lendon Gray. Named for being so small that he could not be seen over the grass as a newborn foal, Seldom Seen was raised to be a Pony Club mount for Peg's daughter Kim. With Gray, he was the USDF Horse of the Year at every level from fourth level to Grand Prix, AHSA Reserve Champion at 2nd level, AHSA Champion at 3rd, 4th, Prix St. Georges, and Intermediaire 1, and earned an individual gold medal at the U.S. Olympic Festival in Syracuse, NY. After winning the Grand Prix, the Grand Prix Special, and the Grand Prix Freestyle at Dressage at Devon, Seldom Seen retired in 1987. He passed away in 1996 at the age of 26. According to Gray, "Seldom Seen brought dressage to everyone and showed it was for anyone."
"The USDF Historical Committee is particularly excited about this year's Hall of Fame inductee - Seldom Seen. Though he was considered an undersized, average mover, Seldom Seen showed us that with good training the 'average' horse could be amazingly successful. He was a horse that we could see ourselves riding or owning, thus his amazing appeal. Seldom Seen has done so much for our sport, from the grass roots to Grand Prix, with his tremendous enthusiasm and talent," said Historical Committee Chair Anne S. Moss.
Horses inducted into the HOF are those who have made outstanding contributions to dressage through their competition records in dressage or sport horse breeding, and/or served as ambassadors of the sport. Individuals inducted into the HOF are those who have made outstanding contributions to the development of dressage in the U.S. through their creativity, originality, vision, and sustained effort.
Each year, the Historical Committee invites USDF members to nominate worthy candidates for the USDF Hall of Fame. All nominations are thoroughly reviewed, researched, and discussed by the committee. Only those nominations that receive a unanimous vote are forwarded to the Executive Board for final approval. A display of all HOF inductees, including Seldom Seen, will reside at the new USDF National Education Center at the Kentucky Horse Park, where they will be publicly recognized.
Information about the USDF Hall of Fame can be obtained by contacting Kim Sodt at (859) 271-7876 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Next year's nominations for USDF HOF inductees are due to Ms. Sodt, at the USDF office, by May 1, 2006.