US Equestrian congratulates 2022 International Equestrian of the Year Adrienne Lyle and 2022 National Equestrian of the Year Hunt Tosh. Lyle and Tosh were nominated as Equestrians of Honor and selected by US Equestrian member voting in December. Both Equestrians of the Year were honored at the 2023 Pegasus Awards Dinner at the USEF Annual Meeting in Lexington, Ky., on Jan. 12.
International Equestrian of the Year – Adrienne Lyle
Olympic veteran Adrienne Lyle (Wellington, Fla.) continued to impress dressage judges and fans in 2022. With her longtime partner Salvino, Lyle earned a personal best score of 85.580% to win the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle at week 11 of the Adequan® Global Dressage Festival. The pair traveled to CHIO Aachen in June where they placed second in the CDI4* Grand Prix against some of the world’s best.
In August, Lyle and Salvino posted an 83.704% in the Blue Hors FEI World Dressage Grand Prix Freestyle Championship—the second-highest score of her career and good for sixth place amongst a strong international field. The combination was the only American team partnership to compete in the Grand Prix, Grand Prix Special, and Freestyle at the World Championships, where they also played a key role in qualifying the U.S. Dressage Team for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.
Lyle’s talent and commitment to the future of the sport was on display at the 2022 U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions where she took home two national championships, winning the Markel/USEF Young Horse Four-Year-Old Dressage National Championship with Fürst Dream and the Markel/USEF Young Horse Five-Year-Old Dressage National Championship with Valor.
“I want to thank everyone who took the time to vote in the USEF Equestrian of the Year awards. I’m very humbled to receive this award,” said Lyle. “One of my favorite sayings is that when a rider stands on a podium, they never stand alone. It is incredible how many people’s dreams are intertwined in this sport of ours, and just what a huge village it takes to help make these dreams come true. I’m thankful to all the amazing people in my life who have supported me and helped shape me into the rider and horsewoman I am today. I want to say a special thank you to my long-time coach, Debbie McDonald; Salvino’s owner, Betsy Juliano; and my whole team of fabulous grooms at home, who are such an integral part of any success our team has. Last but certainly not least, thank you to these horses—these amazing animals who allow us to be part of their journey and bring so much joy to so many lives.”
Lyle is a 2022 winner of the William C. Steinkraus Trophy, which is presented to an equestrian competing in the Olympic disciplines of dressage, eventing, or show jumping.
Hunt Tosh is among the busiest riders on the hunter circuit, and in 2022, he continued to show—and win—across divisions all season long. With the Wheeler family’s 2011 Holsteiner gelding, Cannon Creek, Tosh had numerous victories in the high performance hunters at Ocala, and capped off the winter season with a win in the $25,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby Championship. The pair went on to win High Performance Hunter Championships at the Devon Horse Show, Upperville Colt & Horse Show, Pennsylvania National Horse Show, and National Horse Show.
Tosh had numerous wins in 2022 in green hunters, including the 3’6” championship at Ocala Winter Festival and a reserve championship at the National Horse Show with Redfield Farms’ 2012 Dutch Warmblood stallion, Corragio; and the 3’ championship at Ocala Winter Festival, Ocala Masters, Ocala Winter Finals, Aiken Charity II, and Aiken Fall Festival.
At the 2022 Platinum Performance/USHJA International Hunter Derby Championships in August, Tosh had the distinction of winning two of the top three spots: the champion title with Cannon Creek and third place with Ceil Wheeler’s 2013 warmblood gelding, Autograph.
This is Tosh’s second consecutive USEF National Equestrian of the Year award.
“One definition of ‘horseman’ is one whose skill with horses is exceptional,” said Tosh. “Although I do not consider myself exceptional, I’m fortunate to be surrounded by those who are: a group of people that includes my family, friends, vets, farriers, grooms, breeders, farm manager, and owners who I am lucky enough to call my friends. I learn something from these exceptional people every day. But we all owe the most to the horses. To be able to spend my life caring for these animals is a privilege.”
Tosh is the 2022 winner of the Emerson Burr Trophy, which is presented to an equestrian competing with any horse or pony breed shown in over-fences hunter classes.
2022 USEF Equestrians of Honor
Six equestrians were named Equestrians of Honor and recognized for their achievements in 2022 with the following trophies:
- William C. Steinkraus Trophy: Will Coleman (Eventing) and Adrienne Lyle (Dressage)
- Becky Grand Hart Trophy: Kate Shoemaker (Para Dressage)
- Norman K. Dunn Trophy: Janae Griffin (Friesian)
- Barbara Worth Oakford Trophy: James Hitt (Arabian)
- Vaughan Smith Trophy: Wendy Potts (Arabian)
- Bill Robinson Trophy: Jim B. Roberton II (Roadster)
- C.J. “June” Cronan Trophy: Matt Siemon (Arabian)
- Emerson Burr Trophy: Hunt Tosh (Hunter)
2022 USEF Lifetime Achievement Award – Hope Hand
Hope Hand began riding at age 10. She didn’t discover para dressage until she was an adult, when her daughter Amy learned about the sport as part of a school project on the Paralympics. That opened the door to Hand’s life work and lasting legacy in equestrian sport, as both an elite athlete and as a sport leader.
Hand was first alternate to the Atlanta 1996 Paralympic Team and competed at the British Invitational in 1997, earning gold, silver, and bronze. As a member of the U.S. Team competing at the 1999 World Dressage Championships, she won a bronze medal. Hand also competed at the 2000 Paralympics in Sydney, Australia, finishing fifth in the overall standings.
In addition to serving on the USEF board and on numerous committees, Hand also was president of the United States Para-Equestrian Association. She was instrumental in transitioning para dressage into an FEI and USEF sport, and she never missed an opportunity to educate, recruit, or mentor participants, from the grassroots to the elite level.
Hand’s tireless support for para dressage and its athletes contributed to the growth of the sport and the success of the U.S. program, including the U.S. Para Dressage Team’s outstanding results at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games.
Hope Hand, a true, lifelong friend of horses and equestrians, passed away on June 12, 2022, leaving a great legacy in para-equestrian sport.
2022 USEF Junior Equestrian of the Year – Skylar Wireman
Hunter, jumper, and equitation competitor Skylar Wireman had a successful year in 2022, highlighted by earning the USHJA Gladstone Cup Equitation Classic – West and the World Equestrian Center Premier Equitation Cup. She took home four titles at the Capital Challenge Horse Show: Overall Grand Junior Hunter 3’6” Champion, High Point Junior Hunter 16-17 Champion, Small Junior Hunter 16-17 Champion, and Best Junior 3’6” Rider Award. Wireman also was the Dover Saddlery/USEF Hunter Seat Medal Final Reserve Champion at the Pennsylvania National Horse Show.
In addition to her impressive results, Wireman demonstrates a strong work ethic, dedication, and willingness to help others. She takes excellent care of her horses and focuses on the enjoyment she gets out of competing rather than blue ribbons. Wireman is known for helping others in a variety of ways, such as loaning her horses to other competitors, cheering up someone having a bad day, and even helping change horse trailer tires when needed.
2022 USEF Pegasus Award Recipients
In addition to the above awards, the following annual award recipients were recognized at this year’s Pegasus Awards Dinner.
- Sallie Busch Wheeler Trophy for Distinguished Service to Equestrian Sport – Elisabeth Goth
- Ellen Scripps Davis Memorial Breeders’ Award – Eleanor Hamilton and Maryanna Haymon
- Kip Rosenthal Memorial High Score Equitation Award – Augusta Iwasaki
- Pegasus Medal of Honor – Jan Decker, Sally McClure Jackson, John R. “Doc” Steele,
- Richard E. McDevitt Award of Merit – William “Bill” Ellis, John King, Antonio “Pusito” Lopez, Richard Picken, Nancy Turrill
- USEF/EQUUS Foundation Humanitarian Award – Meris Bickford
- USEF Youth Sportsman’s Award – Ryder Richardson
- Walter B. Devereux Sportsmanship Award – Charlotte Skinner-Robson
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