In 2002, Hough and Clasiko were members of the U.S. team which won the first outdoor Samsung Nations' Cup held in the United States during the Cosequin Winter Equestrian Festival. She then repeated her 2001 National Horse Show Grand Prix win, winning it this time on Clasiko.
In 2003, Hough was one of two riders who were subjectively chosen for the show jumping team representing the United States at the 2003 Pan American Games in Santo Domingo, the Dominican Republic. This marked the first time since 1990 that any places on a U.S. show jumping team competing at a continental or world championship or Olympic Games went to riders chosen subjectively.
Olympic veteran Laura Kraut's performance as part of the U.S. Team in the 2006 Samsung Super League tour led the U.S. to a second place in the Nations Cup in Rome, Italy, aboard Miss Independent. Kraut also spent much of the 2005 summer representing the United States in the competitive Samsung Super League series in Europe.
Kraut helped the U.S. secure wins in Aachen, Germany, and LaBaule, France, and second place in Rome, Italy, and in Hickstead, England, riding both Anthem and Miss Independent. Also in 2005, Kraut had a first-place finish at the $75,000 Cosequin Florida Open riding Miss Independent. Going into her seventh World Cup Final, Kraut ranked second in the East Coast League. In 2004, Kraut was a member of the second place team in the $50,000 Samsung Nations Cup in Florida, and helped the United States secure a fourth-place overall finish in the Samsung Super League. Kraut rode Miss Independent in the 2006 World Equestrian Games to assist the United States in securing the team silver.
In 2003, Kraut was the top-placed American at the World Cup Final, where she tied for the fifth position out of 41 starting horse-and-rider combinations. In 2002, she was a member of the U.S. Team which won the first outdoor Nations Cup held in the United States; and at the Samsung Nations Cup Series, she was named leading rider after tying for first place on Liberty in the individual competition.
Kraut was a U.S. team alternate at the 2002 World Equestrian Games in Spain, and in the 2000-2001 competition season she was honored as reserve champion American Grand Prix Association Rider of the Year. Kraut was also a member of the U.S. show jumping team at the 2000 Sydney Olympics.
Kraut makes her home in Wellington, Fla., and enjoys spending time with her young son, Bobby.
Todd Minikus was a recipient of a U.S. Equestrian Team (USET) grant to represent the U.S. on a 1997 European tour. He is a frequent visitor to the winner's circle. Minikus and Ravel won the $100,000 Budweiser American Invitational in Tampa, Fla., in April 1997.
Minikus began showing at the grand prix level in 1985. He achieved great success with his grey Canadian Thoroughbred, Thrilling. Minikus rode Thrilling to four grand prix wins in 1989 and then took the show jumping world by storm in 1990 with an unprecedented sweep of all open jumper classes at the Washington International Horse Show, including the President's Cup. His record-setting performance earned him Washington's Ennis Jenkins Award as Leading Rider (he was both Leading Gentleman and Leading National Rider) to go with that year's Midwest Grand Prix Rider of the Year award. Thrilling also earned the honors of the Midwest Horse of the Year.
In addition to the 1997 European tour, Minikus represented the U.S. in the 1991, 1995 and 1997 World Cup Finals, and on a 1996 USET European Developing Rider tour.
He had five Grand Prix wins in 1998 and six more in 1999. He rode Oh Star to a 4th place finish in the $250,000 American Grand Prix Association Championship and tied for 6th at the Budweiser World Cup Final in April, 2000. His 5th place finish at the U.S. Olympic Selection Trials earned him the spot as the Alternate for the USET 2000 Olympic Games Show Jumping squad in Sydney, Australia.
His 2001 wins included the $50,000 Rio Vista Grand Prix at HITS Culpeper II, the $100,000 Cosequin Grand Prix at HITS Catskills IV, and the $100,000 Rolex/USET Show Jumping Championship at the Bayer/USET Festival of Champions at the US Equestrian Team Olympic Training Center in Gladstone, N.J. Following his win aboard Oh Star in the $175,000 Cargill Grand Prix of the United States held at the Rancho Mission Viejo Riding Park in San Juan Capistrano, Calif., Minikus was named USET Athlete of the Month for July. In 2001, Minikus was named USA Equestrian Horseman of the Year and was awarded the William C. Steinkraus Equestrian of Honor Trophy.