He always wore a bow-tie.
He always had big ideas.
He was going places, and he said he was taking us with him.
And he did.
Finn Caspersen was possibly the most influential person on the American horse sport scene in the late 20th century. And I am sure many blog readers have never even heard his name.
Consider this: He saved the US Equestrian Team from a tangle of lawsuits and takeover attempts that many said would be its demise. He dreamed of a national headquarters for the Team at Gladstone and made sure it happened. He figured out that the USA could beat the Europeans at their own games and set out to make that happen, too. He showed us that combined driving was a wild, fun ride and a sport worth embracing by bringing the world pairs championship to Gladstone.
All we had to do was hang on to his perfectly tailored shirt-tails.
And we did.
Look where we are now, on the eve of hosting the World Equestrian Games in America! Thank you, Finn Caspersen.
Former USET chairman and advocate for equestrian sports Finn Caspersen died on Monday. Please click here to read Nancy Jaffer's overview of his contributions to American horse sports.