Ann Romney 'excited' her horse Olympic-bound
June 18th, 2012
11:45 AM ET
11 years ago

Ann Romney 'excited' her horse Olympic-bound

(CNN) – Ann Romney will not be riding her dressage horse Rafalca at this summer's London Olympics, but she said Monday she was still proud to represent the United States in the global competition.

"I am so excited honestly to be able to represent the United States," Romney said in a radio interview with WJR's Frank Beckmann. "I have a horse that is going to be fighting for gold in London and I am very excited about that. Wow! It has been a dream of mine for a long, long time, ever since I was a little girl."

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Romney said she did ride Rafalca herself, but the level of competition in London was beyond her abilities.

"I do ride this horse, but not in competition," Romney, the wife of presumptive GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney, said Monday. "People say, 'Well you can ride at that level,' and I say, "Well…" It's like being the country club pro in one place, and then going to Wimbledon. You don't understand how professional these riders are that are riding at this level. It's quite competitive."

Rafalca earned a spot on the U.S. Equestrian Team on Saturday in the sport of dressage. The horse placed third in the Olympic Grand Prix Special Test, held Saturday in Gladstone, New Jersey. Rafalca scored an overall 73.169%, placing behind competitors Calecto V and Legolas, and ahead of nine others.

In her interview Monday, Romney also spoke about life on the campaign trail, saying she didn't mind the hoards of hecklers that have followed her husband's six-state, five day bus tour.

"It is what we love about America so I don't mind them," Romney said. "You know, they were shouting us down, trying to shout us down yesterday and I don't mind it. It is a great contrast about why we love this country and how hard people have to work to get to accomplish their dreams."

Asked if, as president, Mitt Romney and his family would take as many vacations as President Barack Obama, Romney responded with a laugh.

"I doubt that," she said. "Our vacations and our happiness comes from being with our children and our grandchildren."

Vacations, Romney explained, would likely take place at the family's own homes.

"We have our own places that we do that, and I'm assuming that we'll be doing the same," Romney said.

The Romney's own vacation homes in San Diego and on Lake Winnipesaukee in New Hampshire.

Also see:

Golfer-in-chief hits 100th round as president

Lawmakers mum on health care contingency plans

Romney sees bright side of rain-soaked campaign event

Filed under: 2012 • Ann Romney
soundoff (127 Responses)
  1. They ought to change from the elephant to the hippo...

    Don't let MITT ship it over there. He'd probably strap it to a wing!

    June 18, 2012 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  2. Karm99

    Nothing exemplifies better the elitism of the Romney Family.

    Is there anything wrong with dressage, no, but there is something wrong with putting a person in the white house who spends money and time on something like this.

    It is impossible for this type person to relate to the average middle class American. Their life experiences do not allow this to be true. And living vicariously though owning an Olympic horse makes this crystal clear.

    To me this is like owning a 400ft yacht, there is nothing to admire in this. However, I would admire someone who owned a 40 ft fishing boat and liked to fish, or a 65foot sailing boat and liked to race it themselves.

    Owning an Olympic horse is nothing more than Romney bling.

    June 18, 2012 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  3. He won't say

    "Oh, I love hecklers, I love my horse, I doubt we would take vacations, I think everyone should have a horse... I think the meds I am taking help me relax... what do you think, do you think I seem to be rambling on... do you think I should take another pill? Ohhh, yeah that feels better... now I feel like I am back on the Cayman Island hiding our money before vacationing on our private island."

    June 18, 2012 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  4. EatRunDive

    This is a bit confusing. Horses are selected for the Olympic team without a paired rider?

    June 18, 2012 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  5. cali girl

    The difference between Robmey and the Kennedys:
    The Kennedys served in the military and during war times. John had medical issues but went forth anyway.
    Robmey's entire family has not served one day. Robmey ducked and dodged his way in France.
    The Kennedys had respect of all America, and every family member served in politics. Teddy who last passed left a legacy of giving to Americans.
    So that is the difference.

    June 18, 2012 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  6. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    What does a horse have to do with the economy, jobs, the middle class, the poor, healthcare, social security, national security, Hispanics, etc.?

    June 18, 2012 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  7. littletingod

    Yet another check mark about how different the Romney's are from the "average" American they want to rule.

    June 18, 2012 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  8. Tree


    Well Rudy to answer your question, many little girls like First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy shared the dreams with Ann Romney. Mrs. Kennedy herself used to compete in horse shows and used to be a fearless horsewoman. Mrs. Kennedy kept her horses in Virginia, was always riding while in the White House and used to go fox-hunting. I suggest you guys also criticize Mrs. Kennedy if you're going to criticize Mrs. Romney.

    We not talking about the Kennedy's we are talking about Romey's. So your point does not have merit. You are looking back and we are looking forward.

    June 18, 2012 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  9. Susan

    Oh, so THIS is her "job" outside the home. Tough life, Annie. Why even try to pretend you're one of us???

    June 18, 2012 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  10. anagram_kid

    You need to let the Kennedy bit go. The issue at hand is the Romney’s claim to understand the middle class and their struggles with comments about pink slips and such. If you cannot defend that position you are wasting time with your posts. Distractions are not valid arguments.

    June 18, 2012 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  11. cali girl

    A lot of little grils dream of Prince Charming, the castle and all that comes with it.
    There are lots of horses that are used for work, and don't have dress up parties, and champagne at the country club.
    Our family had three horses as a kid, but they had a job. 500 head of cattle needed to be seperated, the horses did that work.

    June 18, 2012 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  12. Virginia

    I can't believe a lot of the hateful comments on here. Ann Romney is a lovely lady who has fought breast cancer and is fighting and living with Multiple Sclerosis (MS). She rides horses now primarily as therapy for her MS. She successfully raised a family of 5 sons, which definitely was work, regardless of whatever household help she may have had. And all accounts show she was a hands-on mother, not one to pass her child-rearing responsibilities on nannies. When did some Americans becomes so bitter and divided over politics that they resort to the types of comments shown here? How about showing some respect for our Presidents and First Ladies, or prospective Presidents and First Ladies, whether Republican or Democrat? You can disagree with Mitt Romney's policies without viciously attacking him or his family. And remember that all Presidents are in the so-called elite 1%, including President Obama. None of them live the life of the average American! The great thing about this country is that no matter where you come from or the circumstances of your birth, there is the OPPORTUNITY to reach the 1% if you desire. Stop hating and let's get back to some semblance of civility in our public discourse.

    June 18, 2012 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  13. ladyfon

    It doesn't Claudia. It is just the left-wing news media trying to tarnish Romney's image. We American's are no longer supposed to strive to be successful.

    June 18, 2012 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  14. Thomas

    Ann Romney says women are worried about jobs and the debt issues .

    Only a woman such as Ann Romney can relate best to the struggles of other women.

    Romney / Rafalca

    Please don't tell me they have a Horse Elevator !

    June 18, 2012 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  15. Donkey Party

    Myviews – Stop with the false equivalence, there isn't any. The Kennedy's didn't ride horses in the Olympics or flaunt their wealth.

    Ladyfon – American's DO respect success, but we don't respect it when it was literally handed to someone (Romney) on a silver platter. Like his wife, he's never had to do an honest day of work in his pampered life.

    June 18, 2012 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  16. escher7

    Not much left to say. The amazing thing is that they just don't get that folks out of work, sweating to pay the bills etc just do not give a damn about horses. I really believe that Romney thinks everyone has two Cadillacs and a couple of vacation homes. I don't begrudge the man his lifestyle if he earned it, but to him the Presidency is just another thing for a rich guy to do. Where is the fervor to help America? Common republicans, even if you hate Obama, this guy is no alternative.

    June 18, 2012 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  17. The Film Professor

    Gee, how nice for you, Ann. All of us out here in middle class suburbia can really relate to your life long dream to have a horse in the Olympics. Does your husband and do your sons play polo perhaps? Do you get to drink Chateau Lafitte after your dressage exercises? Tally Ho!

    June 18, 2012 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  18. Chris of Oregon

    For all those that says negative about Ms. Romney - Look, this is America and we should be glad that her husband's family had the opportunity to make money and be wealthy. I doubt anyone HATES the CHANCE TO BE WEALTHY. I do love and dream to be at the level of riches like the Romney's. Don't you?? So, blessed are the Romney's because they've worked hard and received what they've sown. As Bill Gates said, "IT IS NOT YOUR FAULT THAT YOU ARE BORN POOR. RATHER, IT IS YOUR FAULT WHEN YOU DIE POOR". Stop hating each other. I am not rich, but, I work hard for a living and I admire the Romney's. I wish my children and their children will be like the Romney's - not whiners.

    June 18, 2012 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  19. California Gary

    So while the rest of us "Joe 6-Packs" will be watching the American boxing team, Mitt will be watching the American "dressage" team? A real man of the people.......

    June 18, 2012 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  20. The Truth Hurts the Romney's?

    The poster "ladyfon" says that the left-wing news media is trying to tarnish Romney's image. Shame on CNN for reporting that the Romney's have a horse going to the Olympics. CNN should know that the truth is tarnishing Romney's image and stop actually reporting on it.

    If this upsets you, ladyfon, strap yourself in. Soon, I am sure that CNN will be reporting about the Romney's money in Switzerland and the Cayman Islands. This little horsey story will probably seem pretty tame to you by then.

    June 18, 2012 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  21. B.

    Kind of like watching the Queen and her Diamond Jubilee..

    Nauseous- They live in a different universe.

    June 18, 2012 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  22. Myviewis

    You need to let the Kennedy bit go. The issue at hand is the Romney’s claim to understand the middle class and their struggles with comments about pink slips and such. If you cannot defend that position you are wasting time with your posts. Distractions are not valid arguments.
    You did read this report that is about Ann Romney and her horse and everyone else writing comments has been about her horse and wealth? So I think that the Kennedys are a perfect reminder that Democrats do have wealth, richness, maids, drivers and horses and your criticizm of the Romneys doesn't hold water.

    June 18, 2012 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  23. Jeff in Virginia

    I'm glad that Mrs. Romney gets such enjoyment out of her tax-payer subsidized dancing horse. Yep- she took a $77,000 tax write-off for her dancing horse. It's a shame that the article here is missing that critical piece of information.

    June 18, 2012 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  24. bev

    I had to give up my horses due to the economy & not being able to afford to have a place to keep them or feed them. Horses are beautiful & riding is peaceful. Bet miss anne has never cleaned stalls any day, much less everyday for the love of these animals. But since she doesn't consider "herself rich" according to her own words–she might try being "totally" responsible for the care of them, since she knows after all according to her she knows all about raising her kids by herself.

    June 18, 2012 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  25. The Real World


    You stated "It is just the left-wing news media trying to tarnish Romney's image. We American's are no longer supposed to strive to be successful"

    America does not have a problem with success and wealth, it's the American Dream. However, what is not respected is ill-gotten gains acquired by illicit or improper means. For example, running companies into the ground, firing everyone, and making off with all the profits.

    June 18, 2012 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
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