because they have to be able to adjust and be really good in three different phases, not just concentrate on one. It’s a bit like a swimmer who can medal in different strokes.”
Dutton, 53, was Team USA’s oldest Olympian. He debuted at the Atlanta Games in 1996 and has competed in all six Summer Olympics since – representing Australia in the first three and the U. S. in 2008, 2012 and 2016.
Dutton won a pair of team gold medals for Australia. The bronze he won for the U. S. was his first individual medal. Dutton has
won two team gold medals and an individual silver representing the U.S. in two Pan American Games.
Dutton owns a farm and training facility in West Grove, Pa., about 30 minutes from Fair Hill. He said he has 15- 20 horses that he competes with, which is why he left Brazil so shortly after his competition. Dutton committed
nearly all of his time to preparing Mighty Nice for the Olympics.
“In some ways, all my other horses were put on the back seat. I’ve got other competitions that they’re all aiming for, so I had to get back and get them prepared. I’d always planned to come straight back,” he said. “It takes a long time to get a horse to the absolute highest level, so you
have to start them off as younger horses to introduce them to the sport and every year they get a little better. It’s not just a case of getting any horse and taking them to the Olympics, it takes four, five or six years of training to get to that level.”
Follow Sean Grogan on Twitter: @ Sean_ CecilWhig