Photos by Douglas Lees

On Friday, Jan. 20, Randy Rouse received the F. Ambrose Clark Award during the annual meeting of the National Steeplechase Association (NSA) Race Chairmen at the National Sporting Library & Museum. This is the association’s highest honor and is given to those who have devoted themselves to the improvement and promotion of American steeplechasing. Rouse, who recently celebrated his 100th birthday, was presented the award in recognition of a lifetime of achievement.

Rouse was most active on the racing scene during the 1960s, ‘70s and ‘80s, but has devoted his entire life to equestrian sport and was once quoted as saying he “will never retire.” Among his many accomplishments, Rouse was a former president of the NSA and was a recipient of the Casanova Cup Trophy and the National Sporting Library and Museum Cup, 
among many others.

Rouse is also credited with introducing the national fence in 1973. This innovation replaced natural fences and greatly reduced the cost of steeplechase events. Many say that this single contribution saved the sport.

Foreground (left to right): NSA President Guv Torsilieri, Michele Rouse, Randy Rouse and Manor Race Committee Chairman H. Turnev McKnight.

Foreground (left to right): NSA President Guv Torsilieri, Michele Rouse, Randy Rouse and Manor Race Committee Chairman H. Turnev McKnight.

Michele and Randy Rouse following the presentation of the F. Ambrose Clark Award.

Michele and Randy Rouse following the presentation of the F. Ambrose Clark Award.

Randy Rouse on Cinzano in the February snow at the Casanova Point to Point, about 1990.

Randy Rouse on Cinzano in the February snow at the Casanova Point to Point, about 1990.

Rouse awards the first steeplechase Eclipse Award to Stephen C. Clark, owner of Shadowbrook, in 1971.

Rouse awards the first steeplechase Eclipse Award to Stephen C. Clark, owner of Shadowbrook, in 1971.

Rouse presents the F. Ambrose Clark Award to Jerry Fishback in 1972.

Rouse presents the F. Ambrose Clark Award to Jerry Fishback in 1972.

Rouse won 10 races on Cinzano in the 1980s, including Casanova, pictured here.

Rouse won 10 races on Cinzano in the 1980s, including Casanova, pictured here.

The F. Ambrose Clark Award that was presented to Rouse.

The F. Ambrose Clark Award that was presented to Rouse.