Colonel Russell`s riding activities include coaching of the Equestrian Team in North Italy in 1946 and 1947. He was the first American to win the Prize of Nations in Milano, Italy, Prize of Bologna, Italy, and was the leading rider of north Italy in 1947. In 1948, his assignment was to Fort Riley, Kansas, where he was an instructor of Advanced Horsemanship, and a member of the U.S. Equestrian Team. At this time his duty included the rewriting of the Manual of Horsemanship.
He placed second in the Olympic Trials for the 1948 Olympic Team. He won the individual Prize of Nations in Lucerne, Switzerland. He rode his horse, Blue Devil, named after the Division under which he served in Italy. He was jumper champion and leading rider of the Aachen Horse Show in Germany. He won the Prize of the Nations and the Puissance class in Dublin, Ireland. The same year he was the first American to win the Aga Khan Trophy and again he was the leading rider of the show. In London, White City, England, he won both the Edward, Prince of Wales, Moss Bros. Trophy and the Prize of the Nations. Representing the United States, he rode in the 1948 Olympic Games in London, England. In 1949, he won the Prize of Paris in Paris, France, the Prize of the Nations in Paris, France, and the Puissance class in Vichy, France.
At the end of 1951 he re-joined the U.S. Equestrian Team, and in 1952 won the Olympic Trials at Fort Riley, Kansas. From there he went to Monterrey, Mexico where he won the Prize of the Nations. The same year he won the West Point Challenge Trophy at Madison Square Garden, and he also participated at Harrisburg, Pennsylvania with the team. In 1952, he was assigned to Germany where he took part in horse shows in Hanover, Germany, and won the Prize of the Nations. From there, he travelled to Hamburg, Germany, and won the Hamburg Derby, where he was honoured as the first foreigner to ever receive an award and trophy for the best rider with best style and form in the show.
Riding his famous jumper, Democrat, he competed in the 1952 Olympic Games in Helsinki, Finland, as a member of the first civilian U.S. Equestrian Team squad, and won the Bronze Medal.
From 1953 to 1955, Colonel Russell was assigned as Headquarters Commandant of II Corps in Germany and his riding was limited to Germany and Austria. He won the Prize of the Nations in Vienna and Graz, Austria, and was the leading rider at Tübingen, Bad Godesberg and Wiesbaden, Germany.
John Russell Horses : Air Mail, Democrat
John Russell Competition Results24 - Olympics, Individual - 22/05/1952 - Democrat
21 - Olympics, Individual - 22/05/1948 - Air Mail