[REAL VERSION] London 2012

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Full coverage on NBC through August 12

Olympic Profile: Steffen Peters, Best in Dressage

In Carmel Valley, one German immigrant's dream began 27 years ago

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Steffen Peters will head to the London 2012 Olympic Games this year to compete in Dressage. (Published Monday, Jul 2, 2012)

    For some Olympians the road to London is lined with dirt and gravel.

    For Steffen Peters, his life’s path led to a 20-acre ranch in Carmel Valley in northern San Diego County.

    Olympic Focus: Steffen Peters

    [DGO] Olympic Focus: Steffen Peters
    Steffen Peters will head to the London 2012 Olympic Games this year to compete in Dressage. (Published Monday, Jul 2, 2012)

    It’s a place where a German immigrant's dream started 27 years ago.

    "Riding my bicycle around, breaking young horses, living in a garage that I rented for $200 a month,” Peters recalls. “Mom and dad were very generous to send a horse with me over here that dad actually bought at 3 years old."

    Peters is one of America's best in Dressage - some call it horse dancing.

    Olympic TV Listings: When to Watch

    He's heading to London and letting us tag along as he enjoys one final day at home before the games.

    His life here is filled with everything he loves. First, his wife Michelle who he married eight years ago and the other lady in his life, a labradoodle, named Bettty.

    Unlike most Olympians, he also has a huge travelling support group.

    "With the equipment we have to bring, the grooms that have to come, and it's very obvious that it really takes a village to the Olympic Games," Peters said.

    And of course it takes great horses. There are more than 50 on his property. All are owned by other people, by the way.

    But two get special attention - Legolas and Ravel. The two horses get the penthouse suites. Unlike the other stalls, they're twice as big.

    “We don't tell the other horses and they glance sometimes over into the penthouse suite and say ‘Well, I guess I gotta do the Olympic Games one day too to get a stall like this,’" Peters said.

    Each stall is under video surveillance.

    "And I have a little app on my iPhone so I can watch those guys 24 hours anywhere in the world," he said.

    Outside - a newly-built VIP paddock - common horses need not apply.

    "They haven't even seen this,” he tells NBC 7. “So it's a little surprise for them when they come."

    "This is a very special grass, something they both enjoy, a little more protein in it, not too much sugar," he said.

    But above all else - it's here where Peters find solitude.

    A quiet spot dedicated to the memory of his championship horses now gone.

    A place built on American and Olympic dreams - a rare combination on full display if you know where to look.

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