This will be the 29-year-old’s first appearance as an Olympian after missing the 2016 Olympic Games due to her horse’s lingering injury. She now rides into Tokyo with a a 12-year-old Belgian Warmblood stallion named Don Juan van de Donkehoeve in a quest for gold.
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Jessica Springsteen shared the news on Instagram accompanied by a photo of her riding Don Juan during a competition. “Been dreaming of this since I can remember!,” she captioned the photo. “Endless gratitude for my team, friends and family for helping me make this a reality. We are Tokyo bound!!” She added, “There’s no horse in the world I’d rather be on this journey with, thank you Don! You’re my horse of a lifetime. Let’s go USA!”
Jessica Springsteen: “It All Really Happened Pretty Naturally”
During a 2021 interview with People, Jessica Springsteen revealed that her mother’s love for horses and a move to New Jersey set her on the path to be an Olympian. “I started riding when I was really little. My mum had always wanted to ride so when we moved to New Jersey she started taking lessons,” Springsteen, who has competed internationally for years, told the publication. “Our home is right across the road from one of the top junior training barns – and I went right into that when I was a teenager.” She continued, “I started competing and doing the jumpers, then I turned professional. It all really happened pretty naturally.”
The accomplished equestrian told CNN in 2019 that the “chemistry between” a rider and horse can change with each ride, but she stressed patience and “mutual give and take” to ensure the proper bond. “I think the key to getting the best out of your horse is just managing their schedule, making a good program in advance,” she explained. “You can pick shows that you think they’ll peak at.”
You thought we were going to make a “Born To Ride” joke, didn’t you? Be honest. Congratulations to Jessica Springsteen for the remarkable achievement and here’s to her bringing home the gold.