Growing up in the shadow of one of America’s biggest music stars isn’t your cup of tea. Jessica Springsteen, daughter of rock star Bruce Springsteen, is doing well and competing in her first Olympics this year.
The 29-year-old rider, who was 4 years old, was selected by the US equestrian team and will compete in showjumping. In 2012, Springsteen was among the substitutes in London and failed to qualify for Rio in 2016.
It’s no surprise to see the daughter of “chief” and musician Patti Silva in the field. After all, Bruce Springsteen has a deep love of farm life and chose to leave Los Angeles in the 1990s to establish his ranch in his native New Jersey.
Jessica Springsteen revealed in a 2015 interview that she got her first pony at the age of six. She also went alone, moving from North America to the Netherlands in her early twenties. There, she trained with former Olympians to continue her learning and eventually fulfill her dream.
That strategy paid off when she won the US Gold Cup in 2014 and her first five-star competition in 2016, which wasn’t enough to secure a ticket to Brazil.
If Springsteen has a fairly well-known name, so is his horse in this contest.
The warm-blooded Belgian stallion Don Joan van de Donkhof was bred at the Springsteen ranch in the town of Colts Neck. The rider and her 12-year-old mare grew up together and had the best moments of their careers when they finished third at the Grand Prix de Rome in May.
In an interview, the Olympian said that her parents always encouraged her on her equestrian sport and that they often attended her competitions. They also organized a fundraiser to support the US team in 2016. $1.5 million was raised.
Springsteen graduated from Duke University. She has also participated in modeling and is the equestrian ambassador for the famous Gucci brand.
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