Being the daughter of a living rock legend has its perks. One of them is certainly not an easy entry into the Olympic riding team. This quickly became apparent to Jessica Springsteen, first in 2012 when she was chosen to replace the athletes who would compete in the London Olympics.
Four years later, his intentions to take part in the Games were again dashed, this time in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Five years later, Tokyo would be the right choice. She was not only one of the chosen ones, but at the age of 29 was also able to win her first medal, silver, in the young horse jumping test.
It was not an easy journey. Before the success, Springsteen took part in the individual competition, but failed in the final. The festivities have been canceled for the finals on Saturday, August 7th.
Thousands of kilometers away was a proud boss, as revealed by her daughter, who immediately made a video call with her parents after the conquest. “They all screamed, I think no one heard anything,” he told CNN.
The truth is that Bruce and Patti Scialfa, the parents, had a lot of responsibility in Jessica’s path. The Los Angeles couple, who at the time had three children – Evan, the eldest and Sam, the youngest – decided to seek refuge in New Jersey and protect their childhoods as best they could.
On their farm in Colts Neck, they decided to settle down. And there, always among dozens of horses, Jessica’s passion was born. It started, of course, with the ponies roaming the fields at Stone Hill Farm.
He had his first pony when he was just six years old. “All little girls love ponies. I was totally obsessed with mine, ”she revealed in an interview, although she admitted that it was a complicated animal to master. “I threw myself to the ground whenever I could, I couldn’t walk on it.”
Mother also helped with this thing about the horse. “She always wanted me to ride a horse when I was younger. And when we moved from California to New Jersey, she started taking classes too. “
He did this right next to Beacon Hill, a stable with a reputation for training knights. There they learned the techniques that would make them one of the greatest talents in their country.
Jessica competes in Tokyo
The move planned by the parents was absolutely crucial, he reveals. “Growing up in New Jersey allowed us to have a normal childhood. I think my parents were very wise to raise us here, ”she says. “It was nice to be focused and to work hard as a kid. I think I’ve also gained a lot of self-confidence through sport. “
Apparently Springsteen and Scialfa are just as excited about Jessica’s passion for horse riding as they were on day one. “They love exercise too,” he notes. “They have given me a lot of support and have always been very passionate about riding, that’s a good thing I can share with them.”
Despite the talent, things didn’t always go well. And when that happened, he knew that despite his father’s busy schedule, he could count on his presence in the stands. “When I was younger, they went with me to a lot of competitions, which was good because I didn’t know a lot of people. Even today they come to me whenever they can. “
Turning riding into a profession wasn’t always planned. He even went to Duke University but quickly realized that his future wasn’t there. “This is the moment when you have to decide whether to try both or stop riding a horse and focus on learning. And quitting riding was never an option for me, although I wanted to try something at school. “
When she traveled to Europe for a competition the first summer of her vacation, she found that nothing made her happier. At some point he breaks off his studies and devotes himself to sports. “That’s when I decided that I realized that this was really what I wanted to do.” This despite the fact that years later he had served as the equestrian ambassador for Gucci.
“What I love most about this sport is the relationship you have with horses,” he notes. “There is no other sport like that. That appealed to me from an early age and I still love that: the harmony with the horse. And of course I think it’s cool that men and women can compete against each other in a sport. “
The father is the greatest supporter of your career
The passion has been put to the test over the past decade, where the goal of reaching the Olympics often seemed a short step away but was never realized. When the trip to Tokyo was officially announced, Bruce, Patti and Jessica were thrilled.
“You were so happy. They supported me since childhood in this dream that I had since childhood, they also fell in love with horse riding. I feel like we lived this together, so they were very happy, ”he recalled at the time.
Inevitably, even though she was only the third best American rider in the national rankings, all attention was turned to Springsteen – who was even entitled to on-site support from her father’s fan club. She’s not the only celebrity kid investing in horse riding, however. This is a list bringing together, for example, Princess Ana of England, who participated in the 1976 Games and repeated her daughter’s performance in 2012.
The daughter of former New York President Michael Bloomberg is also an elite knight in the United States. And Nayel Nassar, Bill Gates’ son-in-law, also competed in Tokyo, in a sport that does not discriminate, but seems made for the richest and most famous.