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" Junior superstars" article in COTH- is it just me or

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    #61
    Originally posted by snaffle635 View Post
    See article. Tori Colvin, age 13 (ok, so not 11) won her first grand prix. She beat Margie Engle. That's not achieving success????

    http://www.sidelinesnews.com/wp/week...es-it-all.html

    Why are some people so quick to discredit these kids? Just because they're young?
    Because they are jealous! and have to admit I am, too! These young ladies are living the dream of many young (and young at heart) girls. But at the same time, I can't hold it against them.

    They have something that many of us who are not sitting in their saddles don't have -- be it, yes, money (or at least access to people with money); talent; opportunity; gumption; dedication; the ability to ride under pressure; experience; and a host of other factors -- that put together, got them to where they are today.

    In my youth I did wish I had enough money to be able to create such an opportunity (heck I still wish I did!). Maybe the money would have bought me the experiences that would have molded me into a cool competitor like these ladies ... probably not. I think that I would have been found lacking somewhere.

    I am not a follower of these young ladies and their showing careers, but I can say that I marveled at some recent articles about Scott Stewart's success this spring/summer on horses that don't have a lot of show experience and how Tori Colvin is showing them in the Jr's while they haven't done much showing under Scott. While the horses sound like cool competitors, themselves, Tori must be doing something right if she is qualifying them for Devon, while succeeding in Derbies and winning GPs as a pre-teen. It definitely takes some mad skill to hold up to the pressure of competition and to be able to adjust your ride between different types of horse (ranging from ponies to GP horses) and different fence heights, especially at a young age. She sounds like she has maturity beyond her years when it comes to riding.

    And BAC beat me to it ... I was also surprised at how these girls do not do much else besides horse show, i.e. they are not going on lavish vacations or spending sprees at the mall, or whatever else other so-called well-heeled children do these days. They truly want to be where they are.

    So, while I am jealous, I tip my helmet to these ladies who are making the most of their opportunities and giving the rest of us something to aspire to (even for those of us that are much older!). Or be just a little bit jealous of

    Comment


      #62
      Originally posted by hntrjmprpro45 View Post
      Yes, that is absolutely something I love about riding. You definitely don't need a stellar jr career to be a top adult rider, although it may help.
      I believe it was Michael Matz who didn't start until he was 16. He's done OK for himself.

      What was the joke about him? He was the only kid in Pony Club old enough to drive himself to his D rally.

      Comment


        #63
        These kids are blessed with enormous talent, dedication, and the right opportunities. Many kids have the opportunity but don't make it to this level because they lack talent and/or dedication. Many kids have talent and dedication but don't make it to this level because they lack opportunities. Success on such a level certainly requires opportunities, but it requires talent and dedication too, and we shouldn't bash these kids for being lucky enough to have all three.
        Cowboy up.

        Comment


          #64
          Originally posted by BAC View Post
          Did anyone actually read Tori's responses? The kid has an absolute passion for the sport, her favorite horse show is "every horse show", she doesn't take vacations, she rides all day long every day. And she's only 13 years old.
          This is kind of embarrassing for me to admit, BUT I found the link to Tori's formspring account and read a few of her Q&A's. (I'm a huge fan of hers and think she's great for the sport).
          She's humble, LOVES what she does, loves the horses themselves, and works her tush off. No prima donna attitude there at all. Fabulous role model for all junior riders.

          Comment


            #65
            The last time I checked, our modern USET squads are made up of hardworking professionals who have sponsors, owners, and a whole team of people supporting them on a daily basis. The same could be said of our sport's international stars with names like Pessoa and Beerbaum.

            We cheer these professionals on and it's rather uncommon to hear people say, "oh sure, I could be Pessoa if I didn't have my accounting job or a schooling barn full of lesson kids..." Instead, we applaud their horsemanship, their skill and their ability to achieve what we only dream about.

            So exactly what is the difference between the professional adult and the superstar kid? Right, the kids also have to go to school, listen to their parents, deal with the challenges associated with simply growing up, don't make as much (if any) income and have to deal with a bunch of sideline snarkiness that negates their skill and hard work.

            Money or not, ours is a difficult sport that requires sensitivity, drive, dedication, vision and a supreme control of emotions to achieve at any level. There are no guarantees with horses - if there were, gold medals and Maclay final wins would be much easier to come by...

            I wish I'd had the chance to ride a grand prix at 13. Does it mean that if I'd had that chance I would have won, beating Margie Engle, Kent Farrington and others? Nope. But Tori Colvin did. And THAT, along with the other juniors' achievements highlight in the article (that I did read), is rather impressive.
            "Whether you think you can or think you can't, you are right." -Henry Ford

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              #66
              Originally posted by magnolia73 View Post
              I get SO SICK of adults being mean about kids who won the family lottery. What would make you happy? If they took a vow of poverty? The young rider at my barn with the fancy junior horse appparently did a missionary trip to Africa.... can we please not classify her as a spoiled brat? Or maybe the gal at my barn who shows junior jumpers who pretty much manages her own barn and horses- can we give her the benefit of the doubt that she rides because she loves it? Or the kid making up a project pony to fund her next purchase- can we give her credit for being a good rider?

              Thanks.
              Excellent post
              .

              Comment


                #67
                There's a big difference between "spoiled" and "fortunate". I enjoyed the article. I've seen all of these kids in action. They've earned their kudos.
                http://patchworkfarmga.com

                Comment


                  #68
                  Originally posted by allicolls Aefvue Farms Deep South View Post
                  These kids are blessed with enormous talent, dedication, and the right opportunities. Many kids have the opportunity but don't make it to this level because they lack talent and/or dedication. Many kids have talent and dedication but don't make it to this level because they lack opportunities. Success on such a level certainly requires opportunities, but it requires talent and dedication too, and we shouldn't bash these kids for being lucky enough to have all three.
                  Yes, this was basically the point I was making. There hasn't been much kid bashing on this thread. On the contrary, most posters seem very positive toward the riders profiled in the articles. It's not bashing to acknowledge that these young riders have received opportunities that most kids don't get.

                  Comment


                    #69
                    Money, talent, dedication, desire, it takes all of this and more to accomplish what the juniors in the article have accomplished. And while we sit here and debate how they got where they are , they are out there racking up more accomplishments!!! Seems to me they have a pretty good handle on their lives!!!
                    Kudos to all three of them, I love the fact that my 7 yr old has them as role models!!!!

                    Comment


                      #70
                      Originally posted by Jsalem View Post
                      There's a big difference between "spoiled" and "fortunate". I enjoyed the article. I've seen all of these kids in action. They've earned their kudos.
                      Ditto! PS. these kids are no different than anyone else.
                      http://community.webshots.com/user/summitspringsfarm

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                        #71
                        I feel like chiming in.

                        It is easy to see why someone may be jealous of these kids, heck, I am. Someone posted about Tori riding 20 - 25 horses a day a WEF. ...

                        That makes me drool. I am a little older than Tori too.

                        I ride as many as I can, and on a good day that is 10 horses - sometimes multiple times. I work at the shows and show a couple, I warm up all the horses for the head pro, get on the horses for a morning hack, and a tune up before the clients get on, and ride the greenies when the show is over. I work really hard and I certainly didn't have a HUGE financial backing to get me where I am. Even after long days I am still always hungry for more rides.

                        I think what has perhaps helped these kids is not only their talent and adult support but people LOCATION LOCATION LOCATION. It's possible that if I did not grow up in an area where there is maybe 10 AA rated shows in a 500 mile radius I could have been even more successful even earlier. BUT such is life and someday I will get the opportunity to move East and try my hand there.

                        I am sure that every where I go there is always someone who will ride better, have more money, have more luck, or have better backing than I. And I can still be jealous of these girls and all their horses but poo, I still really enjoy what i'm doing. But I've worked da*m hard for it!!!!

                        The only thing that may have made the original OP a little "unsettled" is I think in the same article one of the girls mentioned something ALONG THE LINES OF NOT A DIRECT QUOTE that she really didn't look forward to showing at Devon because she had never had much luck in all her "years" of attending. That made me chuckled. I would like ask her if she would take my place on the west coast for that week and I'll take her rides for Devon. (I know it doesn't work that way...)

                        Comment


                          #72
                          Originally posted by allicolls Aefvue Farms Deep South View Post
                          These kids are blessed with enormous talent, dedication, and the right opportunities. Many kids have the opportunity but don't make it to this level because they lack talent and/or dedication. Many kids have talent and dedication but don't make it to this level because they lack opportunities. Success on such a level certainly requires opportunities, but it requires talent and dedication too, and we shouldn't bash these kids for being lucky enough to have all three.
                          Couldn't have said it better myself. It's not just piles of cash (or sufficient cash) but talent and luck that make someone a success. It takes all the right combination. These juniors have it. Good for them.

                          I feel such irony in regards to this thread. Remember "Horsepower?" The (pretty inarguable) "star" of that show was a junior who was VERY wealthy (but also talented, hardworking, and grounded) and I recall seeing praise bordering on obsession with her. The juniors interviewed for the article thta kicked off this thread are not dissimilar, and several of them come from far less affluance. Why the love for her and all the hating on them?
                          ~Veronica
                          "The Son Dee Times" "Sustained" "Somerset" "Franklin Square"
                          http://photobucket.com/albums/y192/vxf111/

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                            #73
                            Originally posted by Jsalem View Post
                            There's a big difference between "spoiled" and "fortunate". I enjoyed the article. I've seen all of these kids in action. They've earned their kudos.
                            I have to agree with this statement. I read the article when I got my copy in the mail and I didn't have one negative thought about those girls. We all share a love of horses here but its a huge sacrifice to make it your absolute life when you're a kid. They work so very hard to be where they are. That kind of dedication says a lot about their character. You don't think Tori Colvin, at 13, ever woke up and would rather have gone to the beach with her friends or watched a movie but instead went out and rode 20 ponies? I get so sick of hearing adults call kids that are fortunate, spoiled. The kids at my barn work their butts off in the ring and in school. They are well mannered and kind and know everything if not more about horsemanship and sportsmanship than many of the adults I ride with. Yeah, they are very very fortunate to have parents who can pay high 5 figures for a horse and the monthly costs associated with them but don't think for a second it's lost on any of my barn kids.

                            We are supposed to be role models. What are we showing the next generation if we act like jealous babies towards them because they have nicer horses than most of us can afford?

                            Comment


                              #74
                              I read the article and honestly, it made me smile. The kids all seemed very normal, yet dedicated and successful in one aspect of their lives that most kids their age aren't (for whatever reason). I finished reading the article and thought, "Wow, kudos to those kids for their focus and talent and kudos to their parents for providing their kids this opportunity while still raising them in a way that they seem to be caring, intelligent, and grateful.

                              I wonder more about the people on this board who take time out of their days to start threads like this and those who take time out of their days to keep these things going. But then I've never been the jealous type.

                              Comment


                                #75
                                "Spoiled brats" would not have lasted long enough to attain the levels of success these girls have.

                                "Spoiled brats" don't generally develop much of a work ethic; they're raised to think they are entitled to the best horses and the wins because they are oh so special thanks to the fact that their parents have money and never say "no". When they aren't handed what they think ought to be theirs, "spoiled brats" quit and go dabble in whatever new hobby mom & dad will pay for.

                                I don't think the term applies to Tori, Reed, or Taylor Ann at all.

                                Comment


                                  #76
                                  Originally posted by MIKES MCS View Post
                                  11 Year olds do not ACHIEVE success, success is bought for them, perhaps that is where the resentment comes from, You know from those adults who have scrimped, saved, starved, spent 18 hour days in the barn, rode everything under the sun and moon, made the SUCCESFUL transition from ponies to say at least a horse. Ponies are not exactly a sport where actual talent and skill is needed to win. Other wise why would so many pay so much for those tiny little packers who can take a Joke so gracefully. Now if you put that same 11 year old in the jumper ring and it can clock around on a undrugged, unbroken, athletic horse, I'll agree that's success.
                                  I'm writing this before reading the entire thread, but seriously? You dont think that an 11 yr old can achieve success ever? What about those piano players, chess players, gymnasts, ice skaters, or another sport/activity where a child is above and beyond the rest b/c of natural talent that was lucky enough to get caught and then nurtured by a professional?? You dont think this is possible in the horse world, b/c I do. Anything is. Our sport is like any other and natural talent shines when its there.

                                  And not all of those ponies are little packers that anyone can get on. I know thats the overall goal, but most arent born that way they are trained that way. So they have to start somewhere with a kid who can get the miles on them that they need to become that packer who can take a joke.
                                  "to each his own..."

                                  Comment


                                    #77
                                    Originally posted by tja789 View Post
                                    Perhaps threads about junior riding superstars bring claws out because many posters seem eager to heap praise upon these children because of their "drive and talent". But drive and talent are rather common. For every little riding superstar on the AA circuit, there are a 1000 girls who have tons of riding talent and work their butts off to ride at all. They would give anything for the opportunities the little riding stars are given. The achievements of children in the horse show world are entirely dependent on a team of adults making it happen for the kid. This can mean having very wealthy parents or parents who are horse professionals or parents who otherwise make sure the kid is always where they need to be to ensure success at horse shows. Adults make things happen for kids in expensive sports like riding. Granted the kids who become stars have sufficient drive and talent to take advantage of the opportunity they are offered. But it's the opportunity that's rare and special, not the kids themselves.
                                    This! Well said.

                                    Comment


                                      #78
                                      Personally, I think it is an absolutely ludicrous statement to think that those three girls don't have a level of talent above your regular junior. Absolutely ludicrous. And this is coming from someone who is on the circuit and has watched them, along with their competition, regularly.

                                      And for those arguing about money, two of those three girls come from families that I wouldn't say have an inordinate amount of money. Do they have access, thanks to talent, a work ethic and probably some luck, to those with the money and the horses? Sure. But why is that a problem?

                                      Comment


                                        #79
                                        If these amazing top juniors aren't worth our admiration, then what's the point?

                                        My DD has as much dedication and work ethic as the superstars in this article. As parents we have sacrificed everything possible, and she has sacrificed family holidays, vacations, friends, spending money, etc. etc. etc. for years as a working student with good professionals who have also sacrificed to provide opportunities for DD to ride. She has progressed slowly but steadily. Perhaps in another 5-10 years she'll find herself in the grand prix ring, at least that's her goal. (She's 21 now.)

                                        The bottom line is that talent, sacrifice, courage, blood, sweat and tears are what it takes to succeed at the highest levels. While money and connections may radically speed up the process, this shouldn't diminish the accomplishment of winning a grand prix. Instead of griping, we should admire these successful junior riders and be awed. They reflect what is possible when all the stars are in perfect alignment.

                                        Comment


                                          #80
                                          Originally posted by tja789 View Post
                                          Perhaps threads about junior riding superstars bring claws out because many posters seem eager to heap praise upon these children because of their "drive and talent". But drive and talent are rather common. For every little riding superstar on the AA circuit, there are a 1000 girls who have tons of riding talent and work their butts off to ride at all. They would give anything for the opportunities the little riding stars are given. The achievements of children in the horse show world are entirely dependent on a team of adults making it happen for the kid. This can mean having very wealthy parents or parents who are horse professionals or parents who otherwise make sure the kid is always where they need to be to ensure success at horse shows. Adults make things happen for kids in expensive sports like riding. Granted the kids who become stars have sufficient drive and talent to take advantage of the opportunity they are offered. But it's the opportunity that's rare and special, not the kids themselves.

                                          While there's no reason to dislike or insult little horse show stars, excessive praise and admiration don't seem warranted either. They're not necessarily more talented or dedicated than most other aspiring young riders, just vastly better supported.
                                          This. I am surprised it took this long for someone to point this out. The key word is: opportunity. The opportunity to learn from good people and on good horses. The opportunity to jump more jumps and show in more classes and take more lessons and in general get more practice, which is made possible by having multiple horses and therefore money. Also, having their rate of improvement and advancement up the levels be totally dependent on themselves, not on the capabilities of the horse they have. In other words, when they are ready to move up, the appropriate horses are provided, so they are not held back because they lack capable horses for the higher level. They are given every possible chance to succeed.

                                          The riders who don't have money but end up riding for someone well-connected? Yes, they are talented but they also simply got lucky. They were in the right place at the right time and were smart enough to take advantage of the opportunity offered and skilled enough to not lose it. There are probably thousands of young riders who are just as talented, smart, and determined, but they just weren't lucky enough to be one of the few who were offered one of those incredible opportunities.

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