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

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  • Sunnyhorse
    replied
    As someone who isn't naturally gifted at this sport and is worried that she's hit her limits, will never get any better, and is not good enough for her wonderful horse, I enjoyed the article, although I would be lying if I said that reading it wasn't a bittersweet experience. I tip my hat to the girls for taking what they got naturally and working so hard to develop their skills to the absolute fullest.

    Leave a comment:


  • Gnalli
    replied
    Originally posted by magnolia73 View Post
    Look the Chronicle is a magazine that caters to the horseshow world...... so the kids won at that game....



    I'd call it a Disney movie if the kid lived and won, and a local show if the kid merely survived.

    At 13, the child did a Grand Prix. At 37, I can barely jump a crossrail course. I'm impressed. She rode 11 ponies, that is impressive. She made up some ponies.

    Does she deserve the cover of Life Magazine or Sports Illustrated, no. But if we define success as a junior rider as winning a lot at the biggest shows, on a number of horses across two disciplines and multiple divsions, than I think it reasonable for the publication that reports on these shows to have an article about her.

    There probably are harder working riders, but it hardly sounds like she sits around filing her nails and texting while mumsy holds her show coat and Rico brings up the next pre-programmed pony.

    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.
    AMEN! If these girls didn't have talent and a passion for the sport, all the money in the world would not make them successful.

    And as far as adults providing oppourtunities...well why not if it is feasible. I bend over backwards to make sure my kids can do the horse thing, and I still don't have enough money at the moment to let them show like their talent allows. I do not begrudge the girls in the article anything, and I am tickled to death for them. Why can some of these posters not be happy for a fellow competitor-the kids are the future of this sport. Without them, there is no more equestrian sport.

    Leave a comment:


  • hntrjmprpro45
    replied
    Originally posted by Mara View Post
    I wonder how many of the posters here who have OPENLY stated that "it's the money, or because they had opportunities I didn't" would really have the mindset to be successful under the rigors of these girls' lives?

    Because riding 7-16 horses a day, EVERY day, is WORK. It is a JOB, no longer a hobby or a competitive sport one takes up for fun and fitness. Unless you're wired mentally for it, that aspect can suck the fun out of riding. It's hard to not become one-dimensional in that world, when the statement uttered daily morphs from "I want to go to the barn instead of the movies/lunch with friends" to "I have to go to the barn."

    There are very few people at any age who can handle the workload and the pressure and still find it "fun".
    This may be a bit off topic to the original issue, but I don't think these girls are even old enough to have been faced with the "big decisions" that make the job hard. Its not just the work load that makes people burn out, its the HARD decisions that come with being a working pro.

    I know that turning down a prom invitation or deciding not to go on vacation or out with friends may seem like a big deal to teenagers but come on, those aren't even life changing events. I think where you REALLY start sorting out the faint of heart is when you hit college age. You start with the decision of "Do I want to go to college or put everything into my riding career?"... Then you get to make decisions like "Do I want to get married or can I even FIND a guy that is willing to put up with the crazy schedule??"... which turns into "Do I even want to start a family or do I have time for kids??"... etc, etc. The stakes are MUCH higher as an adult and from what I have seen, it is because of those types of life changing decisions, that we see promising young pros fizzle out. Then you add on the reality that most young adults have to support themselves rather than having parents there for financial support.

    So for me, I DO applaud their efforts for what they have accomplished as juniors, but I think its too early to say that these kids have what it takes to keep going as pros or to not burn out. And I say that as a pro who spends 80+ hours a week and has to face those same big decisions (and am currently working on the "do I want to have children?" question).

    Leave a comment:


  • twhs
    replied
    Wicked - That was beautiful. Thank you.

    Leave a comment:


  • Stellar_moves
    replied
    Originally posted by Mara View Post
    I wonder how many of the posters here who have OPENLY stated that "it's the money, or because they had opportunities I didn't" would really have the mindset to be successful under the rigors of these girls' lives?

    Because riding 7-16 horses a day, EVERY day, is WORK. It is a JOB, no longer a hobby or a competitive sport one takes up for fun and fitness. Unless you're wired mentally for it, that aspect can suck the fun out of riding. It's hard to not become one-dimensional in that world, when the statement uttered daily morphs from "I want to go to the barn instead of the movies/lunch with friends" to "I have to go to the barn."

    There are very few people at any age who can handle the workload and the pressure and still find it "fun".
    Nicely said!

    A trainer at my barn used to do the big eq back in the day. She was talking to me about all of her horses and how if you really wanted to be successful in the big eq, it almost became a job and was no longer fun. I remember her saying you almost had to ride like it was your job, and not ride just to go out there and have fun. After hearing her experiences with the big eq, it made me appreciate what all of these riders, not just the juniors, put into just to make it.

    Leave a comment:


  • wicked1
    replied
    Hmmm, I read this article and found it...fun. I do have to agree that when you are under the age of 16 you are NOT the writer of the checks that pays for all of the showing, training, buying of horses and so on, however you ARE the one that puts the time in, in the saddle. My family was NOT made of money I had a $1500 Trak mare that reared so bad no one wanted her, I spent years bringing her along enough that I could make into the ring with her...and back out in one piece. And then we qualified for Penn. National, and Washington...and the list went on. I never went to any of those finals because keeping her sound and happy drained what little money I had from my job as a stable hand, I didn't have another horse and I simply didn't have the money to pay the entry fee's. It stunk watching my friends go off to show with the 3 or 4 horses they owned, but so be it, those were the cards I was delt. So I stayed home and rode the trainers horses while she was gone. From there I got my first catch ride, and then another and another then went on to groom for a very sucessful rider/trainer in my area, thus giving me more opportunities then I could hope for. Still the never ending entry fee's were tough for me to cover. So I went to college, re-trained OTTB's and paid my way through school, STILL getting to ride and do what showing I could. I could only pull together enough money to get to one big week long show a year so all of the rest of the time was spent at local lower rated shows, getting miles.

    I am now done with college, married and own a new 15 stall training facility, I have some horses that I have worked very hard on and now as an adult with the ability to get myself and my multiple horses to the "big A shows" I am doing what I would have killed to have done as a kid. The biggest thing I look back at is that no matter how I look at it, I never would be where I am at now if I didn't get the opportunites that I did when I was younger, even if it ment staying home and riding extra horses, THOSE were my best lessons! Now looking forward at my future I'm thrilled to be carving my own path!

    I guess the point of all of this is like I said at the beginning, no matter who the kid is and what money they have backing them THEY are the one's putting the time in, in the saddle. If they are driven enough to jump on any and all opportunities that come their way, they WILL be successful whether it is now or later. Cheers kids, and kick on!

    Leave a comment:


  • laughATTACK
    replied
    Originally posted by Mara View Post
    I wonder how many of the posters here who have OPENLY stated that "it's the money, or because they had opportunities I didn't" would really have the mindset to be successful under the rigors of these girls' lives?

    Because riding 7-16 horses a day, EVERY day, is WORK. It is a JOB, no longer a hobby or a competitive sport one takes up for fun and fitness. Unless you're wired mentally for it, that aspect can suck the fun out of riding. It's hard to not become one-dimensional in that world, when the statement uttered daily morphs from "I want to go to the barn instead of the movies/lunch with friends" to "I have to go to the barn."

    There are very few people at any age who can handle the workload and the pressure and still find it "fun".
    Precisely what I was trying to get at earlier.

    Leave a comment:


  • HorseLuvr
    replied
    Originally posted by Mara View Post
    I wonder how many of the posters here who have OPENLY stated that "it's the money, or because they had opportunities I didn't" would really have the mindset to be successful under the rigors of these girls' lives?

    Because riding 7-16 horses a day, EVERY day, is WORK. It is a JOB, no longer a hobby or a competitive sport one takes up for fun and fitness. Unless you're wired mentally for it, that aspect can suck the fun out of riding. It's hard to not become one-dimensional in that world, when the statement uttered daily morphs from "I want to go to the barn instead of the movies/lunch with friends" to "I have to go to the barn."

    There are very few people at any age who can handle the workload and the pressure and still find it "fun".

    This is VERY true!! Many people can get burnt out easily riding this many horses a day, and it is hard work and you are exhausted by the end of the day. These girls obviously really love riding to be able to do this day in and day out! Congrats to them!

    Leave a comment:


  • Mara
    replied
    I wonder how many of the posters here who have OPENLY stated that "it's the money, or because they had opportunities I didn't" would really have the mindset to be successful under the rigors of these girls' lives?

    Because riding 7-16 horses a day, EVERY day, is WORK. It is a JOB, no longer a hobby or a competitive sport one takes up for fun and fitness. Unless you're wired mentally for it, that aspect can suck the fun out of riding. It's hard to not become one-dimensional in that world, when the statement uttered daily morphs from "I want to go to the barn instead of the movies/lunch with friends" to "I have to go to the barn."

    There are very few people at any age who can handle the workload and the pressure and still find it "fun".

    Leave a comment:


  • darbzilla
    replied
    My mother always said: There are two ways to look at someone more privileged or successful. Either you admire them and learn from what they do. Or you are catty and rude and not learn from them. These girls are great and I suggest taking the 1st route.

    Leave a comment:


  • Stellar_moves
    replied
    Hmm. The only thing I have to say is, yes, money does help in success but it doesn't necessarily get the success. These girls ride so many different horses, and do extremely well on them. I know girls who have bought extremely nice packers and cannot do well to save their life because they do not know how to ride the horse properly. Now, I consider myself a pretty good rider, but I know that I could not get on that many different horses in one day, and ride them all perfectly. They HAVE to have some kind of talent. Money does help, but again, you can't necessarily buy your wins at the Maclay, Devon, Pony Finals, or Medal finals. Give them a break, seriously.

    That's all

    Leave a comment:


  • findeight
    replied
    Originally posted by Angelray View Post
    ...
    Some people have said that the girls in the articles are great role models for their daughters. If you believe this, then I hope you have the time and resources to support them at the level Tori et al. have been supported, because otherwise really successful young riders can simply be a source of agonizing frustration and jealousy...

    ... I wanted the opportunities those girls had so much that it was physically painful and I cried after every episode.... And if people want to admire these girls because they believe they have superior talent and drive, well I guess that’s ok.
    Ummm, I have not read past this one post as it kind of rankled me and I just do not have the time...and I am glad this poster said she did mature some since Horsepower.

    First off, having met 2 of the 3 mentioned (and competed against one's mother), dissing these kids and imlpying it is their fault for creating jealousy is just..well...not their problem. These are some of the nicest kids around-and they are friendly to EVERYBODY just about all the time. If some other teen is crying themselves to sleep over them and their success? That would be the problem of the other kid, not these three and others like them.

    Secondly, their parents do NOT buy all those horses they catch ride-owners ASK for their services-and it's not because they are overindulged rich kids-it's because they are good. And if they get that owners ride? You bet that owner expects a good result. May be on a Large Pony running for HOTY or a making up a Junior Jumper. They need a kid with experience at presenting a top level Pony in Model and hack as well as lay down 90s over the fences or they need solid level 4'+ experince in the Jumpers. No matter how worthy, no kid that lacks that hard mileage is going to be up for those rides. And the kids that get the rides are going to have to produce results. Or they won't get any more of them.

    These kids are under a great deal of pressure to produce results...there is a flip side to all of the perceived "easy access" to top mounts. The most pressure is that they put on themselves when they "fail". I am not so sure so many would want to be them having been around them and a certain other child protege that did not make the article I am close to.

    It's not what you think looking in from outside with envy.

    And, sorry, I grew up with squat, not even a horse. I never cried myself to sleep because some kid I saw in a magazine had more then I did.

    I dunno, the earler idea that a measure of ability would be to ride an untrained horse around a jump course??? And the inferrence they could not handle an "undrugged" horse??? Based on reading a magazine article?? Kind of out there. Honestly, who would want to ride that untrained horse around if they didn't have to????

    Leave a comment:


  • Prime Time Rider
    replied
    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.
    Gee, do you actually KNOW any of these kids personally? I've known Tori since she was about 7 or 8 and I can state with knowledge that success was not bought for her. She was fortunate to have a mother who was a trainer and who is dedicated to Tori's success, but financially her family isn't well off. She catch rode many ponies who were anything but "packers". In fact, a friend of mine was fortunate enough to have Tori ride some of her more difficult and green ponies and win at Pony Finals. FYI, Tori just won her first Grand Prix as a 13 year old riding against some of the best pros in the business. The kid rides 14 to 15 horses EVERYDAY. So, before you start making snarky comments, perhaps you could bother to inform yourself of the FACTS.

    Leave a comment:


  • RugBug
    replied
    Originally posted by chunky munky View Post
    The one child that's parent is a "pro" got her opportunities early on by being seen at the ring. When I had her ride for a pony, her mother didn't really even know us. The child always had a different trainer than her parent. There were no big connections involved.
    But by virtue of being a trainer's kid, she automatically has a "resource" the majority of kids don't. Maybe it wasn't through big connections, but a parent sympathetic to what it takes to ride well, let alone one that is a trainer, is even a leg up over a lot of people.

    Originally posted by Mac123
    Being happy and content with our station lets us be, well, happy, content, and productive members of the horse community
    Originally posted by Mac123
    Different doesn't equal bad or better or worse or right or wrong. It's just different.
    If only that were really true... I don't know how many times I've been told that the ways in which I am a "happy, content, productive member of the horse community" is "less than" someone else's. I don't always care what they think, but sometimes it does sting.

    FWIW - I only see a very few people being critical of these girls and not for many, many pages.

    Leave a comment:


  • Muggle Mom
    replied
    Originally posted by Mac123 View Post
    A year ago I would have been one of the naysayers complaining about the "privileged" kids who had successes funded with the money the grass roots kids can only dream about.

    What I believe now is this: We all have a place in the horse world. Some of us are horse parents, some are owners, some are beginner instructors, some are young horse trainers, some are 4-Hers, some are mid level riders, some are A riders, some are WEF riders, and then there's the few percent that make it to the TOP. NONE of these positions are any more important than the other. None are right or wrong, better or worse, and no matter how attractive the shiny ads in Sideline or COTH, that upper echelon of riders have just as many challenges as the person managing their own 15 stall barn and doing everything from the ground up.

    We can't always control the circumstances surrounding our circumstances. We CAN control how we live within our circumstances. Whether you believe in fate, luck, coincidence, or God, we can't really control where we end up in life, but we can control how we deal with where we are. Being happy and content with our station lets us be, well, happy, content, and productive members of the horse community.

    Without the top riders, we wouldn't have a very important part of our sport. Being a part of the top requires a lot of support - financial and otherwise. And without the rest of the parts of the sport - the grass roots, the mid levels, the upper levels, the top wouldn't have a leg to stand on.

    The fact of the matter is that most of us would trade places with any of these top riders in a heartbeat - financial support and all - and yet are the first to criticize them.

    I'd like to see any of you who are being so critical jump on 8 horses at the top horse show in the country with hundreds (or if webcasted, thousands or more) people watching, compete against Olympians at the ripe old age of 12, and WIN. You can't possibly believe that doing that is a result of money and no talent.....if it was, all the rich kids would be doing it!!

    My recommendation - start worrying more about your own life, your own riding, your own place in this sport and what you're doing to improve it - start living your life and stop criticizing how other people live theirs. At the end of the day, it doesn't matter how they found their success, it's not any more important than you finding your own success in your own way. It would be a whole lot more productive to use all of this negative energy to improve our own riding.

    Heck, I'd love to be a top, top show rider. But I'm not. Can't change that, can only work to get better and better and see where life takes me.

    Different doesn't equal bad or better or worse or right or wrong. It's just different.
    Well said. Thank you for posting this!

    Leave a comment:


  • Fiction
    replied
    Tori's mother is the on-the-road manager for Scott and Ken. To my knowledge, she's not training; I can't imagine she would have time to do both of those jobs. Tori and her mother are two of the hardest working, nicest people I've ever met. And that kid can ride.

    Leave a comment:


  • Mac123
    replied
    A year ago I would have been one of the naysayers complaining about the "privileged" kids who had successes funded with the money the grass roots kids can only dream about.

    What I believe now is this: We all have a place in the horse world. Some of us are horse parents, some are owners, some are beginner instructors, some are young horse trainers, some are 4-Hers, some are mid level riders, some are A riders, some are WEF riders, and then there's the few percent that make it to the TOP. NONE of these positions are any more important than the other. None are right or wrong, better or worse, and no matter how attractive the shiny ads in Sideline or COTH, that upper echelon of riders have just as many challenges as the person managing their own 15 stall barn and doing everything from the ground up.

    We can't always control the circumstances surrounding our circumstances. We CAN control how we live within our circumstances. Whether you believe in fate, luck, coincidence, or God, we can't really control where we end up in life, but we can control how we deal with where we are. Being happy and content with our station lets us be, well, happy, content, and productive members of the horse community.

    Without the top riders, we wouldn't have a very important part of our sport. Being a part of the top requires a lot of support - financial and otherwise. And without the rest of the parts of the sport - the grass roots, the mid levels, the upper levels, the top wouldn't have a leg to stand on.

    The fact of the matter is that most of us would trade places with any of these top riders in a heartbeat - financial support and all - and yet are the first to criticize them.

    I'd like to see any of you who are being so critical jump on 8 horses at the top horse show in the country with hundreds (or if webcasted, thousands or more) people watching, compete against Olympians at the ripe old age of 12, and WIN. You can't possibly believe that doing that is a result of money and no talent.....if it was, all the rich kids would be doing it!!

    My recommendation - start worrying more about your own life, your own riding, your own place in this sport and what you're doing to improve it - start living your life and stop criticizing how other people live theirs. At the end of the day, it doesn't matter how they found their success, it's not any more important than you finding your own success in your own way. It would be a whole lot more productive to use all of this negative energy to improve our own riding.

    Heck, I'd love to be a top, top show rider. But I'm not. Can't change that, can only work to get better and better and see where life takes me.

    Different doesn't equal bad or better or worse or right or wrong. It's just different.

    Leave a comment:


  • RollingInTheDeep
    replied
    Money or not, circumstances good or bad...

    They're doing something right! Be happy for them.

    Leave a comment:


  • chunky munky
    replied
    Originally posted by InWhyCee Redux View Post
    Having a parents who is her/himself a professional trainer with good connections and access is a resource that cannot be underestimated. And if Mom or Dad is not a pro, there is
    nothing you can do to force them to become one. (That said, I would not want the added pressure of being in the family business!)
    The one child that's parent is a "pro" got her opportunities early on by being seen at the ring. When I had her ride for a pony, her mother didn't really even know us. The child always had a different trainer than her parent. There were no big connections involved.

    Leave a comment:


  • InWhyCee Redux
    replied
    Originally posted by Mara View Post
    I think at this point if Reed or Tori (not sure about Taylor Ann Adams, but I know the first two were born into horsey families, though Reed's parents compete as ammies) weren't 200% loving what they're doing, it would show. Neither girl gives the impression that they never had a choice in the matter.
    I feel that all three love what they're doing, and they are exceptional riders and horsewoman -- no argument there whatsoever!

    I was just pointing out that, while anyone can be resourceful, there are some resources that just cannot be bought -- natural athletic ability and a horse-training parent being two. (And because it DOES take a village -- big shout
    out to my mom here-- she doesn't ride but loves horses, found a way to get
    my horse-crazed tweenage self in the saddle, and encourages me to this day.
    And, no, I have no natural athletic ability.)

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