Jessica Springsteen will represent the U.S. in equestrian’s jumping event, riding Don Juan van de Donkhoeve.
Bruce Springsteen’s daughter, Jessica, is headed to Tokyo as part of the U.S. Olympic equestrian team. She was one of the riders named to the jumping squad.
Springsteen, 29, will ride Don Juan van de Donkhoeve, a 12-year-old Belgian Warmblood stallion, at the Olympics. The other members of the jumping team include Kent Farrington of Wellington, Fla., Laura Kraut of Royal Palm Beach, Fla., and McClain Ward of Brewster, N.Y.
Springsteen’s official U.S. Equestrian Federation biography says she started taking riding lessons at the age of five and is now one of the top jumping athletes in the U.S. She is currently ranked third in the U.S. in jumping behind Kraut and Ward.
“She has represented the U.S. as part of FEI Nations Cup teams, including the winning teams in both Palm Beach, Fla. and Wellington, Fla., in 2020, Dublin, Ireland in 2014 and at the 2018 FEI Jumping Nations Cup Final in Barcelona, Spain,” her USEF page says.
USA TODAY reports Springsteen was an alternate for the 2012 Olympic team and did not make the 2016 team.
Her USEF bio does not make any mention of her famous father.
Equestrian has three disciplines: jumping, dressage and eventing. Jumping is the form of equestrian most casual fans likely think about. The rider and horse are timed over a course in which the horses have to jump obstacles which can include parallel rails, triple bars, water jumps and simulated stone walls. Time penalties may be assessed if the horse and rider don’t clear the obstacle or if they skip it. The horse and rider who get through the course the fastest and with the fewest penalties wins.
Equestrian is the only Olympic sport in which men and women will compete against each other individually on equal footing for the same medals.
Author: Travis Pittman
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