The 29-year-old rider just had one fence down on the course with Don Juan Van De Donkhoeve, the oxer into the double at 13a, which followed on four strides from the unusually-shaped wall at fence 12.
“My horse jumped unbelievable, I really couldn’t be happier with him,” said Jessica, adding that she had expected to need to ride forward more on the four strides, but her horse has a big stride and she jumped the wall really forward. “But all in all I’m thrilled with the round and excited for the rest of the week.”
Jessica Springsteen: Olympics as a first championship
Jessica has not made the cut of the top 30 riders who progress to the individual final tomorrow, but she is expected to be in action again in the team competition on Friday as part of the US trio.
Talking about making her Olympic debut here in Tokyo, Jessica said: “It’s not only my first Olympics, but also my first championships – you definitely get a little bit more jitters going in, but being on a team with Kent [Farrington], McLean [Ward] and Laura [Kraut], who have such incredible experience, I feel really confident.”
Jessica has been riding the 12-year-old stallion Don Juan Van De Donkhoeve, by Bamako De Muze, for two years.
“He’s super brave and so talented,” she said. “He does everything so easy and he really gives me a lot of confidence when I’m going in the rankings [classes]. I know him like the back of my hand now and he’s so reliable so that gives me a really good feeling for my first experience at a championship.
“He’s sweet, he whinnies to you every time you walk in the barn. He’s a stallion, but he’s really kind.”
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