Bruce Springsteen’s Daughter, Jessica, Debuts at the Olympics
Horse and rider roamed the field for a few moments at the sound of the starting bell, then off they went, leaping jump after jump, accelerating through the water hazard in the middle of the ring. They were quick and clean until the penultimate set of jumps, when Don cut a single post, then sailed to the finish just over a second below the optimal time of 89 seconds. .
The performance placed Springsteen in 24th place, with 24 competitors left. The first 30, including ties, would advance. The score is calculated by a combination of timing points and penalty for knocking down posts. Springsteen had a time without penalty, but she received four penalty points for the post stroke.
A waiting game ensued. Every runner who had a clean and fast race pushed Springsteen further up the standings.
In the press zone, as she fell tied for 25th and then 27th, Springsteen said she miscalculated the distance between the jump where Don cut the post and the one before it. She noted how many good horses and riders remained. She seemed to know it was going the wrong way.
And yet, she was basking in a spotlight brighter than anything she had known.
“It’s not just my first Olympics, it’s my first championship,” she said. “I had a few chills to come.”
She said her teammates, namely Farrington, helped her through. And Don, she said, is funny and likable, and winks at her when she walks into the barn.
The elimination came with five riders remaining, when Maikel van der Vleuten of the Netherlands had a clear run and sent Springsteen tied for 31st, with a place in Thursday’s final due of an overturned pole. No American runner advanced. There is fodder for a sad ride somewhere.
But, Bruce, know it too, from father to father, 6,700 miles away: your daughter has done good.
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