I'm just going to laugh off the catty stabs. Again, I am REALLY impressed with this rider and she can wear her feelings on her sleeve or not. We all post on this part of the forum for pats on the back. Sometimes I read some very good advice, as Anabel has posted, and the OP will be grateful. Most often people don't want any constructive criticism, just ooh's and ahh's.
You all have beat my comments up, and I continue to find good things to post about the OP. I love how she is jumping x-country with her stirrups home to stick the saddle, in case I didn't mention that one.
I was speaking as a coach might. If you were aspiring to compete at high levels, which IMHO the OP could do with THIS horse, and there was something that was preventing you from the ribbons, you might want to know this. Do you all never watch those up-close-and-personal Olympic athlete stories every 4 years? I DO. There is always great sacrifice for the payoff, and often these athletes push beyond what each thinks he or she is capable of doing.
"Talent" is a term originally meaning a coin used in trade. Having "talents" indicated wealth through hard work. I used the word, "talent" to mean that the OP has worked very hard in her sport.
Laura Kraut About Laura Kraut - Laura Kraut Official website
Is a very good example of hard work, and I'm sure that the OP would agree. She still rides and has competed for over 40 years, and is a good example of "talent."
If you remember a member of the US 1994 figure skating team, Tonya Harding, was a talented
skater, on the Olympic Team and she won the US championship just prior to it . Although she finished I believe in the top 4, this woman never made anything of herself.
Much of sport is a mind game. I hope that the OP will not suffer the "Over 18yo burn out."