A Gilded Year: Adrienne Sternlicht’s Path to the World Stage

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merica’s new ‘golden girl,’ Adrienne Sternlicht, has two feet firmly rooted on the ground – a natural groundedness that is increasingly impressive when you look at the lightning-fast trajectory of her professional riding career. There’s something else there too; an excitement that seems to radiate off the 25-year-old rider.

The up-and-comer, a member of the NetJets U.S. Show Jumping Team at this year's World Equestrian Game, is a perfect lesson in juxtaposition – focused and collected while simultaneously wearing her heart on her sleeve. She famously wept tears of joy at the official World Equestrian Games press conference in Tryon, N.C., following Team USA’s thrilling gold medal victory. She candidly shares her experiences and feelings in a way that is exceptionally refreshing in the world of sports. Digging deeper, she seems quite careful to not let all of this newfound stardom go to her head. She’s here to make her mark as an athlete, but she hasn’t forgotten to enjoy the ride – especially when that ride in on board her horse of a lifetime, a gold medal hanging around her neck.