Jessica Brendlinger Thermal 2.0

I love writing our rider profiles. Crafting the questions that will help me get to know them. Crafting the story so everyone else can get to know them too. But every now and again things don’t go as I planned. Sometimes, they go even better.

 We all thought it would be great to catch up with Jessica Brendlinger again. Now a two-time veteran of Thermal, her latest adventure put her on a new horse, in a new class—and in a whole new situation, at a show without her parents. Now, utterly in her own words and all about being on her own, here’s the first excerpt from the wonderful short story Jess sent back to me when I crafted a few questions… 


In the past my parents have more or less always gone with me. Last year I went to Thermal for a week without my mom and then she flew out so this being the first time going alone was actually kind of exciting. Three weeks is the longest I’ve ever been away from home, period with or without my parents—so needless to say I was pretty excited! But I knew going without my parents would have a few drawbacks. In the past they have always been there to support me both financially and emotionally. But for me I just went into the whole thing with the mindset of just go with the flow everything is going to be fine. Honestly for me the hardest part for me was leaving at the airport. It was the first time I had ever flown alone and saying goodbye to my parents once I passed security was hard, but as soon as I stepped foot on the (airport) train there was no going back. I was excited and so ready to get to Palm Springs. I’ve always been pretty independent so going off alone wasn’t too hard for me. My parents raised me well and I know how to handle myself so I have them to thank for preparing me so well to be on my own.


Being at a horse show without my mom was different because she wasn’t there to answer my every beck and call like the amazing horse show mom she is. I was on my own and honestly it was amazing. Not to say I don’t love my mom being there with me but it was great to be on my own and be responsible for myself and getting all my own things done. I think it was also easy for me to be alone because when I’m at a horse show that is where I feel most comfortable, like if I could, I would never go home. I would just travel and show non-stop so it was easy for me to be there on my own.



Tomorrow, we discover that Jessica wasn’t completely alone—and get a look at life at one of the HITS shows.

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