Podcast Episode 38: Charlotte Jorst

Podcast Episode 38: Charlotte Jorst | Earnest, Dedicated and Hard Working

In this podcast, we speak with Charlotte Jorst. In this episode we chat through Charlotte's successful business ventures, competing as an adult amateur and future Olympic goals.

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Full Transcript Expand to full transcript

Natasha (00:00):
Welcome to this Your Riding Success episode with the amazing, brilliant Charlotte Jorst. Charlotte Jorst is a Danish-born American Grand Prix dressage rider. Charlotte success story is one of earnest dedication, persistent optimism, and unabashed hard work. An avid horse lover from day one, she rode Fjord horses bareback in her youth, but never received any formal instructor. As an adult she shifted her focus into building a successful career as an entrepreneur and business owner, creating and growing the watch brand Skagen into a distinguished company that was later acquired by Fossil. The most recent venture in this internationally adored sunscreen brand, Kastel Denmark, the joyful dedication to her horses, natural understanding of them as individuals and drive to improve herself and her equine partners have led to nearly immediate success. One of the few elite Grand Prix riders competing as an adult amateur, she was living proof that hard work pays off and it's never too late to start a new adventure.
Natasha (00:54):
I have never met an such an amazing human as Charlotte. I feel honored that I got to spend an hour of my time with her, and she really was a kindred spirit and really, um, her the way she sees the world and the way she tacks life is something I really admire about her and really enjoy, um, exploring. So I really, really enjoyed this conversation and I hope you enjoy listening to it as much as I did having it.
New Speaker (01:18):
Welcome to The Your Riding Success podcast. My name is Natasha Althoff, Grand Prix dressage rider from Australia, author of three books and a leading online trainer of riders all around the world, wanting to take their riding to the next level. I'm also a shopaholic mother of two amazing children and obsessed with helping riders to be all they can be. Each week I'm going to bring in new stories of inspiration, ideas, and strategies of how to make real progress in your riding and give you actionable advice on overcoming riding fear and anxiety. So you can take your riding to the next level and be the rider you dream to be. So let's get into today 's episode. Thrilled to have you on the podcast. Charlotte. Welcome.
Charlotte (01:56):
Thank you so much. I've been so excited to be here. It's been, it's been, I've been looking forward for weeks.
Natasha (02:03):
I love it. So I guess the first question is how did you get started? Why dressage? How did it all begin?
Charlotte (02:11):
Well, when I was a kid, I rode ponies and then, um, and then I, you know, then I started the business and I had kids and then the whole thing I could never kinda ride again. And then when, um, I turned 35, my husband gave me a horse for our 10 years anniversary now, not knowing what would happen. And it was of course completely the wrong horse. He was four years old and he was like completely misunderstood. But, um, I rode it for a little bit and then I gave it to my daughter. She did Hunter jumper. And then I actually started doing Hunter jumper for a long time with the girls when my two girls that went. So we had a great time and I had zero timing for the hunter jumper. I would like not able to count and I couldn't do anything.
Charlotte (03:01):
So I never became very good and it drove me nuts. So then I was like, Oh, I'll start dressage. Then I, uh, and then that's how I started dressage. So like a 42 or 43, I started dressage and again, the wrong horse, but at least now I could ride a little bit and then I just started there and just started doing, but then it was always after work and adult amateur people still remember me, you know, driving around with my trailer and my car. And I do, you know, do their own grooming and Oh, those things I went through for years and it was, so it was just after work and I was a travel then not, so it was very interrupted.
Natasha (03:42):
Yeah. Okay. Well, I love it. Let me, let me unpack for psychology. So you, um, were very much so back in school, what did you want to be when you grew up? What was the plan?
Charlotte (03:53):
I was, I always wanted to be a millionaire.
Natasha (04:00):
I love it. Don't you dare apologize.
Charlotte (04:03):
It was not cool to say in Denmark because it's like really socialistic. And really, so when I said I wanted to be a millionaire, if you were like, Oh my God, don't you want to do something for others?
Natasha (04:22):
Yeah. It's when you become a millionaire, you can do so much for others.
Charlotte (04:25):
Yeah. So then, uh, so, so that's what I wanted. So I just wanted to find means to an end too. And I figured I could do whatever I wanted, which is exactly how we'd kind of worked out. So all those years I have to say, I, I always wanted to ride. I always, always my dream for all those years, I had Skagen to start riding. I mean, he was, so it was such a powerful emotion. I would sometimes sit at my desk and I would just think about when I could start riding.
Natasha (05:00):
That is amazing.
Charlotte (05:02):
Incredible. And I really, I put so much passion, so much work into that company because at one day I wanted it out and I was said to my husband, we need to have an out before I turn 50, because otherwise I think I'm going to, it's going to be too late for me to really, to get, to get somewhere with it.
Natasha (05:19):
And was it always, so it was, was it the driving force, the money or was it the driving force the money for the horses?
Charlotte (05:27):
I don't ever think, you know, once you're in your business, the driving force is never the money, the driving is simply, making it bigger and making it more successful. Um, having fun and, and never really was about the money. And it was, it was more about, um, building that company up. And then, so at that I could ride one day.
Natasha (05:51):
Yeah. The freedom that the time, cause you understood, we need some time here. So you set the goal for 50, you hit it earlier, didn't you?
Charlotte (05:59):
I did it at 49. We sold, that's funny. I called everybody. I went out and told every, I could barely ride. I could talk there, but now I'm going to the Olympics. Like,
Natasha (06:12):
But you were used to that your whole life has been people saying, yeah. Right. And you're doing it anyway. So rock on.
Charlotte (06:19):
And then I started really riding and uh, and then I got, um, Nintendo, which has been really, really great horse for me. And, uh, and then I really started, you know, applying myself on riging and I trained with [inaudible] for a year and a half and it was great. And I trained with, um, with different people and it's been, and I've really, really applied myself. And, uh, with the same sestinas I did was Skagen and it's just been an incredible journey. And it's been, uh, it's been so much fun with those. I just have so much fun with the horses. I just think it's such a privilege to be able to ride for me because I wasn't able to for so many years, and it was such a big dream. So to execute it, it's just, I'm appreciative every day.
Natasha (07:10):
Yeah. Yeah. Okay. So let me, let me try and understand, are you a competitive person was part of the business success, just this drive to, to win against you, not to win against the world, but just to be better, to be better, a better company, a better product, a better result. And is that now in the riding, like you straightaway chosen Olympics, it wasn't, I just want to go for a little hack. It was, what's the biggest thing I can do here that bit. I'll do that. So I'm just loving that I can resonate with that so much. So what's, what is your nature? What is your, your wiring of how you approach your life?
Charlotte (07:48):
Well, I think that is the wiringit just to, uh, to win and, and with, with Skagen, it was always about getting it bigger, um, to the point that it became such a compulsion that you could never, I could never work hard enough to feel the serpent of the success. So in the end, you know, it was like a hamster wheel. You just worked and work. And when I decided, when we decided to really sell the company was a Sunday afternoon, I'll never forget. I went out with my girls and we went to buy shoes and I went up to the calendar at a woman's, a Macy's and there was the watches. And I didn't like the way they were displayed. So this assembled the whole display and our nice little shoe buying thing became like this obsessive compulsive taking all the watches down, building it back up five hours later, they're, you know, exhausted.
Charlotte (08:39):
I am exhausted. Everybody is just, and I could never relax. And then I was just like, in order for me to get out of this, I have to just, just get on with something else. So a little bit of a, um, nature in that, you know, I get, I get compulsively competitive about things. I just have to, uh, I just have to do it and I will drive myself into the ground and everything for that and that, whatever it takes, whatever it takes with the horses, I just have a lot more fun with the horses. And I love that. You always, first of all, you can't really be that compulsive. You can't overtrain. Cause you have to have them on that side
Natasha (09:29):
And you can't. Cause I'm a lot, like you make it happen. You can't make it happen. That's a whole other world. You can't make anything. And it's like, Whoa, I'm in Disneyland. This is a whole different world.
Charlotte (09:43):
And sometimes he does some go that week. That's a week it's time.
Natasha (09:53):
Yeah. It it's, it's it. Oh my God. Yes, yes, yes. So firstly, let's go back to when you sold the company, I love that you had enough awareness to go. I have to get out out. Um, because I know me and I know what I want to do. Was there sadness? I think I would have cried and felt, felt very weird for a couple months.
Charlotte (10:14):
It was, it was weird. And it, you do feel sadness, but you know, you also, it wasn't like a short-term thing. It wasn't like, spur, you know, I've been in it for 23 years. He was very, very, and he was, he was all encompassing, um, for so many years, that was never, we owned the company outright and there was never ever, there was always so much risk involved in it when you own it out. Right. And it was never, you never could relax. So that was the third belief. And he was also funny because it was so, uh, difficult, like I said, to feel the servant, but once you had sold the company and now you have the money in the bank, it was almost like a stick in the ground. Okay. I did deserve this because if somebody wanted to pay this for it. So it was like, in that sense, it was such a huge sigh of relief. Like you didn't have to just keep on running against the clock almost.
Natasha (11:09):
What a gift. Okay. So we are in a whole new era, you've got the horses, you've got the freedom, you've got the time and you go competition hat on, I'm going to go to the Olympics. So was it hard to find coaches that were on side with you that went, yep. We can do this, let's do this. Or did you get a lot of people going that's nice and, and not really giving you what you needed?
Charlotte (11:34):
Hmm. It was definitely a mixture. There was definitely people that were like, um, this will never, they were like, yeah. Right. And they will, this will never happen. And then there were other people that, um, I think kind of got me early on and were like, Oh, maybe, maybe if anyone can, you probably might be,
Natasha (11:55):
Wants to be one person. It would be, I love it.
Charlotte (12:00):
Well, I would say that that is Def, that was definitely a mixture. And there still is, you know, there's still, I still feel like sometimes I feel like an imposter, you know, that because so many people have spent a whole life just riding and being in the barn. And, and I try to tell them that, you know, I've also spent my whole life working. I just worked in a different way, but it doesn't that I haven't worked for this, you know, I just,
Natasha (12:25):
And you don't know, you, you totally understand discipline and commitment and, um, being particular and all those other traits that you need.
Charlotte (12:34):
Yeah. Well, I can try it, you know? So it was, it's been definitely. Um, and then there has been, you know, of course some kind of jealousy, but I'm in general. I feel like I feel very, uh, loved also on the internet and stuff. I don't feel like I get, um, I get like crabby people, you know, criticizing me tremendously or, or anything like that. I actually feel this is a very human community, horseback riding people. I think they're great people. And, and I feel very, you know, I just feel very comfortable in it and it does criticize me or critcize others. I usually attack it head on because I hate that it's an ad or I hate that you come up the side of a, of an arena, you know, they're clearly not doing well. And then people out there standing criticizing, I hate that because you don't know the story of the person. He could be a horse that they rescued the week prior and they actually doing a great job with it or something. So I always say something if I hear something, because I feel that this is hard.
Natasha (13:49):
Perfect philosophy. Abso-freaking-lutely yep. Okay. So, um, you you've, what, what year was it when you said Olympics? What, what year?
Charlotte (14:00):
Well, that's what I said six years ago. Right. So that was in
Natasha (14:06):
2014. 14 years. Okay. And did you go, I'll be there at 2016 or were you planning 2020
Charlotte (14:18):
For sure. I was like 16 and I was so disappointed.
Natasha (14:28):
Oh my God. Yes.
Charlotte (14:31):
I was so disappointed. And I remember somebody said to me, what if it becomes 20? Then I was like, uh, 20, 20. I was like, Oh my God, 2022. And now I'm going to be way too old. That won't work. It has to be in 16 or nothing. It was so hard. I was like, this is a lot harder than I feel like it would be.
Natasha (14:52):
I know. You just got to trot on the spot a bit, do some skipping that takes six months to learn. I'm sure.
Charlotte (15:01):
So odd. I was like, okay, so now, um, so, but now I feel like I'm actually, uh, I went to world cup finals in Sweden in 16. Yeah.
Natasha (15:12):
Oh, awesome. How was that? What was that your first international?
Charlotte (15:17):
Nope, that was the first I did nation's cups, I think in 15, but that was like the first, really big one where, you know, the 15 best in the world are there. And I, I had one dealt with Edward Gal in Rotterdam, which was like, I was so star struck, but they're at that, uh, at that, that was, you know, everybody was there and I was like there with them and he was, I remember that was, it was, it was really crazy. It was really, really, because it was the first one where it was like a real event, but I also had a lot of fun with it because I felt like I felt like I derserved to be there. And then the other thing is that it was the end of it. It wasn't qualifying for anything, so I could just relax and have fun with it. And I did, and I did really well there. Yeah. So it was, it was really a good experience. I loved it.
Natasha (16:08):
Okay. So that was 16. You're like, Oh, so it happened at the end. So the Olympics. Okay. Definitely what you then like bring on 2020, I've got this.
Charlotte (16:18):
But at that point I was way more educated and I, I was, uh, I, I knew then how difficult it was going to be. And, um, so, um, I decided just to, you know, pluck along and, uh, and, and, and get more experience inside the international world. So then it became more strategically like pursuing and really live. And, um, and
Natasha (16:45):
When you say the strategic, so obviously in your company for you to build it from absolutely nothing to what it became, did you have mentors, coaches, people in your lives that helped you to do that? Or did you figure it all out on your own?
Charlotte (16:59):
You know, we had, I had my husband, so we had it together and we just, I feel like the customer just as the horse will usually tell you what they want. And then you just keep on doing more of what they want. And I feel like with the horses, that if you just do what the horse is good at and you praise them, then it, it becomes very, very, it become more cooperative. And I feel like in the ring, you just, you need that collaboration. So you have to like, it's the same with you in the morning you wake up and you can't, you can't, you hate doing yoga in the morning. Now somebody forces you. I mean, you're going to be disgruntled the whole day, but if you love to, for a run and I feel the same with the horses. So I always try to do everything they love to do every day, or at least finish up on a good note. And then, you know, you sprinkle in a little bit of the difficult stuff for them. And then I learned by, by, by the 16th, I really knew that. And I was really having a good philosophy. So that became my strategy just because I knew I had to do it quicker than others, because I couldn't find a quick way of getting up, getting good quickly on my side.
Natasha (18:28):
How did you,
Natasha (18:32):
No, you go, you go, no, no, I'm done. No, I'm just fascinated. Like you, as you said, you said, you got to the end of 16, you went, well, I'm going to have to be very strategic. You understood, as you said, okay, well, I'm going to, I don't have the time. I've got to find the quick way. I've got to find, you know, what Matt, the, the bits that matter, like in business, we do lots of things, but what are the bits that really are the things that matter? And, and I feel that you've done the same with the riding going, okay, well, what are those bits? So, um, did you rely on getting strategy for someone else from other people, or were you aware everyone's strategy is their strategy and I'm unique and I've got, I've got to do it a faster way and I'm going to have to get my thinking cap on and figure this new path out for me.
Charlotte (19:15):
I think it was a combination of the two. Um, first of all, I had, I've had really, really great trainers, but I also have had trainers that I have not. Then I trained with them for a year and a half. And I feel like a lot of people get stuck with someone. And I knew that I was, you know, so I would train with somebody a year and a half and then I'd have to go, okay, I have to move on. Um, and now I've really found a great, uh, person that I've been with the last three years and, and she's fantastic. And we compliment each other extremely well. And it's not so often that we get sick and tired of each other and that she also, she also recognizes that, that I have my own method, but I don't think anyone can do it on, on your own. And she's a real horseman. And, uh, and I'm that, I'm that really encouraging person that to the horses. So, um, I think that's a really, that's a really good map. So it's definitely a little bit of everything, but I think the force, the forte is to move on when it's no longer working.
Natasha (20:22):
Hmm. Mm.
Charlotte (20:26):
Yeah.
Natasha (20:26):
And that can be hard for some people. Like I would also think the things that you've learned in your business help to make those decisions you have to in business, you have to make decisions quickly and you have to go with them. And I think in some other cases that it can be hard if people aren't used to or practice to that, that they put off making the decision, not realizing that that is in fact, making a decision and staying with the trainer for however long.
Charlotte (20:50):
And then they also get afraid of the horse then that they live other people's ride the horse, or, uh, so there's a many, many pitfalls along the way. And you just have to kind of stay the course. And, and, and, and then the other thing that I think is, uh, that, that I, that I is a strength is I think it's, it's easier to be imperfect at Grand Prix then to, at first level, people always say, Oh, I want to try the first level before I move up to second level. I'm like, when, when, when did you, when did anyone last time get a hundred percent? No one gets 100%. It's easier to be imperfect. At least you can say, well, I screwed up, but at least it was at Grand Prix.
Natasha (21:37):
I didn't get 50% Grand Prix is way cooler than a 65% prelim, but that's me.
Charlotte (21:46):
And then, you know, you figure it out. So I also think that going for it, I think I suck. And then they find excuses for not doing it.
Natasha (22:00):
Mm Hmm. Yep. So let's talk about then horse choices. You're in 2016, did you trust that you knew? So I don't feel I'm good at picking horses. I always get the black pretty ones. Um, and so I don't, I should not be trusted. I don't know what that's like. I don't even notice. Sorry. Did you have to rely on people to help you find these horses? Or did you, are you, do you have a good natural eye or how does that work?
Charlotte (22:36):
I do not have a good eye and I do not have, uh, good people to help me because everybody always wanted to make money from me. So that has been such a hassle and so many bad choices. And, um, but, and, and I've been, I feel like I felt like such a failure a lot of times, because I feel like taking advantage. I think that's the hardest part of everybody's just out to get you, whether you were buying a $50,000 horse or a 500,000, or I just feel like, you know, it's, it's a very dishonest industry and that has been a very different, difficult things for me. I've just been lucky to have happened in Nintendo throughout, um, that has been, that had a key for three years, which was really good. And now I have a really good group of horses, but it's been a very uphill battle and I am very, very positive, but also slightly naive person. I like to believe in people.
Natasha (23:40):
Me too, all people are good, aren't they? Yeah.
Charlotte (23:47):
And if they just aren't in the horse business and I don't know, then people say, Oh, the things that better, I'm like, I've had a horrible experience. And then they say, Oh, the Dutch are better. No. Well, the Germans, the Germans, I still at faith in the Spanish people. Cause I've never been there to buy a horse. I love it. It's really difficult. And I feel like it's difficult for everybody. So,
Natasha (24:18):
And even that aside, because I do think that's a huge part of it. And then even if everyone's being honest, it's a horse. They change like to make a decision about a partnership. We don't get married. Like we date. We spent a lot of time going, is this the right life partner to walk this path with, but with a horse, you get one ride, maybe two, if you're lucky three and make a decision.
Charlotte (24:43):
And then they come over usually from Europe and then yes, it's so difficult to manage the shoe, the environment. I think it's really, really, really difficult. Especially if you get one over that's that is doing Grand Prix in is 10 or 11. And I mean, it's almost impossible to keep them sound and no it's extremely difficult, or then you can buy a five-year-old, but then, you know, it takes forever.
Natasha (25:14):
Yeah. We don't have that time.
Charlotte (25:16):
There was no winning with that. It's just a very difficult, and I have just gotten lucky with Nintendo and then now I have Galaxy that's developing incredibly and I have, but Botticelli that's developed. So now I, all of a sudden have a little bit of streak of luck, which I was so good.
Natasha (25:34):
Bring it on. Yeah. Okay. So you've got three horses that you ride
Charlotte (25:39):
I have five actually.
Natasha (25:41):
Yeah. Okay. What does a week look like? You've gone from, I don't have time to ride. I'm running my business to buy horses. How do you spend your days
Charlotte (25:53):
Early in the morning? And then I go ride. So I sit on the first one at eight o'clock and then I, um, I ride them all very differently. Nintendo loves his trail rides. So I start with him. He needs to be ridden first in the morning because otherwise he won't get left. Yeah. So then I'd usually, and then I just ride him 10, 15 minutes to keep him in shape. And then I move on and I'm usually done by one, depending on if I have to do many, many trail bikes, then I go home. I check in on the business. I do emails in the afternoon. Uh, I do usually a yoga a couple of times a week. I go for a walk with the dog and then I took over the next morning.
Natasha (26:35):
Yeah. Yeah. Okay. And do you just have a smile on your face?
Charlotte (26:41):
If I'm in Reno product meetings? And I also do a lot of social media where, when, if I'm in Reno, we have a whole day, every week of social media where she takes me and we do little tidbits of things. So that can be, that's a little bit different when I'm up there. So I worked quite a bit with my,
Natasha (27:02):
No. I'd love to know Do you think that you were like, do you feel I've worked to this week or is everything you're doing? Whether it's work, whether it's riding, whatever it is, is your life just amazing or do you go, there is 10 hours there, five hours. Is there 10 hours? Is there 30 hours of work? So to me, my definition of work is the things I don't like to do. Like I am so not working right now. I am having a fliggin blast. Um, is that, like it is for you?
Charlotte (27:30):
Do you sometimes feel like your days a little bit daunting? Yes. Terrified. Yeah. That's what it feels like. Mostly, especially like when I go to bed in the evening, then the next day seems daunting to me because there's just so many things, but that's, that's as close to work as I guess I would say daunting is more the word than real work. I don't feel I have a work, but sometimes I just feel like it's, it's overwhelming with all the projects in one day.
Natasha (28:00):
And is that just our personality? Cause we like so many things and we want to do that and that, and that. And surely we can fit that in too.
Charlotte (28:07):
Exactly. I think that's just the personality and I wouldn't want it any other way, but it still gets, you know, the day before, you know, you still kind of go, Oh my God, if I don't sleep, please let me sleep well, because otherwise I'm just going to drag even though that feeling.
Natasha (28:24):
Absolutely. I love it. All right. So you've got some great horses now, were you, um, were you in a good place for 2020 or the fact that it's been moved to 2021? Is that a good thing for you in terms of where your horses are at?
Charlotte (28:39):
No way? I think I'm gonna, um, I'm trying all the Nintendo again, he, was in a really great place last year, but he's still in a really great place. He's going to be 18 next year. Um, but he's in a great place. I just had him checked by the team that, and he's absolutely perfect and going and, uh, and I'm doing a new freestyle, so I'm very excited then I have the others, but I'm not sure that there'll be, um, ready to do the qualifications next year. You don't know. I still have a few months and both Botticelli and, um, and Galaxy up very, very coming along very fast. So you never know what, you never know, whether they be getting a score in March or something and then going to Europe and you don't know.
Natasha (29:26):
Yeah. And do you think about 24 or have you given yourself any fixed ideas around when you stop riding or if you're going to be in 2050? I don't even know if that's an Olympic year, but how do you go sit and do you plan for your riding?
Charlotte (29:43):
Well, what I have really learned is that the competitions exist in your head. It's like, yeah. So I feel like that's who you're competing with. You're competing in your head and physically, unless I fall off or, you know, knock on wood, I don't feel like I have any of the mutations. I feel like I'm in great shape and I can, I can totally do 24 and maybe 28. Um, but so that's, that's exactly, that's exactly how I feel. And I thought I didn't think I'd be this way, but it is. Yeah. It's very cool.
Natasha (30:21):
So cool. Absolutely. Okay. So, um, what would you say has been your biggest competition highlight so far when you look back at your career, what's been your favorite moment?
Charlotte (30:36):
Uh, my favorite moment has been the world cup in Sweden and the nation's cup in Rotterdam. And then I have to say the, um, the central park show was incredible with all those skyscrapers around me and, and my daughter was studying and in New York at the time, so everybody was there. So those were my best, my best moments and Wellington, you know, and all the competitions there. I think it's been so much fun to go there and compete and meet all these people.
Natasha (31:09):
Yeah, yeah, yeah. Yep. Okay. And for what about, um, cause everyone listening, they're going, Oh, well this sounds all very magical and fabulous. Um, do we have a competition where we came dead last? Last, we got eliminated. It was,
Charlotte (31:27):
Oh my God. It's been such a nightmare. So the first thing I, I always dressed up when I was, I knew a festival of champions. I always knew it was like in back when I started riding in 14 was that was like this thing to do Stephanie Peters everybody was there. So I was like, Oh my God, I have to go there. So I qualified on you. Challenges I took to go to Colorado was Nintendo, just got Nintendo. And then I had, Vitale's had to go to Colorado and it was, it was snowing this park and it was like insanely difficult to qualify, but I did. And I go there and I totally screw up. I mean, to such an extent, I can't remember the course wrong course constantly on both horses. And it is just a complete nightmare. And last off, of course, everybody's just shaking their head. See, see, we told her and there she is, she's not doing it. I remember hiding in the stall because I was so embarrassed all day.
Charlotte (32:40):
My throat was so dry from not having anything to drink for 10 hours that I finally came out and then everybody was just like, Oh, hi, how are you? Nobody even remembered our hearts screwed up. And that's when I just never mattered. It didn't matter. I tried and I was doing it and I never had that attitude again. I was at one time I actually got eliminated from central park because I did something wrong. And, and I have also bought, I was a first rider. This is a good one on a team, I remember that new FEI rule that if you're wrong road wrong course, twice, you got eliminated. I was the first rider in the world getting eliminated on that.
Natasha (33:24):
Hey, congratulations. Rockstar.
Charlotte (33:28):
So I have had the worst time. So, and you know, even now you look back at the years and overall it's been going really well. I mean, you have, it's been incredible dream, but then I looked at individual tests along the way, I've had many bad tests in between.
Natasha (33:50):
Exactly. And it just sounds like a learning journey. And like you said, everybody has them, but normally they're done in prelim, as you said, because people start there. You just happened to do them internationally grand Prix, but same learning, same learning. We've all got to learn. Oh, it's like really important to learn your tests. I thought it was just a guideline.
Charlotte (34:10):
No, I haven't had I'm the worst and I still cannot remember them, but I'm trying. So it's, it's just a big it's I have, I still screw up constantly, but it's, it's all good, you know? Yeah.
Natasha (34:22):
Yes. I love it. And I love that you, you understood like you, you went, Oh, it really doesn't matter. Cause that's where I'm at. I'm like, it really doesn't matter. So how do you balance? I do this for fun. It really makes no difference. It doesn't matter at the end of the day with it's still something I'm really like, cause that's how I see it, but it's still something I'm desperately working for and I desperately want, and I'm definitely committed to. Do you have that kind of balance?
Charlotte (34:49):
It's very difficult to do because if it's just all fun, then you don't have the drive. And if it's all, um, all serious and going then the disappointments, when you screw up becomes so huge. So it's, it's a very, it's, it's something you have to work with yourself with all the time. I feel like, and you have to work on it and just make sure that you, if you do balance it and you do, you do your very best, but when it's enough, it's also enough, you know, you can do it anymore, but it that's, I don't think anyone has ever perfected that, you know, and, and you have to take the good with the bad and I get still super disappointed and yeah. Remember that things happen for a reason and you maybe you don't see the reason right when you're in it, but you will later.
Natasha (35:48):
I so believe that. Absolutely. All right. So, um, those who have had the opportunity to watch you train and compete often comment on your positive attitude and infectious happiness, while in the startup and I've, that's totally come across today. So what is it about, you've mentioned about the horses, um, and making them happy. And what is it that you identified with the horse or the dressage? Like why is it something that you were in ponies when you were a little girl and you're still in horses now, just talk about what horses mean to you and why you ride a little bit.
Charlotte (36:26):
I think it's such a privilege to be out there riding. And I just think that you can really, you can, you can, you really help them. They, you can get so much done together. And I really loved that aspect of it. I've I'll literally sit up there and they, you know, you spur them and then you pull a little bit the rein, but come on, come on, you can do it, you can do it. And then you can just feel them. They're like, I don't want to, you know, and then you just put, you push them and you go, come on, come on, come on. And then all of a sudden they just go and then, and I just feel, it's so satisfying and you get a horse, like Galaxy that when he first came, you know, he had clearly been breeding and breeding and breeding and you didn't really want to go anywhere.
Charlotte (37:08):
And he had never been in a ring and, and he just, wasn't really very motivated. And then to where I took him to the championship show and he just goes, and he does, he went three days in a row, really difficult tests and he just tries his heart heart out. And that's just, I mean, to me, it's just, I'll be forever grateful for those moments to this horse. And you know, I'm making, I'm making him understand that every single day when I get, and I also greet them, you know, when I see them, I go, hi, how are you? And you're so happy to see you. And they, I pet them and they are like, so excited, you know, every day we're doing something they're so excited. And then I try to do like to do every day. And if they don't like something, I just don't do it with them. Like sapling hates trail riding. So I just don't say like, and what they don't and then you just do things for them that they really like. So that every day is a fun day for them. Yep.
Natasha (38:06):
And what is the schedule for a week? Do you work with them four days a week? Six days a week. And are they out in the field or are they on a Walker? What's their general routine?
Charlotte (38:16):
When they're up in Reno, they go, um, they go out in the, on the class every day here. They just planned out an hour every day. And then I work them, um, depending on what they like, like Nintendo likes to be ridden a lot every day. So I try to be on him like an hour and a half every day. Uh, but then I just walk around, you know, and pet him and he loves that. He loves the attention, but the others, they, um, some of them get anxious if they're out too long. So then I try to compress the time. So I really try to get to know each horse. Yeah. So that they're there, that they feel like that you have a good day every day. And when you have the days where things have just not going to happen. And I tried something that worked and then I just finish on that.
Charlotte (39:08):
Yeah. They go back with that sense of having done something, an accomplishment, like galaxy is a good example. He was so tired yesterday. And then I just gave him an easy day. But then, uh, in the end I passed him a little bit and patted him and gave him a lot of sugar. And he went to, he went up to the barn. Oh yeah. You know, I did something and it was just two minutes of riding all together, you know, but he felt so good about himself. So yeah, it was so that's what I try to do every day. And that shows in them.
Natasha (39:46):
Mm. Yep. Okay. So, um, you sold your company at 49 and then got on the Olympic dream and then somewhere along the way you started a new company.
Charlotte (39:59):
Because when I started riing outside in, I got skin cancer. Oh my God. And then I was like, yo, yay. Now I can ride it at 11 in the morning and 10 in the morning riding all day really happy. And then I got skin cancer, six months later. Now the doctor, Oh my God. Now you can't be out in the sun at all. You need to stay in. And I'm like, I was just indoor for 25 years trying to do this. I'm not, I'm not getting indoor. And they're like, and then I tried to find clothing that would work. And it just, wasn't very pretty. But then I, I studied shop rakes and everything. And then, um, I found this fabric, this double wear fabric. That's so cool and neat to wear. And then I started riding in it and then I was like, Oh, I'm sure other people would probably like this too. And then Kastel was started and it's been a great, that's a great company. It's
Natasha (40:59):
Will you a bit more strategic about going, I'm going to start this company because I can see it helps people and I can see there's a need for it. And I really want to do this, but I'm keeping my riding. So I'm going to make sure I hire more people in the thinking part. So I don't need to be as involved.
Charlotte (41:17):
Yes, that was for sure. And I'm not, I promised myself, I wouldn't sit in the office and eight hours a day and work. And so I really, I really did. And that has also been difficult because, um, the company has grown quite as fast as Skagen. And so it's been difficult to pace myself, but I have the best employees now and we have such a good team and I trust him so much. And I feel that in many ways they do a better job than I would ever have been able to. So, um, so it's, I'm very proud of the company. So I would want it to be, have been bigger. You know, I would like it to be bigger, but I'm not willing to put in eight hours a day in the office to make it bigger. So it's, it is what it is. And it's, it's it's super company.
Natasha (42:08):
Yep. And do you feel that pull though, like again, talking about this balance, you go, I want it more successful, but I am aware of what, what that would mean. So no, it's okay. Where it is. And is it that constant Pulll? No. Pull, no. That you have to play.
Charlotte (42:23):
Yes. And then I also, sometimes I find myself getting impatient with the employees. So then I have, fortunately I have this great woman that runs the company. She says to me, yes, Charlotte, we are all fully committed. She did say that to me, it's so hard to all fully committed. So if you want that, you're going to have to hire another person. I'm like, okay, okay. Okay. We won't do it that, and I don't want a big company either. So I didn't get that extra person cause I, I really I'm very happy with the way it is.
Natasha (43:06):
Yeah. Putting those fences in and you keep testing. No, no, no. That's not going to lead to what I actually want, which is my time and my freedom and all that, but it would be cool.
Charlotte (43:16):
No, it's okay. It's fine because it's serving a great purpose and, and it's, it's, you know, it's worked really well with, uh, with all my horse friends and everybody's wearing, it's just, it's just that, it's a good, great conceptually. It's just super cool. Yeah.
Natasha (43:34):
Yes. It is super, super. Does it come to Australia because I know in Australia we do have the sun as well and skin cancer
Charlotte (43:42):
Australia. Yeah. Yeah. So there are somebody that's wearing it over there. It's going pretty well in Australia.
Natasha (43:49):
That's amazing. So, uh, we'll, we'll make sure we get the notes and put it in the show notes for you all. So, um, you guys can get onto that. Awesome. Uh, do you have any sponsors you'd like to mention?
Charlotte (44:03):
Um, no, just my own Kastel, because most of the riders and as amateur so I don't really, nobody sponsors me. Yeah.
Natasha (44:12):
Not a thing. Like we don't, we do have it in Australia, but does that at an international competition? Do you, do you get separated from the professionals?
Charlotte (44:22):
No. No, because I like, cause I am an amateur. I don't, I don't, I don't make any money. So I just feel like I want to keep that status because it does.
Natasha (44:36):
It's such a shining inspiration for everyone going off out amateur domains, X, whatever it makes it mean in their head. And it goes, Oh, it just means Olympian. That's what it means. I love it. I love, I think you're inspiring people all over the world and being a rockstar about it.
Charlotte (44:53):
I hope so. I really try. And, and uh, and I think there are so many great people in, in this industry that it, it it's really, that has been probably the most amazing thing for me is the, the reach and the friendships and the, all of that. So if I never get to the Olympics, I'm actually very happy with how everything has panned out because people give you time. Yeah. It's, it's just an amazing and the horses and I think it's an, has been an amazing venture and news and, and I, I wouldn't trade it in for anything even not for the Olympics or anything. I just think people are so wonderful.
Natasha (45:33):
Oh, that's amazing. Awesome. Sorry. Um, where can people find you on social media, if they want to watch your journey and see you rock it out next year in 2021?
Charlotte (45:42):
I think on my Facebook, I have an athlete's page, Charlotte Jorst, and then I'm also on Instagram and I am actually active so they can really follow and get to know all the horses and, uh, and my, all my kids and everything.
Natasha (45:57):
Yeah. Beautiful. Beautiful. Excellent. Is there anything else you'd like to share with everyone?
Charlotte (46:03):
No, I think we've covered everything you have been so incredibly great. Like a shining light yourself.
Natasha (46:13):
All right. Well, thank you so much for your time. I'm sure everyone is buzzing after this podcast and can't wait to go ride and can't wait to go to their own Olympics. And, um, I really appreciate you taking the time.
Charlotte (46:22):
Thanks again.
Natasha (46:31):
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