Re: How can an unwealthy person become a famous rider?
Work, work and more work. My parents are not horsey and we can afford good horses and competition fees etc but this makes no difference if you are not commited and willing to work hard at it. When you are old enough you should look for a job as a working pupil at a yard and be prepared to put in the hours and learn a lot. This is what I did. I went abroad to Canada for a year where I was really lucky to find a job on an A-circuit competition yard but I started off there just mucking out, cleaning tack and sweeping to prove I was serious before they let me ride any of the more "serious" horses. I started riding the young horses and off the track thoroughbreds and "problem" horses no-one else wanted to sit on. By doing this I learned so much in a very short space of time. I worked seven days a week from 8am until 8pm, later on show days or if I was teaching (I'm not joking, it was long hours !!!) ... but it was so worth it. In the end I was able to ride anything and got to ride some top horses on the A-cicuit. An amazing experience.
When I came back to the UK I got a job no problem based on my experience, at an eventing yard and had some more incredible experiences there too. But what I did throughout these jobs was just keep my head down, prove myself and work really hard. If you expect to just step to the top without putting in the hours then you'll never succeed. I work as a freelance coach now and am schooling my own horses to compete in BSJA showjumping next year (they're very young still) and I'm very patient and realistic about eventually becoming a proffessional rider.
What you can be doing right now is riding your pony every day, getting the help of an instructor regularly to prevent bad habit and help out at the yard as much as possible, being prepared to do anything, even just making cups of tea and sweeping or whatever !!! Maybe find out of someone needs help excercising their pony (if you're confident) or is they need help with chores. You could find a Saturday job at a riding school but be prepared to just volunteer and do whatever needs to be done, you never know what oppurtunities can come up !!! The pony club is a great organisation to involved in and you can make a lot of friends and contacts through this which will be useful later. You can learn so much at the Pony Club and it is not expensive at all. Most top, successful, competitive riders started in the Pony Club !!! You never stop learning, watch other people who are more experienced riding, help anyone you can and learn from them and read everything about horses and riding that you can.
If you are dedicated and passionate you will succeed, you don't need money for this. Good luck !!!