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Caz: And off she goes

With a confidence and grace that belies her age, Ms. Krebs keeps her eye on the prize, the Olympic gold.

"That's my goal. I know everyone says that, but they get sidetracked," she said. "I'm so young to know what I want to do. It may be na ve of me - a tall glass of water to drink -- that's what people say. I know it's a lot of work"

Unafraid of work, Krebs has done everything involved with horses. She knows her way around a stall and which end of the shovel to hold.

"Riding horses and working with them has given me a lot of responsibility," she said. "I feel like I've grown up fast but that's just the way it's going. I can't sit on the couch and wait for people to catch up with me."

She is gunning for the Olympics and the gold, but she also has another passion.

"I'm very inspired by art," she said. "I love to sculpt and paint. If I fall and break my leg and can't ride anymore, I'll always have my art."

She told of a project in art class where she had to sculpt something with clay. She chose to sculpt a horse.

"I know all the muscle groups. People said, 'that's amazing, how'd you do it?' It's kind of what I know."

Since before school age, Krebs knew she wanted to ride. She begged her mother for lessons for years before getting them on her ninth birthday. She would spend her weekends at the Cazenovia Equestrian Center and as she became older she would work for her riding.

"Anything that's good doesn't come easy," she said. "You have to work to get or do anything. If you don't work, what'll you do? That's called retirement."

Certainly too young to retire, Krebs has even considered her post-Olympic life. She said she might open an equestrian boarding school where kids can ride while getting their education. But first, she must deal with this year-of-a-lifetime.

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