Talent plus perseverance
The thing I've really come to realize from watching "reality shows" on television is that "success" is about talent plus perseverance. The show in particular that really hit home for me is Project Runway, and the main person that makes me think this way is a guy named Rami (I may not have his name spelled right).
He was one of the contestants from the 2007 version of the show (Season 4), and I was very impressed with both his talent and his perseverance. He actually didn't "win", but I thought his work at the end was the best, and he made a lot of nice adjustments throughout the show.
I see this too in some sporting events. A lot of times the winner is less than 1% better than the next-best person, or other times it's just some combination of fighting and good luck. Kirk Gibson is famous in baseball for hitting a home run in a World Series game, but did you know he came within less than an inch of striking out in that very same at-bat? He looked horrible in that at-bat up until the moment he hit the home run.
Finally, this point is also driven home nicely in the movie Rocky Balboa. In it the Rocky character says:
"It's not how hard you can hit. It's how hard you can get hit and still keep going, keep moving forward."