Small, mighty and standing at just over 15 hands, the Selle Francais mare Myself de Breve is jumping clear rounds and making a comeback this season with French rider Marie Hecart.
On a quiet, sun baked Friday morning in Wellington, Florida, Myself de Breve coasted over a 1.40m course on the grass Stadium Derby field at WEF’s Equestrian Village venue. It’s been just under two years since the 17-year-old mare (Quidam de Revel x Arpege de Coudre) last competed in Wellington, but you wouldn’t know it from watching the easy partnership between horse and rider, and the cool confidence with which they approach every fence.
Hecart has been riding Myself de Breve since the mare was just four years old. Together, they’ve competed around the world, but their most memorable win was victory in the 2015 $372,000 FEI World Cup Grand Prix CSI5*-W at WEF. With her diminutive size, Myself De Breve is almost pony-like, and she quickly became a popular, and appreciated mount wherever she went.
But a 2016 injury kept Myself on the sidelines for a year. “She restarted showing in [June] 2016 but I have been really careful to bring her back slowly, this is why she didn’t show much,” says Hecart..
Many years of experience together allows Hecart to know just what her teammate needs, and this season, easing Myself de Breve back into work is going according to plan.
“She jumped a few small classes this year, and enjoys jumping on the grass!” Hecart says. “My goal with Myself is to keep her sound, happy and she is the one who will tell me what she wants to do.
“She is a fighter and extremely brave and careful, and at the same time there is nothing that scares her. She is really confident that she can jump any course.”
Talent runs in the family for Marie; her father Michel Hecart is one of France’s most successful riders, and her half sister Adelinde Hecart has made a name for herself in competition in Europe. Marie started her own equine training and sales business in 2010, and splits her time between Europe and the USA, competing and training riders.
In addition to Myself de Breve, Hecart has an up and coming star in her stable, the 10-year-old Cenwood Delle Lame. She is aiming the KWPN gelding (Emilion x Riverman) towards the CSI5* level, and looking towards the future.
Whether it’s via a comeback or a new top partner, Hecart remains dedicated to success with her top horses.