By Jo de Roo
Photography: Jo de Roo
In August 2023, Zangersheide breeder Jean Lefort pulled a remarkable stunt during the Open Belgian Breeding Championship in Gesves – uniquely finishing in the top five with three foals. So who is the breeder behind the successful ‘du Mas d’Eole’ studfarm? Read on....
First, however, we should name his Z-registered foals: Cody du Mas d’Eole Z; O Malley du Mas d’Eole Z; and Bohème du Mas d’Eole Z ranked respectively first, second and fifth in the series for ‘showjumping foals’. Lefort is also known as the breeder of several international showjumpers and approved stallions, including Tresor du Mas d’Eole Z (2018: Toulon - Chrystal-Queen Z x Calvaro Z), who was accepted for breeding last year during the spring stallion selection of Studbook Zangersheide.
Jean Lefort (°1956), married to Marie-Anne Doffagne, lives in Lesve, in the province of Namur (Belgium). He was a professional technician and is now fully enjoying his retirement: “I have not yet been honoured by a studbook, but I have won several prizes with various breeding products. This was the case, for example, when my filly Belle du Mas d’Eole Z (Burberry DK Z) was laurelled as the best female showjumping foal and winner of the general championship for showjumping and dressage foals in Libramont last year.”
Jean Lefort literally and figuratively took his first steps in the horse world with a walking horse. “My walking horse was a young mare. She had a trotter as sire and a Polish mare as dam. She was broken-in by Michel Coulon. If I wanted to start her in a competition on Saturday, I had to ride her daily during the previous days. She had a lot of blood. At a certain point I bought a house and I could no longer combine horse riding with my professional job. I then decided to breed a foal out of my mare and used my neighbour’s stallion. This stallion wasn’t even approved in a studbook, so I was a real amateur. I sold the foal that was born from this combination to England at the age of three. I’m talking about 40 years ago. I still breed with dams from this lineage, including Cadix du Mas d’Eole Z. I also breed with the Fadonja lineage.”
Fadonja is a 1987 daughter of Jasper out of Tadonja. Lefort: “I bought her purely for breeding purposes in 1998. She had good conformation and almost unlimited scope. She even once jumped out of my closed paddock which was finished with a wire at a height of 1m80. She was a valuable dam, and four of her offspring have jumped internationally: Laranco (Garanco), Carryduff Z (Caretano Z), Canvas Z (Clinton) and Damezele D (Clinton)... To read the complete article you need to be a subscriber
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