Flore Giraud is clearing ever more hurdles on her way to the pinnacle of show-jumping success. In a sport which is currently regaining popularity throughout the globe, Flore is jumping leaps and bounds on her way to peak performance.
“To nurture a relationship with horses requires sensitivity. They give you so much, you really have to build an instinctive relationship and that takes years of dedication. Of course, they sense how important it is when the Big Day comes. They are away from their home, they feel the crowd. Above all they sense your adrenaline. After all, you are demanding incredible achievements from them. You don’t get that without putting in the effort.”
“I rode horses before I was even born!” jokes the young woman, whose passion for horse riding was passed on to her by her mother. “When I was little, you couldn’t get me out of the stables. I rode horses, I looked after the animals, I cleaned out the stalls... I would have slept there if I’d been allowed to! I got my first pony, a Shetland, at the age of just four and I started competing aged eight.” The equestrian world has since become her favourite arena after a string of successes at national and international Grand Prix, including Knokke, Equitalyon, Wellington in Florida and the Longines Masters Paris 2019.
Flore works at the estate Haras de Lécaude, located near Deauville in Normandy (France). The facilities are state of the art, equipped with an all-season riding arena, galop apparatus and spa. Horses, “the true athletes” as Flore insists, deserve only the best, with massages to ease their much in demand muscles. “It’s exactly the same as Formula 1. Edward Levy and I are the two riders at the Haras but all the staff around us make up the team, just like the technicians you find in the pits.” Mental attitude is 90% of the sport and Flore has her own mental coach. “It quickly becomes a virtuous circle of winning, positive attitude and how to cope with any down phases.”
When Flore met Amanda Mille, the pair immediately hit it off. They share the same vision of the role of women in international sport. “It’s almost unique to compete in a sport where we are on a level footing with men. I was also struck by the brand’s commitment and its attention to detail. Our performance lasts one minute, but that minute requires many years of preparation. Every hundredth of a second counts. I love the incredible precision required for perfection.” Flore wears her RM 07-01 model in Carbon TPT® for competitions and she particularly likes its extreme lightness and the comfort of its curves. The young Frenchwoman is obviously champing at the bit to take on future challenges. And make no mistake – Flore is fully intent on overcoming all obstacles that stand in her way!