When Katie Cocquyt was a child in Orange County, California, she would gaze up into the night sky and recite "Star light, star bright . . ." and wish for a horse. Years later, during her second year of marriage, her husband surprised her with the gift she had always wished for. Katie named the horse Mardi Gras, and says of it, "She is still one of the closest friends that I have."
After completing her studies for a bachelor's degree in English literature from Cal State Long Beach, Cocquyt worked as an editor at MI Publishing. However, her passion for horses soon led her to Silver Fox Racing Stables in Santa Anita, California, where she could work with horses full-time. There she says she developed many special friendships, "both human and equine." Today, she divides her time between writing and researching her literary projects, working at the track, and touring the country speaking to schoolchildren about her books.
In Little Freddie at the Kentucky Derby and Little Freddie's Legacy, Cocquyt combines her love of literature and of horses to create a stories about horses that inspire children to face their own challenges in life. Although the real Little Freddie never won the Kentucky Derby, the author's fond memories of raising him helped her write this inspirational story about having the courage to make your dreams come true. Through Freddie and his daughter Baroness, she shows that with strong desire, hard work, and friendship even the loftiest dreams can be attained. The fictional Little Freddie is a horse that wins not because he is necessarily better than the others, but because he is motivated by great confidence and inner strength.
Cocquyt resides in Simi Valley, California, where she works with race and show horses. She and her husband began breeding Thoroughbred horses in 1986, with the birth of Rue Royale (the real Little Freddie) who passed away in 1993. She is a member of the Thoroughbred Breeders Association, and is licensed by the California and Arizona state racing commissions. She is also a free-lance writer and journalist.
Many of the characters in the Little Freddie series, including Little Freddie and Romantic Myth, lived on her farm, where her love for horses prevails. She still considers it "a tremendously fulfilling experience to be involved with these majestic creatures."