A relatively recent creation, Esprit was first released in 2010 in conjunction with that year's World Equestrian Games, which were being held in the United States for the first time. He is item #9101, and was technically a regular run for 2010 only (as far as I know).
Okay, I know this guy doesn't have the best conformation. And looks weird from certain angles. Here's one in particular that makes me cringe:
That particular photo is at least partly a bad Photoshop job (I hope), but all the same, I try to arrange mine so I don't usually see them from that angle.
That said, I still really like the Esprit mold, despite his weirdness. Why? I'm not sure. I definitely like his flowing tail. I think I'd like his mane better if it was attached to his neck - I'm guessing it's the way it is so he could theoretically have different mane options, though we've never seen him with an alternate mane. I believe part of Breyer's description of the model was that it was supposed to be a representation of the "equine spirit" (which I can definitely get behind) and not necessarily a real horse per se. But the mold has been used as a portrait model at least once since 2010, so...YOLO, I guess.
And despite his oddness, he's been quite popular since his release, and has been used in quite a few limited releases; his appearance as last year's Breyerfest surprise model seemed like a foregone conclusion almost from the start.
An issue I remember people running into with the original Esprit release was weird undappled squares on the model's back and belly, suggesting that they had been clamped into something to paint the dapples, which prevented the dapples from being painted onto the clamped areas. This eventually was fixed sometime before the end of the year; mine has the squares, but I'm pretty sure later ones don't. It doesn't bother me too much, as it's just one of those things you don't really notice unless you're looking for it.
In any case, the Esprits are a welcome addition to my collection. Pecos, in particular, is quite nice; I suppose that goes back to the "mystical white horse" thing. See also: Novelisto D. I look forward to seeing what Breyer does with this mold in the future! (Hopefully not something like Mu Wen Ma; I still wonder what the Chinese painters thought of that one.)