Young horses: passion and future
“I focus on doing a good job, on making my horses grow at best, on having fun with them” Max Kuehner’s philosophy…
Max Kuehner participated in the European Championships of Aachen in 2015 riding Coer de Lion. In 2015 he won the CSI Grand Prix of Salzburg with Cornet Kalua, third in the CSI Grand Prix of Spangenberg with Chardonnay and the CSI Grand Prix of Ebreichsdorf with Cornet Kalua. He was fourth in the CSI Grand Prix of Roeser with Chardonnay and in the CSIO Nations Cup of Budapest, and he has achieved other victories and excellent placements in CSI and CSIO competitions. Always well placed in international categories reserved for young horses.
"Riding for Austria allows me to always be in the leading team at the top international events - explains Kuehner - due to the fewer competition. This is more satisfying and motivating, given the strong commitment that my dual activity requires from me."
Indeed, one can hardly say that Kuehner has a boring life: "I get up early in the morning and I am already in the saddle at 5 am - he explains. At 9 am I'm already at the office and I work until 7 or 8 pm, when I finally go home. In order to manage all that, I make use of a good organization.
At the stables we have around thirty horses and even a small farm. Ten people work and ride horses under the leadership of Helmut Schoenstetter, who leads young horses in competitions.
Some horses are ours, others are entrusted to me by other breeders who cannot afford to pay the costs of maintenance and competitions. So I take care of them, I ride them in competitions while the breeders manage the sale of the seed. This way, we can give a good sporting career to breeding stallions. I can get organized well when travelling for the competitions, also thanks to the organization of the team and to the support my excellent employees at the company, taking into account that today's technology allows me to be anywhere and still do my job. My main goal is to advance the young horses, which we choose between three and five years of age, either those that are born at home, or those we buy for the national or international show jumping competitions. This is what I care about the most, I do not care to climb the ranking list, I focus on doing a good job, on making my horses grow at best, on having fun with them. In training we follow a slow progression, we work without rush and inspired by what the horses show us. Our horses live outdoors as much as possible, in the paddock, they gallop in the track, they walk in the woods around the stable. Some stay with me for the highest levels, others are sold. We do not sell them just for the sake of it, we want to create the right pairs, to match horse and rider on the basis of their characteristics. That's what interests us most, the satisfaction of seeing our horses well-mounted and happy riders. "
Among other things, Max Kuehner has the support of his beautiful wife Dane Liv, a Grand Prix dressage rider and an excellent trainer of young horses whom she regularly rides to give them the right foundation on flat level, fundamental for show jumping. Max and Dane have two beautiful daughters, Jolie Marie and Grace, who follow their parents to competitions, and therefore they are always surrounded by horses: "We have a happy life - Max says, smiling. Also our daughters have fun when they follow us to the competitions. My wife has a very good career in dressage and shares with me every moment of my career in show jumping. She is a great support. I hope our girls will continue to have fun and love the horses, and then continue in this sport. We will see, however, it's up to them. I hope to give them what I had, the experience of great masters such as Franke Sloothaak and Ludger Beerbaum were for me, I will do everything I can to ensure that this world is as good for them as it is for us now. For the moment, they are on the right path. What matters most to me is the passion, the true love of horses; no matter what level you can reach, what counts are the emotions that horses give us, the teachings, the wealth they bring into our lives, and that I hope to pass this on to my daughters. Our sport is our life, and, like life, it is full of ups and downs. We have to be strong when we are down and through the tough times, in order to try to live happily, learn to appreciate what we have, and do everything to keep it, fighting every day to not let anything ruin it...".