Six-times Olympian Kyra Kyrklund of Finland has retired her current top horse Max from international competition.
Kyra finished seventh at Windsor Europeans (25-29 August) with the 14-year-old Swedish warmblood gelding by Master, who belongs to Yvette Conn. He contested 35 internationals in his career, being placed in 33 of them.
“I like happy endings,” said Kyra. “Max has been one of my most consistent and honest horses. He has been competing at top-level international grand prix for the past six years. He is a true gentleman who always tries his best.
“I felt this was the right moment. It was a big decision and in my heart I felt sad that he was entering the international arena for the last time [at Windsor], but I knew it is the right thing to do. He has given us all so much more than we ever hoped for.
“I consider Max to be a perfect ambassador for dressage. He loves an audience so I now look forward to take him to lecture demos and gala performances.”
Kyra, who has competed at top level for 25 years, will continue to ride Max at home.
“I am not planning to retire myself quite yet,” she added. “I have a few interesting grand prix prospects at home.”
Yvette said: “I have watched Max in his daily training since he was four years old. Together with Kyra and Richard [White, Kyra’s husband and trainer] I have had so many wonderful experiences all over the world. I have reached heights in dressage that I never dreamt possible as an owner. Two World Cup Finals, three European Championships, the World Equestrian Games and the Olympics — it doesn’t get better than that.”