Gestüt Vorwerk, Venerable German Stud, to be Sold to Austrian Olympian Sissy Max-Theurer

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Gestüt Vorwerk. Photo: Werner Ernst
Gestüt Vorwerk. Photo: Werner Ernst

CAPPELN, Germany, May. 14–Gestüt Vorwerk, one of the oldest and most famous breeding farms in Germany, is being sold to Austrian Olympic gold medal dressage rider Sissy Max-Theurer.

Gestüt Vorwerk, owned and operated as a private stud by the same family since 1875, has been home to some of the world’s top stallions competed on the stud’s behalf by some of the elite riders, including the USA’s Lisa Wilcox, who now is based in Wellington, Florida, and Nicole Uphoff.relevant-col2

Sissy Max-Theurer, from a wealthy family, established her international reputation as a rider by winning gold at the 1980 Olympics aboard Mon Cherie. She also has become an accomplished breeder of horses. Her trainer was her husband, Hans, who also trains their daughter, Victoria, who has competed in the Olympics for Austria.

Gudula Vorwerk-Happ, the current owner and great grand-daughter of the stud’s founder, said:: “For some time now we have been asking ourselves what was to become of Gestüt Vorwerk when we are no  longer there because we do not have any heirs. When we heard that Sissy Max-Theurer was looking for a facility for her broodmares, we asked if she wouldn’t be interested in our Gestüt.

“For more than 30 years, there has been lively contact between us – after all, Sissy Max-Theurer’s successful horse, Mon Cherie, was by More Magic xx, a Thoroughbred stallion that bred at our station. And Augustin OLD, a horse she bred herself and with which her daughter, Victoria, won the Nürnberg Burg Pokal, has a Rohdiamant dam, just to name two examples.”

efe-vorwerk-2top1Sissy Max-Theurer, added, “I had been looking for quite a while for a place in southern Oldenburg for my broodmares, which are presently boarded at different places, so that I could keep them all together. It’s wonderful that I was given such a great opportunity to buy this beautiful facility in Cappeln with its rich tradition, even if the Gestüt is a bit large for the plans I have in mind. My horses will find the best conditions in Cappeln and I am particularly interested in preserving the facility’s traditional charm. We’re working on a plan for optimal utilization.”

Furioso II, an Anglo-Norman bought in France by Georg Vorwerk, Gudula’s father, in 1968, was one of the stud’s most famous stallions, influencing warmblood breeding throughout Germany.

Current breeding stallions include Rubinbstein, Rohdiamant, Don Gregory and Friedensfürst.efe-vorwerk-31

Lisa Wilcox was ranked one of the world’s top dressage riders competing on the Gestüt Vorwerk stallion Relevant, which still stands at stud in Cappeln.

In addition to several stallion of the year honors in Germany, Relevant was ridden by Wilcox to team silver for the United States and fifth place individually at the 2002 World Equestrian Games in Jerez, Spain, individual silver at the open European Championships at Hickstead, Great Britain, the same year and team bronze for the USA at the 2004 Olympics in Athens.

Victoria Max-Theurer at the 2008 Olympic Games. © 2008 Ken Braddick
Victoria Max-Theurer at the 2008 Olympic Games. © 2008 Ken Braddick