Simpson Earns First West Coast Spot at World Cup Final

With a third place finish at the $75,000 Ultimate Equine Grand Prix, Nicole Simpson has secured a spot as one of 12 American riders to compete in the 2005 FEI World Cup Show Jumping Final.

March 10, 2005 — When the world’s most talented show jumpers converge on Las Vegas, April 20-24, Nicole Simpson, of Thousand Oaks, Calif., will be among them. Following her third-place performance on El Campeon’s So Long at the $75,000 Ultimate Equine Grand Prix in Indio, Calif., Feb. 27, Simpson’s ticket to the 2005 FEI World Cup Show Jumping Final has essentially been purchased.

Leading a group of more than 30 equestrian hopefuls in the West Coast League, Simpson now has 87 World Cup qualifying points. This late in the game, with only one qualifier left for the West Coast League, it will be impossible for another rider to surpass Simpson’s score, meaning Simpson has secured a spot as one of 12 American riders to compete in the World Cup Final.

Another close contender, coming in with 75 qualifying points, Joie Gatlin of San Juan Capistrano, Calif., will likely join Simpson at the final. Winning the $75,000 Ultimate Equine Grand Prix on SunCal’s King, Gatlin was the only rider to jump a double-clear round, adding 20 points to her overall qualifying score. An even 10 points behind Gatlin in the West Coast rankings are Gabriella Salick of Thousand Oaks, and Richard Spooner of Burbanks, Calif., who share third place.

The final qualifier for the West Coast League is March 13, at the Desert Circuit VI, after which the top three point-holders and one wild card rider from the West Coast will be selected to represent the United States Equestrian Federation (USEF). They’ll join the top seven competitors and one wild card rider from the East Coast League at the World Cup Final. Nancy Jaffer will report on the final qualifier in an EquiSearch postcard on March 14.

For the latest in the East and West Coast League leader boards, visit the USEF’s Show Jumping page. Rankings are updated regularly under the World Cup heading.

Top Finishers at the $75,000 Ultimate Equine Grand Prix

*World Cup Rider

**East Coast World Cup Rider

Rider, Country, Horse, Faults, Time (if applicable), World Cup Qualifying Points (if applicable)

1. *Joie Gatlin, USA, SunCal’s King, 0-0 faults, 40.91 seconds, 20 points

2. *Rich Fellers, USA, McGuinness, 0-4 faults, 37.55 seconds, 17 points

3. *Nicole Shahinian-Simpson, USA, El Campeon’s So Long, 0-4 faults, 38.81 seconds, 15 points

4. *Gabriella Salick, USA, Sandstone Laurin, 0-4 faults, 38.96 seconds, 13 points

5. *Richard Spooner, USA, Millenium, 0-4 faults, 41.40 seconds

6. *Duncan McFarlane, NZL, Eezy, 0-12 faults, 41.34 seconds, 12 points

7. Richard Spooner, USA, Robinson, 0-Elim.

8. *Mandy Porter, USA, Summer, 4 faults, 11 points

Kim Farlinger, CAN, Del Destino, 4 faults

*Michael Endicott, USA, Surrey, 4 faults, 11 points

John Pearce, CAN, Champagne, 4 faults

12. *Molly Talla, USA, Camaron Hills Shanroe, 8 faults, 6 points

*Mark Watring, PUR, Sapphire, 8 faults, 6 points

Paul Rohrbach, USA, Shiraz, 8 faults

*Mandy Goosen, GBR, Contendor, 8 faults, 6 points

**Laura Linback, USA, Grand Soso 2, 8 faults, 0 points

*Richard Spooner, USA, Hilton Flight, 8 faults, 6 points

**Tracy Fenney, USA, Grace, 8 faults, 0 points

*Hap Hansen, USA, His Horse, 8 faults, 6 points

*Jennifer Crooks, USA, Rupert, 10 faults, 2 points

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