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Federation Equestre Internationale News

3 April



Ulla Sallzgeber and her horse Rusty won a record-breaking World Cup Final in Göteborg, Sweden on March 30. The Grand Prix in the Scandinavium Sports arena was attended by an audience of almost 5.000, while the B-final for the lower placed participants by a crowd of 9.000. The final was sold out with 11.034 tickets sold. It is the first time that a Dressage World Cup Final is attended by over 25.000 spectators. Eighteen riders from seven nations, - another record number - competed for prizes 200.000,-- Swiss Francs, including a high-end Volvo XC 90 for the winner.

For the first time the World Cup was divided in an A- and a B-final. Eighteen riders competed in the Grand Prix, won by Salzgeber/Rusty with a 77,40 % score in front of Debbie McDonald from the United States with Brentina, 72,28 % and Isabell Werth with Anthony from Germany, 71,60 %. Twelve riders went on to compete in the Kür to Music for the A-final, six riders competed in the B-final. The A-final included four riders from Germany, three from the USA, and one rider each from Switzerland, Great Britain, Russia, Sweden and the Netherlands. For the first time in World Cup history the judges’ panel of five consisted of different judges in the Grand Prix, the B-final and the A-final.

The A-final started from zero, the result of the previous Grand Prix being taken into consideration only to decide the starting order. The President of the judges in the A-final was Vincenzo Truppa from Italy. His comment during the press conference afterwards: ‘ Ulla Salzgeber was a straightforward winner today. All of us had her in first place ‘. The winner, who was second during the World Championships in September 2002, commented that her horse had recovered very well from a minor illness which had prevented him to be in top form last year. ‘ Today my horse performed without mistakes, as a result of a successful preparation period without any interference”, Ulla Salzgeber said. Second in the final, for a prize money of 20.000,-- Swiss Francs, was Debbie McDonald. With Günter Seidel and George Williams for the USA on place four and six, this was the biggest success ever for American dressage. American judge Linda Zang commented: ‘ on the basis of our success we would like to bring the 2005 final of the World Cup Dressage to the United States’.

Complete results on


Ull Salzgeber undisputed World No 1

With an increased number of points (80.338 pts), the World Cup Champion Ulla Salzgeber (GER) is the undisputed leader of the FEI/BCM World Dressage Rankings.

1996 Olympic champion and 1998 World champion Isabell Werth (GER) went up four places from 10th to 6th rank with 74.972 points.

Rafael Soto Andrade is the second Spanish rider to enter the Top Ten after Beatriz Ferrer Salat. He didn’t improve his points but took advantage of Lars Petersen’s (DEN) lowered score of 73.933, which kicked him off the Top Ten (from 8th to 13th place).

Complete rankings on the FEI website section consult/results/dressage



42 riders from 16 countries have qualified to compete at the World Cup Final to be held from 16 to 20 April in Las Vegas, NV (USA).

The best riders of the world qualified from 12 leagues over the past year. USA with 14 and Germany with 10 have the greatest numbers of competitors.

WESTERN EUROPE - 20 qualified

BEL Ludo Philippaerts
BRA Rodrigo Pessoa
DEN Thomas Velin
FRA Edouard Couperie
GBR Robert Smith
GER Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum
GER Lars Nieberg
GER Markus Ehning
GER Ludger Beerbaum
GER Markus Merschformann
GER Toni Hassmann
GER Christian Ahlmann
GER Otto Becker
GER Sören von Rönen
GER Franke Sloothaak
IRL Trevor Coyle
NED Gerco Schröder
NED Jan Tops
NED Eric van der Vleuten
SUI Markus Fuchs

USA-EAST COAST - 8 qualified

USA Beezie Madden-Patton
USA Candice King
USA Laura Kraut
USA Lauren Hough
USA Leslie Howard
USA Margie Goldstein-Engle
USA McLain Ward
USA Norman dello Joio

USA-WEST COAST - 4 qualified

USA John French
USA Nicole Shahinian-Simpson
USA Richard Spooner
USA Will Simpson

CANADA - 2 qualified

CAN Karen Cudmore
CAN Melissa Brown

CENTRAL EUROPE- 4 qualified

CZE Petr Dolezal
CZE Ales Opatrny
POL Grzegorz Kubiak
USA Robert Chelberg

AUSTRALIA - 1 to come

AUS Anthony Thomas

NEW ZEALAND - 1 qualified

NZL Molly Savill

JAPAN - 1 qualified

JPN Ryuma Hirota

WILD CARD - 1 qualified

USA Peter Wylde


Good progression of the US riders

A few weeks before the World Cup Final, the American riders are well represented in the Top 20 of the rankings with McLain Ward at the 12th place (last month 17th), Beezie Madden Patton 13th (previous rank 23), and Leslie Howard 17th.

Germany dominates the Top 10 with 6 riders, including of course World No 1 Ludger Beerbaum who is leading the rankings with 3546 points.

The Swiss Marcus Fuchs, 2nd of the rankings, has greatly improved his score (2859 compared to 2577 last month) thanks to the 200 points earned in Göteborg, where he won the World Cup, and the 75 pts gained in ‘s-Hertogenbosh.

Significant progression of Robert Smith (GBR), who is now 11th (he was 19th last month). Smith earned 115 pts in Göteborg, 165 in ‘s-Hertogenbosch, where he won the Grand Prix and finished second in the World Cup and about 50 pts in Dortmund. He just earned his ticket to teh Las Vegas World Cup Final by finishing 18th of the Western European standings.


Freund renews World Cup Champion title in Göteborg

Germany’s Michael Freund has renewed his World Cup title in the crowded Scandinavium arena in Göteborg. After four wins, the World Champion of 1994 was already certain of his victory, but he was of course keen on winning all five events. But his fellow countryman Christoph Sandmann claimed the first place in the last competition.

Australia’s Boyd Exell finished 2rd in Göteborg and became the vice-World Cup Champion of this season, ahead of Christoph Sandmann and Mark Weusthof.

The Australian driver Boyd Exell set a fast time (83.00 seconds), but knocked down two cones and lost his chances for the victory. Michael Freund, the unbeaten winner of this season, was last to go and gave everything to beat Sandmann’s time (85.50). He came very close to winning his fifth competition as well, but a knocked down ball prevented that.

Christoph Sandmann proved to be strong already during the warm up competition where he ended on the second place. The silver medal winner of Jerez de la Frontera started the competition before Freund and was the only driver who managed to drive a clear and fast course.

Wild card driver Fredrik Persson drove a fantastic round but had fifteen penalty points added to his time. His popular fellow countryman Tomas Eriksson was first to go but the enthusiastic crowd made such an impression on the double World Champion that he drove a wrong course and was eliminated. He ended on the fifth place of the final standings.


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