It was a spectacular Sunday afternoon in the Hap Hansen Arena at LA Equestrian Center as 29 horse and rider pairs tackled a technical and demanding 1.50m track designed by Guilherme Jorge of Brazil.
Olympic Gold Medalist Will Simpson and Chacco P were victorious in the $100,000 Riders Cup Grand Prix, receiving the Judy Martin Perpetual Trophy. In second place was Cassio Rivetti and Go Eldor, and in third place was Matt Archer aboard Luigi VD Bisschop.
“I’ve been working with this horse for three years, and this win is very gratifying. He’s so brave and so athletic that I just try to hang on and remember the course,” Simpson said. “It was a great day for me, and it also was my daughter, Sophie Leckie’s first Mother’s Day. I’m proud to be a new grandfather.”
“Hap Hansen is one of my favorite riders and one of my favorite people in the world. To have this ring dedicated to him is a big honor,” Simpson added.
Jorge was equally pleased with how the pair navigated his course. “Today, I was very happy,” he said. “I think eight riders in the jump-off makes for a really good jump-off and an exciting first round. Chacco P is 18 hands and has a lot of scope. His turn to the double showed the tremendous scope that the horse has. Will was very efficient in the turns and proved unbeatable.”
“Seeing Will Simpson win the first Riders Cup here in Los Angeles was pretty exciting,” commented West Palms CEO Dale Harvey. “It was amazing just to see it all come together. I am really looking forward to hosting Riders Cup in October at LA Equestrian Center. We learned so much from doing this one and we can’t wait to improve even more.”