DEL MAR, CA — The 67th Del Mar National Horse Show came to an exciting conclusion during Hunter-Jumper Week with 2012 Rolex/FEI Show Jumping World Cup Champion Rich Fellers taking three wins. Riding his superstar stallion, Flexible, Fellers won both the $50,000 Surfside Grand Prix presented by Showbiz Magazine on Friday night, May 4, and the $100,000 Hermès Grand Prix of Del Mar presented by Intuit on Saturday night, May 5.
Making it a sweep, Fellers took to the wheel and won the hugely popular $5,000 Villas at Rancho Valencia Celebrity Ride & Drive prior to winning the Grand Prix at the Del Mar National Horse Show! This is the third running of the Ride & Drive and the first celebrity event. While Fellers’ pockets were bulging with prize money this week, the $2,500 he won for the Ride & Drive is closest to his heart. Fellers’ late sister was an avid supporter of the Special Olympics in their home state of Oregon and he donated the money in her honor.
The Ride and Drive paired 10 celebrity drivers with 10 equestrians. Second place went to pink-pajama-clad Karl Cook and television host, Melissa Rivers. Eduardo Menezes and television host Zeji Ozri came in third, ahead of Sophie Simpson riding in tandem with her dad Will Simpson, a celebrated Grand Prix rider himself. Fifth place went to rider Destry Spielberg and her mom, actress Kate Capshaw. Dad, (Stephen Spielberg) acted as back-seat driver and videographer (of course)! Rider Duncan McFarlane was serenaded to a sixth-place finish by Juice Newton, while seventh went to Jason McArdle and Del Mar Fairgrounds General Manager Tim Fennell. Not accustomed to eighth place, equestrian Guy Thomas had an achy breaky heart along with partner, Billy Ray Cyrus. Paris Sellon and television director Jimmy Burrows claimed ninth place and tenth went to rider Francie Steinwedell-Carvin and her sister, actress Nicole Steinwedell.
The 67th annual horse show opened with Western Week April 19 through 22, followed by Dressage Week April 26 through 29, then closed with Hunter Jumper week.. Ticket sales and attendance records were set this year, with the $100,000 Hermès Grand Prix of Del Mar taking place in front of a sell-out, standing- room-only crowd.
The 22nd District Agricultural Association is a State of California agency that owns and operates the Del Mar Fairgrounds, Surfside Race Place, Horsepark Equestrian Center and the Del Mar Golf Center. The 22nd DAA produces five events each year: The San Diego County Fair, the Del Mar National Horse Show, Professional Bull Riding (PBR), The Scream Zone and Holiday of Lights. The Fairgrounds hosts more than 350 events annually, the largest of which is the live horse racing meet each summer, which is operated by the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club for the 22nd DAA and the State of California. No taxpayer dollars are used to run the Fairgrounds. The Del Mar Fairgrounds is completely self-supporting and does not receive any support from the State. For more information, visit www.delmarfairgrounds.com