To the top of show jumping's Grandprix standings for the second time in three years, rider Margie Goldstein. A member of the U.S. Equestrian Team, Goldstein locked up the 1991 American Grandprix Association Rider of the Year award with a third-place finish aboard Saluut II in the AGA Championship at the National Horse Show, at the Meadowlands Arena last weekend. Goldstein missed most of the 1990 season after her left foot was crushed in a fall, but she won a record eight Grandprix events and earned more than $150,000 in prize money in '91. "These days the foot only hurts when I walk," she says. "Not when I ride."
By the Vancouver Canucks to a four-year, $2.7 million contract, former Soviet Central Red Army right wing Pavel Bure, 20. Last year, Bure was ranked the No. 1 junior player in the world, ahead of the not-quite-yet-legendary Eric Lindros. To free Bure from the final year of his contract with the Soviet Ice Hockey Federation, the Canucks agreed to pay the Soviets $200,000, and Bure will pay the Soviets $50,000 on his own. He should be worth it: At one point during negotiations he said he expects to score 50 goals a year in the NHL. At week's end the Canucks were in first place, two points up on Wayne Gretzky's L.A. Kings; now Vancouver may have its own Great One in the making.
As the perfect ballplayer, Oriole shortstop Cal Ripken Jr. Ripken became only the second player to top all seven statistical categories in the system devised in 1981 by Major League Baseball and the Players Association to rank all players for the purpose of determining compensation awards for teams losing free agents. Among American League shortstops in 1990 and '91 (ratings encompass two seasons' worth of stats), Ripken was first in plate appearances (1,412), batting average (.288), on-base percentage (.358), home runs (55), RBIs (198), fielding percentage (.991) and total chances (1,486). New York Yankee Don Mattingly achieved a perfect rating in 1987.
Three-time world champion Formula One driver Alain Prost, by Italy's Ferrari racing team. Prost recently compared his Ferrari race car's handling and pickup to those of a truck, and repeatedly blamed his failure to win a race in 1991 on the team and its equipment. The 36-year-old driver has won a record 44 Grand Prix races and narrowly missed winning a fourth world title in '90. He was fifth in the standings this year.
Heavyweight boxer Elijah Tillery, for taunting and kicking his opponent Riddick Bowe after the bell ended the first round of their bout in Washington, D.C., on Oct. 29. Bowe was hardly blameless: He threw a few punches at Tillery, and Bowe's manager, Rock Newman, grabbed Tillery in a choke hold and pulled him over the ropes and out of the ring as a pro wrestling-style battle royal erupted. During the melee, Tillery spat in the face of Bowe's publicist. Afterward, the 34-year-old Tillery was unrepentant. "I would have bit him if I could have gotten my mouthpiece out," he said.
Goldstein overcame more than one hurdle.