Katie McVean and Delphi in action at the World Cup final. © Lulu Kyriacou
The final day was two full rounds for the top 27 combinations. A field of 19 came back for the second round.
The competition was won by German rider Christian Ahlmann on Taloubet Z, with Canada's Eric Lamaze second on Hickstead, and Dutch rider Jeroen Dubbeldam third on BMC Van Grunsven Simon. Two riders shared fourth place, and three others shared sixth with McVean.
McVean picked up €15,000 for the placing, which was the best ever finish in a World Cup final for a Kiwi. New Zealand's previous best result was from Olympian John Cottle and Arturo, who finished 18th in 1983 in Vienna.
Talk was rife around the show ground that Delphi was to be sold to an as yet un-named rider, but the 24-year-old has denied the rumours.
McVean's father, Jeff, was ringside watching his daughter and the horse he calls his "princess" in the event.
"I've always believed in her (Delphi) - she's a very good horse and still so inexperienced at this level," Jeff McVean said.
His excitement was tinged with "an element of disappointment" but he says they are still incredibly proud.
"She's a New Zealand-bred horse and Kate has come out and matched it with the best - it's very good for her ... for both of them."
Katie was absolutely delighted with her results over the World Cup show.
"It was so much bigger out there in the second round and Delphi was trying so hard," she said after the class. "After that (rail) she was away again - I'm so very, very happy. It has been a dream."
Additional reporting: Diana Dobson