Wellington, FL – Canada’s Vanessa Mannix won a career-first Martha Jolicoeur Leading Lady Rider Award on Friday, February 14, during week six of the 12-week Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) in Wellington, FL.
Two top-10 finishes during week six guaranteed Mannix the first-time honor. She and Catinka 25, an 11-year-old Oldenburg mare (Catoki x Luxano), were seventh in the $37,000 CSI3* Equinimity WEF Challenge Cup Round 6 to start their week. They then finished 10th on a single time fault under the lights in the $37,000 CSI3* Grand Prix on Friday.
“This is a first for me, and it’s really special,” said Mannix, who hails from Calgary, AB. “There are some really wonderful riders here tonight, and I’m really honored to be recognized at the top of that list. It’s nice to have the women recognized at a show like this and to showcase what great competitors we have here.”
Of her longtime mount, Catinka 25, Mannix noted, “I’m really lucky to be partnered with Catinka. I have had her since she was seven. We know each other inside out. She’s a bit of a diva, but she always fights for me in the ring. To have a teammate like that with so much talent and heart is special.”
In recognition of claiming the Leading Lady title during a prestigious five-star week, Mannix was presented with a bottle of champagne, a bouquet of flowers, and a gift certificate for a shopping spree at Hunt, Ltd., by Sharon Loayza, Hayden Ernst, and Waverly Ernst, representing Martha Jolicoeur.
Throughout WEF, the Martha Jolicoeur Leading Lady Rider Award, given in memory of fellow realtor and horseman Dale Lawler, is presented weekly to the high-score female rider based on performances in the weekly WEF Challenge Cup Series and grand prix events. During the 12th and final week of competition, the Martha Jolicoeur Overall Leading Lady Rider Award will be presented to the female rider who accumulates the most points throughout the season. So far this season, Lillie Keenan, Jessica Springsteen, and Adrienne Sternlicht of the United States, as well as Great Britain’s Amanda Derbyshire have won the award and are now joined by Mannix in contending for the overall title.
A sponsor and dedicated supporter of horse sport at WEF for many years, 2020 marks Jolicoeur’s 10th season presenting the weekly Leading Lady Rider Award. A former competitor herself, Jolicoeur enjoyed a successful international show jumping career before becoming Florida’s number one Douglas Elliman real estate broker for 2018.
Based in Wellington full-time, Jolicoeur has been serving the Wellington equestrian community since 2005 and specializes in both residential and farm properties. As part of the elite Douglas Elliman Real Estate Sports and Entertainment division, she offers a wide range of property listings that fit the equestrian lifestyle. To learn more about Martha W. Jolicoeur and her listings, visit www.marthasproperties.com. Follow her on Facebook and Instagram for behind-the-scenes tours of available Wellington properties.