Ainsley Vince Scores Victory in $75,000 CN Grand Prix

June 29, 2004 – A 24-horse starting field contested the grand prix, with nine going clear over the course set by Quebec’s own Pierre Jolicoeur to advance to the jump-off. Riding her long-time partner, Catch 22, Vince laid down another clear round in a time of 44.06 seconds to overtake the lead from Yann Candele of France, but three riders known for their speed were still to follow – fellow Canadians Eric Lamaze and Mario Deslauriers as well as four-time Olympian Manuel Torres of Colombia. While all three had clear rounds, none were able to come close to catching Vince’s time.

“Going into the ring in the first round, I knew the course was jumpable because there had already been five clears at that point,” explained Vince who bases her own sales and training business in the Toronto area. “Catch 22 lightly rubbed one or two rails, but he was awesome, and I knew he was having an ‘on’ day. The course was typical Pierre, with tight turns, awkward angles and wide oxers. It wasn’t huge, but it was tricky, and it made for an exciting jump-off.”

“Coming back for the jump-off, I knew there were still three very good riders to follow, and I went as fast as I could within reason,” continued Vince. “Warming up, Mario and Eric suggested an inside turn that wasn’t originally part of my plan, but I went for it and it paid off. Ironically, it ended up being a turn that neither of them were able to make.”

Together, Vince and Catch 22, a 14-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding owned by Trinity Farm, have enjoyed an illustrious career. Since winning the Pan American Games Selection Trials in 1999, the pair claimed back-to-back Canadian Show Jumping Championship titles in 2001 and 2002, and recently made their third World Cup Final appearance at the 2004 World Cup Final in Milan, Italy, having already represented Canada at 2000 and 2003 World Cup Finals in Las Vegas, NV.

“He was fantastic, he couldn’t have been prouder of himself!” praised Vince, who collected $22,000 in prize money for the win. “He knows the routine, and he knows when he has done well. When he is good, he is phenomenal!”

Vince also topped a 21-horse starting field to claim victory in the $12,500 Kubota Open Welcome on Friday, July 2, with a new mount, Uno. Purchased this winter in Florida from S&L Farm, Vince has quickly moved the nine-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding by Lord Z up to the grand prix level.

With the next stop on her competition calendar being the CSI-W Blainville Jumping International in Blainville, QC, Vince will attempt to defend her title in the $60,000 Grand Prix Jumping du Quebec World Cup Qualifier on Sunday, July 11.