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Summer-Autumn 2012 The magazine for Harness Racing and horse loving kids!!

The coolest pony on track - NZ Kidz Kartz Cup winner Frisbee

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Hey Hey - Hopples here! Have I got a Hot 2 Trot for you! It's been a while I know - I have been spelling for a while as I pulled up a little short after all that summer racing and Kids Go Racing. My vet told me I needed to rest my offside hind, so thats what I did! But I am back now better than ever and ready to give you a run down on the last couple of months. How about you hang with me and have a little read of the following... • Meet Sunny Bill, the baby brother of Poppie and Lexie and see how the girls have been getting on. • Zac Butcher tells us about his road to being a race winner extroardinaire. • My good friend Frisbee and one cool kid Kerryn Tomlinson took out the NZ Kidz Kartz Trotting Cup! I find out what it was like to win such a big race! • I wrap up the Harness Jewels and let you in on what went down in the races. • I got to interview an amazing female driver and trainer Natalie Rasmussen, and ask her what it is like to move from sunny Queensland to cold Christchurch. • Kidz Kartz has wrapped up for last season and all the clubs had their prizegivings! Check out who all the winners were! • There is a full wrap of the Junior Drivers race series that have been going on, featuring NZ's best junior's, including my mate Zac Butcher! • And of course our great regular features on Industry people, Staff members from HRNZ and lots and lots of great photos from around the tracks and much much more! I hope you enjoy it as much as I did putting it together! And if you havent already noticed check me out above with NZ Kidz Kartz Cup winner Kerryn after she won!



Kristie Hill

Layout & Design:

Brooke Henderson Katie McNamara

Contributors: Kristie Hill Natalie Gameson Photos: Race Images Brooke Henderson Trish Dunell Aimee Edmonds Jayde Hebden Photography Kidz Kartz Clubs Katie McNamara PO Box 459, Christchurch 8140 Brooke Henderson Ph (03) 964 1200 Kidz Kartz Clubs Email: Natalie Gameson

To get in touch with any of our Kidz Kartz Clubs check out our new website and head to

Poppie, Lexie, Maddie, Ruby & Sunny Bill

Poppie (Sunchita) and Lexie (De Real Diva) have had quite the season and along with their two sisters Maddie (Maddison Hill) and Ruby (Ruby’n’Diamonds) have made their mother Carmenchita very proud. Lexie qualified and after a nice long spell had two starts at Nelson in June, driver Stephen McNally really had his hands full with her as Lexie raced fiercely and pulled herself tired. She has had another break and is now back jogging with special attention being paid to her diet and keeping her relaxed. Miss Poppie had a great season, and won her first race at Kaikoura and followed that with an amazing performance to run second on Cup Day. She won another race at Addington in April and finished the season with two wins, two seconds and two fourths from 13 starts. Poppie has had a nice long spell in Nelson and has completed four weeks jogging so look for her back on track early October. Big sisters Maddie and Ruby also performed well throughout the season with the ever consistent Maddie winning two races and had six minor placings. Ruby N Diamonds won a race also and had two minor placings before being retired after an injury. Big news from the broodmare paddock however was that after delivering four fillies Carmenchita dropped a lovely Sundon colt (making him a full brother to Poppie). Oh and his name 'Sunny Bill'. Sunny Bill is now weaned and has himself a great paddock mate Bobby M. (You can see him eating out of the bucket with his mate Bobby M in the middle pic) Both Carmenchita and Ruby N Diamonds are heading to the breeding barn and with the choice of trotting stallions now available in NZ, choosing sires is going to be quite the task. – Watch this space!

�err�� & �ris�i� Victorious in Kidz Kartz Cup

How did it feel to win the KK NZ Cup? I was thrilled to actually be in the race and to win it was just so exciting! Did you have a plan on how you were going to drive the race? Even though we had a couple of disagreements during the season Frisbee actually has very good manners, so my plan was to use his good standing start manners and make a quick beginning. You certainly made a flying start and set up a strong pace in front were you worried at all about being run down? Did you know where the other runners were? I was hoping he would stay trotting and we could keep a good lead. I did know I was in front by quite a way, however, there was lots of pre race talk about how good Kristine Kullen (2nd place getter) had been performing in the North Island so I needed to keep reminding Frisbee to keep up the pace. Were you nervous before the race? Yes - I was very nervous, we got to do a warm up lap and that was really good for Frisbee as he needs to do some work prior to racing as he can be 'fresh' and a bit of a handful. This was good as it was really windy and I came back in and we plugged his ears some more, so he would not be so nervy. How was Frisbee's form heading into the cup? Did he win any of the qualification heats? I had mixed experiences during the qualifying heats, one night Frisbee bolted on me and I was the `on track entertainment` between races. We won one heat and ran second in most others. I actually had the slowest qualifying time of all the Canterbury and Mid Canterbury ponies. Did you ever think you could win when you knew that your big sister Sheree and Dimmy had set some outstanding qualifying times? I knew Dimmy had some good times and is the faster pony, but I thought that Frisbee could have a chance of winning the cup if he behaved himself and the warm up lap probably helped get some of the sting out of him. Dimmy is very fast but he can be difficult, especially at the start.

What was your favourite part of the win? Crossing the finish line in first place! How much time did you put into preparing for the Cup? We brought the ponies back into work in August and from then on I worked him every day. What attributes do you think gave Frisbee the win? The Gary Roberts cart! It has been adjusted so I can fit in it! Henrietta Westrum for shoeing him! His manners, (on the day) his reliability and me! Tell us some more about Frisbee... Frisbee is an eight year old dark bay gelding and was bred by Paul Harnett from Kaikoura. He loves to eat long grass and loves other ponies company. His paddock mate is my sister Sheree’s pony Dimmy Can you tell us about the colours you wear? My colours belong to Peter Smith, who bred Lyell Creek. Mrs Smith made the colours, their son Ben has the colours registered to him. Jim Curtin (NZ Cup winning driver) presented you with the Cup is Jim one of your favourite drivers? Yes because he is a great driver and a very nice person – we are both NZ Cup winners! What was it like going back to school a NZ Cup winner? It was great going back and telling the school and my class and I was even in the school newsletter Can you tell us a little bit about your time with Kidz Kartz and some of the ponies you have been involved with? I started Kidz Kartz when I was six and have been involved now for six years. I remember my very first pony that I drove on the initial course I did, which was Tolken (a club pony). I started looking after another club pony Keegan, he came to live with us and we still look after him now. I think Keegan made me a good driver because he is not an easy pony to drive he has a number of tricks. I nearly won a cup trial on him the first year, but he saw the grass just before the finish line and it was game over! Can I just say thank you to Addington Raceway and NZMTC for allowing us to race at their track and all the people who make the Kidz Kartz NZ Cup possible. I would also like to thank my Nana and Pop.

Frisbee and I had a great experience, I will never forget it!

Harness Jewels Day - the Winners, the Losers and ME, oh I mean everything in between…. Its Queen’s Birthday weekend and the racing enthusiasts are either on their way to Cambridge or insuring they have prime viewing position in front of trackside. It is time for the million dollar harness race day “The Harness Jewels”. Nine races and nine winners. Each race held over the speed racing distance of one mile (1609m). Saturday, June 2, dawned a crisp yet sunny day providing perfect racing conditions for track records to fall...

Race 1 - 4YO Diamond The first race was underway at noon. It turned out to be the beginning of a great day for the 'underdogs' with Matty Williamson and Pembrook’s Delight making the most of a perfect trip in the trail and take the passing lane to get up and beat hot favourite Bettor Cover Lover and Donegal Delight in a time of 1.55.4. Trained by Jeff and Jude Knight in Roxburgh, Central Otago meant one win for the little guys and it was appreciated by the harness racing community as the atmosphere in the stables was electric as the smaller stables continued on their winning ways.

Race 2 - 2YO Ruby A brand new baby son named Jonty - I am quite sure inspired Sam Smolenski to put in a superb front running display, getting the somewhat hit or miss Royal Aspirations in front from the get go, for an all the way win in Race 2. Royal Aspirations trotted the distance in a staggering time of 1.56.5, which is a Harness Jewels and track record for a 2YO trotter. Royal Aspirations distanced himself from the field by 4 ½ lengths, from Sheemon and Paramount Queen.

Race 3 - 2YO Diamond Race 3 and the 2YO fillies came out firing and it was Delightful Christian who took the event from the favourite Onlyforyou. Delightful Christian after being wide early made the front with one lap to go and won by 1 ½ lengths in a time of 1.57.3. After working hard down the back Rozelski finished into 3rd place.

Race 5 - 3YO Ruby Wearing the Harness Jewels leader yellow colours was for the 3YO Ruby was star trotting filly Escapee. The filly had not made the Yellow colours her own without a few mistakes prior to the day and with the filly starting from the unruly she was unable to get her game on and was out of contention around the first bend. As the gate left Cyclone U Bolt found the front, Lotalov settled in a handy position before moving to take the front with just under a round to go. In an exciting finish Todd Macfarlane guided Cyclone U Bolt up the passing lane to beat home a fast finishing Stent and Lotalov.

Race 5 - 3YO Diamond Race 5 was quickly upon us and this certainly seemed to be one of the toughest fields of the day with an even and consistent bunch of 3YO fillies all fighting it out for the coveted Diamond. Natalie Rasmussen aided home O Baby to be the first ever Woman driver to win a Harness Jewels race. O Baby is owned by none other than Braeden and Caroline Whitelock…. Yes the Mum and Dad of Crusader and All Black players Adam, Luke, George and Sam! O Baby was a clear winner over Elusive Chick and Oaks winner Cheer the Lady.

Race 6 - 4YO Ruby Matty Williamson looked set to take out his second Jewels race of the day with favourite Irish Whisper in the 4 Year Old Trotting Ruby. However, making an unusual mistake just before leaving the gate meant his chances were over. After an inch perfect drive from Philip Butcher to get local horse Charlemagne home at the head of the field. It was a huge win for local trainer Colin Butler, with Springbank Sam and Phil’s Gift finishing in second and third.

Race 7 - 2YO Emerald The Barry Purdon trained Five Card Draw went into the race the favourite and wearing the yellow leader colours proved too strong in the 2YO Colts and Geldings Emerald, taking the race out in a time of 1.55.1 over a brave Mighty Flying Mac, with Border Control putting in a big run for third.

Race 8 - 4YO Emerald The NZ Cup winner Terror to Love stepped out in Race 8 taking on the NZ bred Aussie raider Mustang Mach who had already managed to claim one of our 4YO feature races. Though today, was not his day as Dexter Dunn sent Mustang Mach forward from the outside of the gate but was unable to cross Anthony Butt and Terror to Love who lead throughout the event and came away with the win in 1.54.3. Second went to Jarcullembra and third placing was Easy on the Eye.

Race 9 - 3YO Emerald The last race finished the day off in a smoking hot time, in fact the fastest mile rate of the day, which also equalled the quickest mile in NZ. It looked a race in two, with the cards slightly favouring Ideal Scott after his sensational trial just one week before. The other horse in consideration was the consistent Smolda, who had a hiccup in his preparation for the race the week prior. It was Ideal Scott who took up the lead position from the gate only to be attacked by Smolda and Mark Purdon. With Ideal Scott not wanting to hand up the lead and Smolda not wanting to be left in the open these two locked horns and set up a 1.52.1 mile rate, which was taken out by Smolda who continued on to win the race by nearly 5 lengths. Let’s Elope cleared the pocket behind Ideal Scott to finish in second place with Bettor's Creek filling third spot. As for me, I loved my Jewels Day. I found myself a nice grassy piece of embankment and watched all the races from there! Afterwards it was off home for my oats and barley and then a good nap - watching those flying miles can make a pony very tired!

Natalie Rasmussen - trainer, driver, Aussie, Kiwi! Full Name: Natalie Clair Rasmussen Born: 03/03/77

How did you get into Harness Racing? My family has always been involved in Harness Racing Dad is a trainer and driver himself. My sisters and I always had ponies and hacks and we were really into our equestrian riding, especially eventing. My older sister Kylie trains and drives Standardbreds and Vicki my younger sister is also a harness trainer. What advise can you give our readers to help them become a driver like yourself? It doesn’t matter what you are doing, make sure that you do the best that you can. Always try hard, keep your head up and get on with it! Do you prefer training or driving? What do you like about each? I enjoy both. Training is rewarding because you get to start with the horse and have to get it right through to the races and winning races. There is so much that you need to know and as a trainer you are always learning and need to keep up with the play and keep up to date. I’m a very competitive and aggressive person as a driver on the racetrack and love to win races, so I also find the driving very rewarding.

How long have you been in NZ? I have been here for nearly 12 months now and I’m really enjoying it. I love the cold weather and when I get time, I can’t wait to get up to the ski fields. What in your opinion are the differences between Australia and NZ in training and driving horses? The training is similar; every trainer does their own thing and has their own ways of training horses. The only real difference is trainers need to cater for the colder weather here as opposed to the hot weather in Queensland. I find that the driving is a lot cleaner over here and the RIU is to credit for that. I find the driving here more enjoyable and it’s a good style of racing.

Natalie's first driving win in New Zealand with Vi Et Animo in the 2011 Methven Cup

You had the most amazing success with Blacks A Fake (Blackie) how did it feel to be involved with such an amazing equine athlete? Humbling! To be given the opportunity to train one of the world’s best Standardbreds was an experience that will never be replaced. He could never be replaced! Every trainer and driver knows that these horses don’t come along everyday so to be associated with him for his entire career was an amazing experience. Did you do anything special with him because he was so good? I would probably built a stable in my house! Blackie came first. I always Well he certainly was did the best for him and really looked after – six Inter looked after him, whether it Dominions for four wins was the way I placed his races and two seconds!!! or how he was kept. He got all the special treatment that I could give him. What is Blackie up to now? Blackie and his best mate Simon, another Standardbred who went everywhere with him, are retired and living at Mum and Dads. They get fed and stabled every night and also get their bucket of molasses water, so they are very happy and fat! I want to retire there!

Since you have been here in NZ you have struck up a winning relationship with O Baby, in fact you took out the 3YO Diamond at the Jewels and you are the first woman driver to do so. How did that feel? It was a wonderful feeling to win the Jewels. I never set out expecting to achieve that but to do so was very rewarding, especially considering O Baby was one of our third string 3yo fillies early in the season. O Baby can be a little difficult to get along with, and she can be a bit naughty but we seem to have struck up a good relationship and get on very well together. I was also nice to be the first woman to achieve something without it being associated with Blackie. You also won the Queensland Oaks with O Baby and the Queensland and Gold Coast Derby’s on Best Deal Yet, how did it feel winning in front of your ‘old’ hometown? It was very satisfying to win at ‘home’.

As you know Braeden and Caroline Whitelock who own O Baby are the parents of some not bad rugby players, in Sam George, Adam and Luke, do you follow the rugby? Are you a Crusaders supporter? No, I didn’t follow rugby and didn’t know who they all were – but I do now and I also now follow the Crusaders. Did you play sports at high school? Do you play any sports now to keep you fit? During high school I was busy competing in equestrian events, but I also enjoyed running. I love to run and run 8 - 10km six times a week. I also go to the gym at least five times a week as well as working in the stables which helps keep me fit. This is one fit lady!

Which do you support League/ Union / AFL Do you prefer Pacer / Trotter But the more I have to do with trotters my opinion is starting to change. We never had many trotters in Queensland so I never had much to do with them. If you were an Olympian what sport would you be competing in? I would be competing in either the equestrian or the running events. I know it is definitely not swimming!! I don’t like swimming at all!

Here in NZ we have Kidz Kartz. In Australia there are the pony trots, were you ever involved in them? What are your thoughts on these programmes? Yes I was involved in the pony trots when I was younger. I had a very slow and very naughty little pony called ‘Cockroach’. I think this is a wonderful Sounds concept and it gives like Cockroach was well kids a good grounding named hehe before they start working with the bigger horses. Country you prefer to live Australia / New Zealand It’s amazing how welcome I’ve been made to feel by our owners and the many other people that I have met. And I would really like to thank everyone for that, it’s made the move from Queensland much easier.

Natalie is one busy lady and she sure loves that Blackie and has given him the best home! - I think I am going to make her an honouree KIWI!

Zac Butcher Kidz Kartz Graduate Catch-up

Hopples has started the first of this catch up series with Harness Racing’s newest pin up boy, Zac Butcher. Zac is in his fourth full season as a Junior Driver and has clocked up 1862 drives for 230 winners no easy accomplishment for any Junior Driver.

Why did you get into Kidz Kartz? I really just got into Kidz Kartz because it looked fun. I used to go to the races and had nothing to do; it also helped that Club nights were held just down the road from home, so I could just bike there and then drive the ponies. I only did it for a couple of years and then had a couple of years off before I got my trials licence.

What did you enjoy about Kidz Kartz, what did you enjoy the most? Kidz Kartz was fun! I loved it and even better it gave me something to do at the races and it was a great help to get me into racing. Winning Kidz Kartz races was the best part. Of course Kidz Kartz was fun!

What did you learn? Did it help with your driving today? I learnt more about the ponies, gearing up, how to hold the reins. Kidz Kartz also taught me the driving basics. It’s easier to learn and get confidence driving a small pony than it is a big horse.

Did you always think you would be a driver?

No, I never wanted to be a driver or involved with racing, I just wanted to play rugby and have fun. Obviously Dad (David Butcher) was involved so he used to make be go outside and help him out and work around the stables. It wasn’t until I had my first drive at the Trials, behind the mobile gate, that I got a real taste for racing – then I was hooked! You didn’t want to be a driver?

How do you motivate yourself to get out of bed in the morning?

It very easy when you work for a trainer like Barry Purdon, because I get to drive good horses! It’s also a great work environment, so it is easy to go to work. And besides that I need to keep getting the drives at the races to try and beat Dad in the Drivers Premiership! (Which Zac achieved last season)

Do you do anything or watch anyone to help improve your driving?

I have always watched all the good drivers and I still do. If they ever have any advice for me, I always listen. Even if I don’t always agree, the senior drivers have been out there race driving a lot longer than me, so their advice is always helpful and appreciated.

Would you like to go overseas and drive?

I wouldn’t like to move overseas, I’m very happy here in NZ. But I would like to experience driving in other countries like the USA.

You and your Dad have a fun rivalry on the racetrack, How much has your dad influenced your career and driven you to do well?

Actually Hopples, it’s not a fun rivalry; Dad and I are very serious about beating each other. If he beats me I will be gutted! And I’m not sure if Dad will talk to me if I beat him. But honestly, Dad has been the main influence on my career and has always been right behind my driving. In my first few seasons Dad was the one who helped me get a lot of my drives and would even give up his drives for me. Pop (John Butcher) and Phil (Butcher) have also been huge influences on my career and the horseman I am now.

Also without Barry I wouldn’t be where I am today. The horses he has allowed me to drive and what I have learnt from listening and watching him has been invaluable. I’m sure the competition between Zac and his dad David will be hot again next season... I say Go Zac!

What advice would you give young people coming into the industry?

Listen and learn - I was always taught that "little boys should be seen and not heard", Whoa – Deep... so I have always tried to listen to what everyone has to say. Also, do as you are told and in this industry you need to keep your head down and your bum up!

You are only the third Junior Driver to achieve 100 wins in a season, how does that feel?

Awesome! In my first season I drove 18 winners, so I never imagined being able to drive 100 in a season. There have been a lot of very good drivers come through the Junior ranks and haven’t been able to achieve this so I’m very grateful for all the good horses I have been able to drive and win on. Also for the support Barry and the owners have given me by putting me on their horses. Quite an achievement!

What is something you would like to achieve next season? I would like to win 100 races again next season and of course beat Dad!

What is something you would like to achieve in harness racing? I would like to win the Drivers Premiership! And that would mean beating Dexter (Dunn).

If you could go on holiday anywhere in the world where would you go and why? Contiki Tour around Europe and experience other parts of the world.

You and Simon Lawson sponsor Kidz Kartz Driver Nessie Turan, how did this come about? After Cadets at Cambridge Raceway one afternoon Simon and I were watching a Kidz Kartz club night and there was this naughty little pony that only Nessie could get going. We both said she looked like a great little up and coming driver. So one thing led to another and we ended up sponsoring her. With Nessie’s help, we designed and got a set of colours made up and she gets $10 for every win she has. Hope you’re not winning too many races Nessie – Zac and Simon will be broke!

You also race a Greyhound, tell us about her?

Her name is Flash That and I race her with Josh Dickie and Simon Lawson. Andre Poutama helped get us involved and Lisa Ahern trains her. Flash That has already won 4 races!!

Favourite horse? Elsu

Favourite track?

There is nothing like winning a race at Alexandra Park under the lights. Flash That

Mandy White Continuing with our series of industry careers we are having a chat to Mandy White (nee Chesmar) about her role as a Clerk of the Course in the Canterbury area and her interesting Equestrian activities.


What does your job as Clerk of the Course involve?

First and foremost we are there to help ensure the safety of the drivers if something goes wrong during a race. We now carry radios so if there is a problem we can keep in touch with the starter and stewards. If a race needs to be abandoned the stewards can contact us through the radios. We also work to ensure the drivers and horses are out on the track in time for their races.


Do you do any special training with your horses, because I am sure it would be a bit daunting for a thoroughbred to be out amongst all those sulkies? My new horses get worked off the side of the cart so each day they jog up and know what it is like to be bumping into a sulky. They also get jogged up on the jogger frame so they are fit if required to keep up with a wayward harness horse.


Hopples – Isn’t it handy that your husband trains one or two harness horses...

What do you need to wear?

Normal riding gear including jodhpurs, riding boots, shirts and stocks we have red coats so we standout, and to ensure safety should we take a fall we wear back protectors (Safety vests) as well. We also wear riding gloves and long jackets in the winter and in the wet to try and keep as warm as possible because some nights at Addington are just freezing!


How did you become a Clerk of the Course?

I asked Dave Ferriman (he is like the head Clerk of the Course in the Canterbury region) if they needed anyone to fill in. They did on occasions, so I started by just filling in on the days someone else was away and got a fulltime position when Mr Williams retired.


What race meetings do you work at? Mainly Rangiora and Addington.

Is there a favourite race meeting that you like to work at?

Most definitely! I love the excitement and the buzz that is around on Cup Day.


Do you work at thoroughbred race meetings?

In January there is lots of racing happening around Canterbury, Nelson, Marlborough and the West Coast, so I cover the Coast thoroughbred meetings.


What is the best and worst thing about your job? The least enjoyable thing about my job is trying to get all the drivers out on time especially the ones that seem to like being last out! The best thing would be bringing the horses back to the birdcage after they have had a win - especially the ones I have a share in!


You have an interesting horsey background can you tell us about it?

I have always been around horses and compete most weekends at shows and I also rode as a jockey for a number of years.


What about husband Adam?

Adam has been involved in harness racing for a number of years firstly as a driver and then as a trainer. He now has branched out and followed his interest in farriery and has his own business shoeing horses and has opened a farrier shop.


You and Adam have a super cute son Flynn, will he become an equestrian star?

Flynn has his own pony 'Missy' that he shows. However, I don’t think Flynn will become a jockey, but he might end up being a farrier like his dad as he likes to get in there now and help. He also likes watching the races and his favourite driver is Robbie Holmes. One thing he does do while watching the races is practice being a commentator and would like to be like Mark McNamara.


Hopples – well he has the height for it!

What do you think about Kidz Kartz?

Kids Kartz is a great idea, getting the kids out there and having a go at driving and hopefully enjoying it that much that they want to stay in the industry and carry on to be junior/open drivers. Hopples – Maybe we will see Flynn and Missy out there soon!

During November last year Equidays held its inaugural event over 3 days. And what and extravaganza it was. There was everything from international dressage and eventing riders, to cowboys, and natural horsemanship experts doing displays and breaking in horses over the three days. There were displays and shops promoting and selling everything you can imagine that had anything to do with horses. We were there, along with NZ Standardbred Breeders, North Island Standardbred Riders, Thoroughbred Racing, Thoroughbred Breeders, Thoroughbred Marketing, Industry Training, HYHP and Kidz Kartz! Many kids came and enjoyed a drive on the Kidz Kartz ponies, most coming back for a second drive!

Prospectus 2011

This year they are doingCreek it again! And so are we! | New Zealand Mystery Events Centre | Hamilton

Equidays was so successful that they have decided to make it an annual event. Equidays is an all-encompassing equine event that focuses on all aspects of the equine industry, business and recreation. With demonstrations from each of the equine disciplines, competitions, clinics and training. So make sure you come along this year and check out our site as well as have a drive on one of our Kidz Kartz ponies.

Equidays 2-4 November 2012 Sites H5-H7 Opposite The 3 Horsemen arenas

FUN at the RACES - the 2011/12 racing season

2012 NEW ZEALAND secure your specs



Last month North Islander Zac Butcher came to Christchurch and claimed the NZ Junior Driver Championship for the second time. Although having won the title in 2009, Zac had not placed in the last two Champs so he headed south determined to claim victory. He had already surpassed 100 wins for the season and at Addington he showed them why he had become just the third Junior to do so. The first two heats belonged to Zac with wins behind Rambo Seelster and Ratlock. Although he finished eighth in the last heat, his lead from the first two saw him take the title back north. The South Island captain Matty WIlliamson finished second ahead of team mate Jack Trainor assisting in the South Island claiming the Inter-Island Challenge for the first time. Zac was captain of the North Island. 1 2 3 4 5= 5=

Zac Butcher Matthew Williamson Jack Trainor Simon McMullan Tim Williams Mitchell Kerr


7= 7= 9 10 11 12

Robbie Close Adam Sanderson Kyle Marshall Josh Dickie David Branch Simon Lawson


Inter-Island Challenge Winner

South Island (136) North Island (121)

In early March four New Zealand junior drivers flew over seven hours to Perth in Western Australia to compete in the 2012 Australasian Young Drivers Championship. Josh Dickie competed in the series as the Defending Champion after winning the title in the South Island last year. Fellow Auckland-based drivers Zac Butcher (North Island) and Simon McMullan (New Zealand) also travelled to Perth along with Cantabrian Tim Williams representing the South Island. Simon was the first of the Kiwis to earn maximum points with a win on Life Boat at Northam on the second day. The following day Tim jumped up the points table to second behind Ellen Tormey after winning with Charged and Young Richard at Narrogin. However on Inter Dominion Grand Final night, Tim was unable to get the points needed to beat Ellen from Victoria, Australia. In his last season as a junior driver, Tim finished the best of the New Zealanders in 4th position with Josh close behind in 5th. Simon finished 7th while Zac had an unlucky series finishing 10th. Ellen won the series becoming just the third female driver to do so in the Champs 20 year history. 1 2 3 4 5=

Ellen Tormey Barton Cockburn Ken Rogers Tim Williams Josh Dickie

Victoria Queensland South Australia South Island Defending Champion

5= 7 8 9 10

Kerry Ann Turner Simon McMullan Morgan Woodley Todd Rattray Zac Butcher

New South Wales New Zealand Western Australia Tasmania North Island

Darren DeFilippi There is a race held each year which our junior horsemen both past and present will tell you is the one race they strive to win, perhaps more so than any junior championship. The race is called the Darren DeFilippi Memorial. It is a most fitting way for the Harness Racing community to remember one of their loved sons. Darren was one of the genuine nice guys of harness racing. He was respected by many older than him and he was a talented horseman. He was outstandingly polite, well liked by those who knew him and seen as a up and coming star of racing. Even from an early age sitting on the arm of the chair with his Dad Colin’s whip, it was clear to see that horses were in his blood. With the help of his Mum Julie, Darren became an accomplished equestrian rider, competing in showing and eventing along with his sister Mandy. His father Colin told Darren if he wanted to be involved in harness racing that he would need to serve his time with another trainer, so while still at school, Darren used to ride his bike round the road to the stables of Robert Dunn to gain this valuable experience. Robert later employed Darren to work full time as a stablehand once he left high school. It was here that Darren received a lot of his grounding in Harness Racing and became part of the extended Dunn family. Robert and Rose speak about what a dream Darren was to have around, with his effervescence (bubbly and bright) personality, he was well regarded by everyone and their kids treated him like a big brother. A very young Johnny and Dexter were regularly found following Darren around the stables ‘helping’ him out. In August 1994 Darren gained his Junior Drivers licence and his first drive was on a horse called Stambro. Soon after, his first win was on the Robert Dunn trained Judicial. Just over a year and 14 wins later on November 25, 1995 Darren had his last drive, which also happened to be on Stambro. Sadly on this day, on his way home from the races Darren was involved in a car accident that claimed his life. In a tragic turn of events Stambro was also involved in a separate floating accident and was unable to be saved. This was a devastating tragedy and loss that turned the harness community upside down. With the support of Colin, Julie, Mandy and the rest of the DeFilippi family, HRNZ and the NZMTC remember Darren by running a race for trotters called The Darren DeFilippi Memorial. This is for Junior Drivers and is always well contested with many Junior’s who never knew Darren personally, but still wanting to win this special race. Many trainers also set their trotters for this race, as they want to be a part of the legacy. This year the Darren DeFilippi Memorial was held on July 6 and won by Matthew Williamson and trainer Phil Williamson, with the horse Beyond Reason. It was the second win for both Matty and father Phil and Matty said, “that it is a privilege to win this race and it is a race I have strived to win because of its prestige amongst the harness community”. The race has proven elusive for Robert Dunn to win as a trainer. This is also the case for both his sons as neither Johnny nor Dexter were able to get any closer than second in the race as well. Robert said “It is one race I would love to win” and if he manages to do so it will be one of the highlights of his career! Darren DeFilippi was a young man who has left a lasting impression on the harness racing community and it is only too fitting that he is remembered by all who knew him and those who are aware of the legacy he has left with a race at one of his much loved tracks, Addington Raceway. Treasured in my heart you'll stay, until we meet again someday.

Kidz Kartz Season Wrap Cambridge

The annual Waikato Kidz Kartz prize giving, held at the Clubhouse Sports Bar in the middle of May, bought the curtain down on another successful season for the club and many of its members. Keeping with the clubs tradition of trying something new each year for their prize giving, this year the committee went with a catered meal in the friendly surroundings of The Clubhouse and a big thank you goes to JT and his staff for ensuring the evening was a big hit. This years Club Member of the Year was Dylan Ferguson who became the first member to win the award twice, previously winning in the 2009-10 season. In his acceptance speech Dylan echoed the thoughts of all the kids in thanking the ponies owners for bringing their ponies along for all the kidz to enjoy. He also wanted to thank the many parent helpers that make it possible for the kids to enjoy the thrill of driving the ponies.

The 2011-12 Waikato Kidz Kartz Prizegiving winners -

Club Member of the Year – Dylan Ferguson Pony of the Year (sponsored by Dunstan Feeds) – I'm Lucky Most Promising Member (White Star Stables) – Jordan Treweek, Runner up – Ashley Handley Most Helpful member – Mark Johnson, RU – Laura Thornton Most Improved Senior Member – Holly Thornton, RU – Anthony Slaney/Julia Barugh Most Improved Junior Member – Emily Johnson, RU – Emma Slaney/Jordyn Bublitz Best Presented Driver & Pony – Nessie Turan (Peanut), RU – Rachel Clark (Caramello) Outstanding Junior Member – Bailey Rogerson Sportsmanship Award – Ashley Handley Leadership Award – Dylan Ferguson Most Enthusiastic Members – Abbie Crawley, Hannah Doak Stars of the Future – Ella Smith, Paige Davis, Tynealle Balfour Perseverance Award – Codie White Blonde Award – Tammy Johnson Participation Certificates – Kaleb Bublitz, Josh Oliver, Taylor Pereira, Ethan Ross, Tiela Rudolph, Sarah Taylor

Otago Kidz kartz and Pony trust Otago inc Annual prizegiving 2011/12 season Overall Excellence: Madeline Seuseu-Musgrave Driver of the season: Corey Campbell Most improved senior: Taylah Johnston Most improved Intermediate: Grace Cook Most improved Junior: Gracie Woodhouse Award for dedication: Isaac Scott Award for helpfulness: Georgia Cook and Emersyn Thom Sportsmanship Award: Sarah Broad and Jade Watkin Up and comers award: Jayden Bishop and Grace Bishop. Drive of the season: Christina Weston Pony of the season: Pocket Rocket (Kelsey) Most Improved Pony: Spice Weasel (Spice)

Southland Senior drivers and ponies from Southland competed in the 1st Annual 'Robin Dundee Southland Kidz Kartz Cup' on January 28 at Ascot Park, Invercargill. This race was won by Chelsea Faithful driving Tiny Spirit. Chelsea has made an impression on the club this year with her ability and dedication shining through. The Southland duo of Georgia Smith and Jaccka Squirt combined with Chelsea Faithful and Macca Attacker, went on to win the 'Waikouaiti Cup Challenge' hosted by the Otago Club. Children and ponies from Canterbury, Ashburton, Southland and Otago competed over 3 races. Shanae Todd represented Southland at the recent Lizzie of Rosslands NZ Kidz Kartz Rising Stars Drivers Series in Auckland this season and enjoyed her time with the other kidz from throughout the country. She was reportedly nervous about driving at the Park but learnt a lot with the help of her travel companion and Uncle, Reagan Todd.

The club awards for this season: Premier Senior Driver: Premier Junior Driver: Most Improved Driver: Most Dedicated: Pony of the Year: Stable Foreman:

Alex McIntosh Invercargill Cassandra Lott Balclutha Rebecca Heads Waimumu Chelsea Faithful Winton Kina Craig’s Boy Shane Phillips Winton

The club has fifteen ponies which vary in size and ability from the absolute bombproof ponies for beginners, to bigger ponies with a bit more 'personality' for the more experienced drivers. Club nights are held at Wyndham’s Young Quinn racetrack on a Wednesday night from 5.30-7.30pm during daylight-savings Follow us on Facebook at Kidz Kartz Southland. Contact us at


2012 Prize Giving Awards

Noel Little Helper Awards - Renee Rowe and Rhiana Brown John MacIntosh Trophy (for most wins of the season) Jassinta Cooper and Tegen Edwards Most Improved Novice - Holly Noakes Most Promising Novice - Caitlin Schneider Rookie of the Year - Olivia Montgomery Most Improved Member - Simone Hill Rennie Give it a Go Award - Renee Rowe Best Attitude - Madison Grayling

Drive of the Season - Jake MacFarlane Wolfenden Family Horsemanship Award - Taitlyn Hanara Contribution Award (Club Person) - Noel Northcott Most Contribution Committee Member - Noakes Family High Points Driver of the Year - Danni MacFarlane John and Donna's Challenge Trophy - Tegen Edwards Awatea Farms Pony of the Year - Lightning Runner Up Pony of the Year - Jack High Points Pony of the Year - Clyde

Canterbury After a great year of racing in Canterbury the club decided to take to some bowling for their end of year prizegiving. A great afternoon was had by all and many were up for some friendly competition (especially the parents!). The club was very proud to have a NZ Kidz Kartz Cup winner (Frisby and Kerryn Tomlinson) in 2011 and look forward to another great season! Most Improved Driver – Darren Keast Runner-up Most Improved Driver – Jack Ryder Horsemanship Award – Tarryn Jones Contribution to Kidz Kartz – John Morrison Best Presented Ponies of the Year – Caitlin Adlam (Gen, Bloss, Alondondell and Alphie) Up and Coming Driver Ten Years and Under – Jacob Dunn Up and Coming Driver Ten to 12 years – Josh Weaver Up and Coming Driver Ten to 12 years – Sarah O’Reilly Up and Coming Driver 13 Years and Older – Sheree Tomlinson Up and Coming Driver 13 Years and Older – Oliver Adlam Pony of the Year – Tolkien Runner-up Pony of the Year – Keegan


Kidz Kartz Kumeu Purple Power Day

The end of the 2011/2012 season for the Kumeu Kidz Kartz coincided with the Kumeu Kidz Kartz Cups. It is cups, as there are two up for grabs, one for ponies under 10.2hh (so that’s the little guys) and one for 10.2hh to 13hh ponies. It is a fun day for all there were even visitors from the Counties Club who made their way up to join in the action at the Kumeu Trotting track. Contestants including ponies were dressed in purple, dubbed Purple Day drivers drew a pony which was to be presented and paraded in purple. What a vision of violet it was! A parade was held at 10am to judge the violet victor so any unsafe items could be removed once racing commenced. It certainly brought the creative and competitive flair out in contestants as children were on track working on their steeds by 8.30am hoping to gain that winning edge Judges were Sue and Chelsea Thorowgood from Saddlery Warehouse who were amazed with the artistic flare of the children and the work they had put in. There were cowboys, fairies, a Zorro, as well as purple wigs on both ponies and drivers. Ponies had purple hooves, purple ribbons, purple glitter, if it was purple they had it even parents joined in and came in purple clothing. The prize for best purple person and their pony went to Jamie Harrison and Delightful Eddie, second place went to Caitlin Schneider driving Boris and third place went to Linda Pringle driving Ruff Rufus. All three made a lovely lavender line up! So onto the two main events of the day the Kumeu Cups the bigger ponies raced over a distance of 800m with line honours going to Erin Gale driving Monet. The smaller ponies raced over 400m and this hotly contested event was won by Millie... driving Rocococo the winners received the Cups as well as ribbons in what colour... you guessed it purple! That was not the end of the day’s festivities there were ladies, novice drivers even trainers races and all were keenly contested! The Kumeu Fun Day is a great opportunity to allow all their supporters to take part and it gives all the children a chance to get ribbons including their novice drivers. Hopples – Check out the Lilac lads and ladies at www.kidzkartz. - This is also the best place to find out more information on Kidz Kartz in Kumeu which is super cool!

Dylan Makes it a Double! Waikato horseman Dylan Ferguson defended his 2011 title to be crowned the winner of the 2012 Lizzie of Rossland’s NZ Kidz Kartz Rising Stars Driver Series. A fantastic finale to his Kidz Kartz driving career as he looks to make the transition to the junior driver ranks. Lizzie of Rosslands NZ Kidz Kartz Rising Stars Drivers Series was the brain child of Anne Phillips, and entails 12 chosen representatives from Kidz Kartz Clubs around New Zealand competing on different ponies for points to secure the championship title. Hosted by the Counties Kidz Kartz Club with races staged at Alexandra Park it is a competition to test the skills of drivers as they must drive a six different ponies (all with their own tricks) over the six race series. Points are awarded for first right back to last position and the winner is the driver who has accumulated the most points throughout the series. So how did the name Lizzie of Rosslands NZ Rising Stars Drivers Series come about? The major sponsor Rossland Stud is operated by the Hoggard family who has been wonderful supporters of the drivers’ series and Kidz Karts in general since its inception.

Lizzie refers to their top race mare Lizzie Maguire who won close to $500,000 in stakes won both here in NZ and in Australia. “Lizzie” can now be found in the broodmare paddock and already has a 2 year old Art Major filly on the ground and is in foal to Bettors Delight. Further thanks must go to our driver sponsors, Tim Vince, Pony Power Stables, Noel Northcott and McFarlane Racing Stables. Dunstan Feeds also came up with sponsorship in the form of a bag

of feed for each of the 12 ponies competing in the series. Congratulations must go to all the drivers chosen to represent each of the Kidz Kartz clubs from throughout NZ. The series really tests the drivers as they are in an unfamiliar environment (especially South Island competitors) and driving ponies they have had little or no knowledge about. Each and every driver represented their club with pride and it was great to see a number of new faces in the series. So back to our champion Dylan Ferguson who has now won the title two years running. Asked if he would be back to defend his title for a second time, Ferguson said he was thrilled with what he had achieved in Kidz Kartz and was now was the time for him to concentrate on a harness racing driving career. Dylan in accepting his prize thanked all the sponsors who made the event possible as well as his parents (Peter and Wendy) and the other competitors and trainers who provided ponies to ensure the series was a success. The pony taking the leading points for the series was the Kumeu Club representative and the ever consistent “Ruff Rufus”. Sponsored by Pak’N’Save Ruff Rufus is a 10 year old brown pony who competed in the inaugural Kidz Kartz New Zealand Cup in 2009.

Brigit Hearn

- Planning & Operations Manager

What is your role at HRNZ and what does it involve? The Planning and Operations Manager has several different roles. I am second in charge to the Chief Executive of Harness Racing New Zealand (HRNZ) and I report directly to the Chief Executive and also the HRNZ Board on key issues. I do many different things, including - business planning, talking to people in the industry about their problems and working out how to solve them, project management which includes organising the annual awards night, equine training, helping with rule and policy setting, and health and safety. I also get to work with the Minister for Racing to improve race venues to make them safer and more enjoyable for people going to the races. What are some of the projects you are involved with? I am currently working on a number of different projects, including ‘race abandonment’. Last year we introduced a rule allowing for a race to be abandoned/stopped when a race accident happened and there is a chance that if the race were to continue driver/s and horse/s could be injured. We have formed a working group looking at what equipment and resources are needed to ensure that horsemen are aware that there has been an accident and that the race will need to be stopped. We are currently looking at something like a built in light and siren unit, similar to what you see in motor racing. How long have you been involved in Harness Racing and employed by HRNZ? I’ve been with HRNZ about 8 and a half years. Prior to that I was South Island Retail Manager for the TAB (New Zealand Racing Board).

What gives you the most satisfaction in your role? That’s a really good question. I’m very lucky that no two days are ever the same in my role, so having that variety is great. What gives me huge satisfaction is working with clubs and other people involved in the industry to improve the industry’s position. In particular, I get great satisfaction from starting a project, working with a variety of people and seeing it through to the finish. HRNZ have recently had their Annual Conference how did this go in your opinion? The Annual Conference is a great opportunity for people from different clubs and industry bodies to get together and discuss issues and concerns for the sport. Some of the things that were brought up at the conference were to: • look at other ways of bringing money into racing • look after our customers and owners • a race meeting is about putting on a fun event What do you think are some up coming positives in Harness Racing? • Working with clubs to have more races and have more horses race.

• Working with clubs and the New Zealand Racing Board to support wonderful on-course events such as “Christmas at the Races” and “Interislander Summer Festival” and a couple of new ideas that we’ll see trialled in the coming season. • Key events on the racing calendar e.g. Harness Jewels, Cup Day and the many regional meetings held all over the country. • Making race tracks better for all the people coming to the races, so they enjoy their experience more. • HRNZ’s new website and working on making it better for people in the harness racing industy to use. • Using Harness Racing TV to promote our sport (check it out on the front page of HRNZ’s website – www.hrnz. • Promoting our youth activities; cadet training, Gateway, “Harnessing Your Horsepower” our in schools programme, and Kidz Kartz. • The many volunteers and people who give of their time and passion to support the industry. If you could invite anyone for dinner (dead or alive) who would it be and why? There are a number of people I’d like to invite to dinner. Celebrity Australian Chef Curtis Stone, to whip up a stunning meal and he’s not bad looking to the eye! Kate and Wills (the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge). I’d earn a heap of ‘brownie points’ with my daughter, as she is a big fan of theirs! I would love to have a chat to them about the current Olympics (they are ambassadors for the Olympic Games), what it’s like for Kate as a commoner marrying into the royal family and it would be great to meet the future King. Nancy Wake, who served as a British agent during the later part of World War II. She became a leading figure in the marquis groups of the French Resistance and was one of the Allies' most decorated servicewomen of the war. Reputed to have had a wicked sense of humour. (Her autobiography “The White Mouse” is an excellent and inspirational read). Miranda Hart of hit comedy TV show “Miranda” fame, she is just hilarious. All Black Captain, Ritchie McCaw…what woman wouldn’t want him at your dinner table! And finally one of the best selling music groups of all time, ABBA, to provide the entertainment. Showing my age but who can forget the words to all those classic hits… “Knowing Me Knowing You”, “Money Money Money”, “Mama Mia”, “Dancing Queen”… etc

If you could visit any country in the world where would it be and who would you take? Goodness, that’s really hard, so many places I’d like to visit. It would have to be between Japan and Egypt. Egypt is definitely on my “bucket list”, would love to go there … ride a camel…see the pyramids...felucca down the Nile. I’d like to take Ritchie McCaw but he might not like the heat, so I’d take my family and friends. You have a daughter Gabriella took part in one of our Kidz Kartz courses did she enjoy this? She absolutely loved it. I was brought up on a farm so I have always had an involvement and love of animals. But Gabriella has been raised in the city and is a bit of a “townie” so she really enjoyed being able to get close to the ponies and experience the thrill of driving. Her favourite pony/horse is Sheree Tomlinson’s “Dimmy.” Do you currently or have you in the past owned any racehorses? Yes, I am currently an owner in the Met 5 Syndicate and I have a very small share (part of an ear and a hoof!) in a horse with some of my work colleagues. It is a great thrill seeing your horse race and more so when you have a win! What is your favourite moment in Harness Racing? Elsu’s win in the 2005 Nufarm Inter Dominion Pacing Championship in Auckland. I was fortunate to be on course at Alexandra Park that night. The crowd were amazing and the atmosphere ‘electric.’ A fantastic run from Elsu, who was cheered on to win by the huge crowd. Truly memorable.


The sire on the way up‌ KIDZ KARTZ

Noel & Wendy Kennard are pleased to support the Kidz Kartz by way of a % of each service fee from the 2012/13 season.

KLONDIKE KID A Grey Pacing Sire who has already sired a 2YO winner from his first crop of less than 40 foals

2YO Winner Lilly Jones

Contact Noel Kennard on 021 969 969

Hot2Trot Spring2012  

In this issue we look back at the 2011 NZ Kidz Kartz Trotting Cup, catch up with Zac Butcher and Natalie Rasmussen, review the Harness Jewel...

Hot2Trot Spring2012  

In this issue we look back at the 2011 NZ Kidz Kartz Trotting Cup, catch up with Zac Butcher and Natalie Rasmussen, review the Harness Jewel...