Cadet of the Year

Run along the same lines as the NZ Young Farmer of the Year Competition the annual Cadet of the Year Competition has been designed to test the Cadets on a wide variety of skills and knowledge learnt over the course of their qualification.

The Regional stage of the competition is held in three locations throughout New Zealand; Northern, Southern and Canterbury. All Level 3 and 4 Cadets compete against each other in a bid to win a place in the Grand Final.

The Regional phase of the competition features a greater proportion of theoretical based activities. The Cadets will compete in tasks throughout the course of the day. These include a general knowledge exam, a round robin of equine related tasks and a timed driving challenge. Each phase of the competition is marked and the Cadets earn points for each task based on performance.

The winner from each Region along with the next highest scoring Cadet moves through into the Final. The final competition has been created to call on not only the contestant’s equine knowledge but to also challenge the finalists in a diverse range of practical, theoretical and technical tasks.

This is a fun-filled and challenging day for the finalists with the winner being announced each year at the Annual New Zealand Harness Racing Awards.

2019 winner Kaleb Bublitz with Natalie Gameson.

Past Winners


Winner - Kaleb Bublitz

Runner Up - Alana Cameron


Winner - Ellie Barron

Runner up - Luke Whittaker


Winner - Kieran McNaught

Runner up - Mark Johnson


Winner - Erin Isherwood

Runner up - John Morrison


Winner - Sean Grayling

Runner up - Jack Harrington


Winner - Dylan Stratford

Runner up - Jack Mackinnon

Industry Information

2019 Cadet of the Year

A short video recapping the finalists for Catch Driver Cadet of the Year.