Catch Driver Cadet of the Year finalists announced

Harness Racing New Zealand is thrilled to announce the four finalists for the 2019 Catch Driver Cadet of the Year competition.

All four finalists have excelled in all of their regional challenges and we can now announce that representing Canterbury is regional winner, Cameron Kirkwood.

Travelling from Southland to contest the title this year will be Oliver Kite, the southern regional winner and the northern regional winner Kaleb Bublitz will also travel to Christchurch to compete in the national final.

The competition is in it's sixth year, and this year again along with the three regional winners, the next highest scorer from all of the competitors has advanced through to the final.

Alana Cameron took these honours and will be joining the reginonal winners.

All four finalists have displayed a comprehensive range of skills in their horsemanship, driving and all-round general knowledge to set the stage for an exciting and competitive final.

The final competition has been designed 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.

Each phase of the competition will be evaluated and marked and the cadets will earn points for each task based on performance, accuracy and speed.

The final will be held throughout Christchurch on Wednesday the 24th of July with the winner announced at the 2019 Annual Harness Racing Awards on Saturday the 28th of September, this year to be held at Addington Raceway.

Harness Racing New Zealand would like to sincerely thank Catch Driver for sponsoring the Cadet of the Year competition this year.

Founded by Ryan Clements of Canada, Catch Driver is just one Harness Racing game developed by The Farm Ventures with the aim to encourage more participation in the sport by youth world wide.

“We are beyond excited to partner with HRNZ in sponsoring the Cadet of the Year. We believe that many of the young men and women we see here competing for the Cadet of the Year will become tomorrow's stars in the sport,” said Clements.

“Our mission with Catch Driver is to engage a younger audience with this incredible sport, so it only makes sense that we partner with the next generation of athletes. We want to wish best of luck to all of those competing- you are the future stars of the sport!”

Clements has led the way in terms of developing his company ‘The Farm Ventures’, and was determined to prove that if you can give people the opportunity to play a harness racing game (either as a Catch Driver or in their other harness racing game, Off and Pacing) they will then take an interest in the sport.

“Most people who love sports are able to play some sort of game where they can get a virtual experience of being involved,” said Clements. “We have developed a game where our players can download the game to their phone for free and drive a horse in a race live against other people from around the world. We even have professional harness racing drivers from around the world playing on a regular basis too meaning fans can race against their idols.”

In the game each driver is randomly drawn a horse, and its best attributes are listed in the build up to the live race. This gives the player a chance to study if their horse is quick off the gate, has a quick sprint or has a lot of stamina.

“The game is purely about the sport and the art of driving a horse to its best strengths. We have no reference to gambling at all in any of our games,” explained Clements.

Catch Driver is free to download to your phone and free to play. You can download in your app store or follow this link 

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