The DeFilippi family are well known in the Harness Racing circles but their involvement in the Standardbred isn't limited to just racing, they are also heavily involved in the showing of Standardbreds.
This season so far has been a remarkable one for the DeFilippi's with success at almost every show they have attended. Julie DeFilippi describes the season as the best season they have had showing Standardbreds.
Currently the DeFilippi's have three Standardbred show horses; Santo, Eagles Nest and Nucleus VC.
Santo started his Inhand showing career in 2013 and has competed in 28 shows over 5 seasons. He has had numerous Champions at A&P Shows and has also competed at Horse of the Year. " Santo is broken into saddle now and is having a spell before another prep of ridden," Julie said.
With Santo looking to see what he can do under saddle the DeFilippi's started Inhand showing Eagles Nest, a seven-year-old Christian Cullen gelding. "Louie has competed in seven shows now and won Champion at all seven", explained Julie. The biggest win of these was at the New Zealand Agriculture Show and the South Island Premier Show. Louie will now head to Horse of the Year to see if he can attempt to win this as well and add to an already astonishing season.
The DeFilippi's also have a third Standardbred show horse who is fairly new to the game but has definitely taken to his life after racing well. Nucleas VC was retired from racing in August 2018 and has competed at two A&P shows winning Champion at one and Reserve Champion to Eagles Nest at the South Island Premier Show. "He is currently being broken in to saddle and will head to Horse of the Year in March as well," said Julie.
Although Julie has a lot to do with the horses; Daughter Mandy and Son In Law Brad lead the geldings in the ring. "It's a family thing and we all do our bit, it's not just a matter of pulling them out of the paddock and heading to a show – there is a lot of training, practicing, feeding, grooming and show prep that goes on before show day," Julie explained.
With such fantastic results throughout the whole season the DeFilippi Family have a good chance of doing well at Horse of the Year in March and Julie explains that winning at HOY in the Standardbred and Thoroughbred (they also show Thoroughbreds) would be the ultimate goal. When asked what advice Julie would give someone wanting to show their Standardbred it was quite simple really, "Do the work, have fun and be a good sportsman."
* Nucleus VC and Eagles Nest have also competed at the annual Standardbred Show on Saturday and took out the following: - Nucleus VC- Supreme Inhand & Reserve Champion Beginner Ridden. Eagles Nest - Supreme Inhand Turnout