“I think the biggest mistake people make is not believing in themselves enough”

Horse racing trainer Natalia Lupini rents a small yard on the outskirts of Banbridge in Gilford since 2014. The odds of her becoming a successful trainer were stacked against her from the start nonetheless she has proved all the sceptics wrong.

Fresh from her big race success on Tattersalls 2000 Guineas day at the Curragh racecourse with stable-star ‘Blairmayne’, Lupini’s small but proficient yard in Co.Down is going finally getting noticed by a wider audience; “I didn’t have a good start to my career as the horses were all sick, it was 2016 before my initial winner with Alnahar. Blairmayne won twice that year too. it’s now a case of all systems go and making up for all the lost time” emphasised Lupini.

Blairmayne crossing the line first

Lupini is originally from Milan in Italy, nobody would have forecasted she would be living this life over here in Ireland, she didn’t come from a horsey upbringing. Her affection for horses and racing started during a summer holiday in the city of Siena when her family went to watch the Palio, the renowned race in the square concerning ten horses and riders, bareback and dressed in the appropriate colours, representing ten of the seventeen provinces.

Speaking of her instantaneous attraction to the Pailio, Lupini insisted “When I first witnessed the magnificence of the Palio I had an aspiration to pursue a career in racing. The sheer exhilaration of this unique street horse race is something words can’t describe.

My parents supported me in any way they could to give me a greater understanding of horses. The local pony club was significant in my introductory acquaintance of the superb animal, this was where I learned to ride and handle horses correctly. Then as I got older, I spent my summers in some of the big training yards in Milan working with thoroughbreds” added Lupini.

Self-motivated Lupini was nineteen-years-old she decided to leave her home-land of Italy to move to Ireland with a single-mindedness of following her aspiration of becoming a racehorse trainer; “When I came to Ireland, I was very fortunate that I fell in with the right people, who supported me and still are behind me to this very day. I took a titanic gamble in becoming a trainer when I was so young, as racing in Ireland is very ultra-competitive and everyone has their specific elected trainer but thus far things are going exceedingly well for me, almost too well” Joked Lupini.

Based in the Banbridge countryside Lupini has ten horses in training, including the likes of Abstraction, Blairmayne and a two-year-old colt, Una Vis which is worth keeping an eye on throughout the season, he is displaying all the right signs at home to assume he is going to be well above average.

Speaking of the superiority of the horses under her care, Lupini stated “I could have another twenty horses in my yard however I am more targeting quality over quantity. I want all my cherished owners to be in with a chance of winning, I’m not attracted in running our horses for the sake of it. We want to be there with a winning chance”.

The key to Lupini’s success is to keep things unpretentious. She is a great believer in happy horses are healthy horses; “I love to give every horse the best possible chance to prove itself on the racecourse and sooner or later my intent is to improve the eminence of the horses in the yard every year in order to take part in the superior stage” commented Lupini.

Everyone involved in horse racing grasp it is majority a losing sport, you will lose a lot more than you will ever win. How does Lupini deal with the bad days?; “I am not good at dealing with bad results but I have been told I am now becoming more mellow with age. Unfortunately, you just have to take it on the chin and the following day where is possible assert any problems, learning from any mistakes, this the only way to progress.” stated Lupini.

Being a racehorse trainer is a twenty-four-hour-a-day job and some more but how does this go-getting young trainer relax when her day’s graft is done? “food, wine and fine arts are some of my preferred interests away from horse racing though in this chaotic job getting any time off is sporadic occurrence however on the other hand I am fortunate enough to be in such a favourable position, so I definitely wouldn’t be complaining about anything anytime soon” jested Lupini.

We put an all significant question to this diligent woman, what does the future hold for Natalia Lupini in in which she rapidly responded; “Horse racing is a tough game and I am blessed to be encircled by so many genuine people; who have a great understanding of horses and willing to help me; I strongly agree with one of Kieran Fallon’s quotations in his book: “horses have always brought me solace, when I’m on a horse I’m happy. I am where I want to be.”. I really feel the same way about things.

Natalia Lupini may not be a home-grown hero yet this assiduous Italian woman is putting Co. Down on the horse racing map. Keep an eye out for her horses in the imminent future, she has a clear desire to win and she is fated for further successes.