Battle for TeenAg and Young Farmer titles

Jackie Harrigan

Despite the dull and cold weather in Feilding on Friday, competition was running hot at the practical and Agrisports day of the Young Farmer Grand Final at Manfield.

The TeenAg and Agrikids finalist from around the country competed through very cold winds – and Agrikids finalists had to bob for apples and then drink a bottle of cold water through lamb’s teats to finish their Agrisports race-off. Well done the Geraldine Hillbillies for winning that part of the contest.

The Teen Ag contestants were posed some interesting challenges, among them the opportunity to start up and control a New Holland Forage Cruiser, with a wickedly toothy grin – and delve inside a (mock) calving cow and then alert the vet to the presentation. Throughout the day they also had to build a wee farmlet, with a rail fence, raised garden bed and scarecrow completing the picture.

The bar seems to lift each year in these contests, with more complex and skilful challenges matched by an ever growing skill and confidence level among the contestants.

It’s great to see so many poised and skilled young people fronting up to represent their schools and the growing capability within the sector, which bodes well for the future.

The Young Farmers were into day two of a set of complex challenges, testing every facet of their farming knowledge, fitness and Young Farmer skill set. With the speech and quiz night, technical section and agribusiness challenge done and dusted, today’s practical modules and Agrisports sections add more valuable points and the winner is announced at Saturday night’s Grand Final Ball. After three days of tough competition, it’s the extreme survival event of the agricultural world.

Well done to all the finalists, they all deserve a medal I reckon.

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