Timaru contestants hot favourites to make FMG Young Farmer of the Year Grand Final

Posted by Nadine Porter on 8 November 2016 | Comments

A Timaru contestant looks set to be heading for the Grand Final of the FMG Young Farmer of the Year following a dominant showing in the District Contest and Skills Day during the weekend. 

Two Milford/Clandeboye competitors Caleb Strowger and Toby How finished first and second and earnt the right to represent the Timaru District at the Aorangi regional final on the 25th February. 

The friends both play rugby for Geraldine and have chalked up a good level of experience previously in the Contest but come February their mate-ship will be tested as they fiercely compete to for their dream of winning the FMG Young Farmer of the Year. 

25-year-old Caleb began competing when he was 15. He has competed in four regional finals in which the winner of each of those finals went on to win the overall title. 

That experience and the Dairy NZ consulting officer's technical skills developed from completing a Bachelor of Agricultural Science with Honours will make him very hard to beat. However, 29-year-old Toby How is in his last year of competing and is determined to devote himself to studying and preparing to ensure he wins the coveted Aorangi title. 

Toby came third in the Aorangi regional final last year. That same final was won by Athol New who went on to win the Grand Final. 

A fencing contractor, Toby also studied at Lincoln and gained a Bachelor of Commerce in Agriculture but is perhaps best known for winning the Rural Bachelor of the Year in 2014. 

The two are hot favourites to win the Aorangi regional final and to go on and bring the title home for Timaru at the Grand Final in July next year. 


How the FMG Young Farmer of the Year works: 


400 contestants will compete in 22 District Contest and Skills Day nation-wide where they can opt to 'Have a Go' which means they cannot progress to the next level – or they can enter competitively. 

56 contestants will compete in seven regional finals from Northern, Waikato-Bay of Plenty, Taranaki-Manawatu, East Coast, Tasman, Aorangi, Otago-Southland from February to April. 

The seven winners of the regional final will go the Grand Final in July 2017 at Manawatu. 

In 49 years only three females have ever made the Grand Final: 

Denise Brown who placed seventh in 1981 

Louise Collingwood who was RUNNER UP and third place in 2003 and 2001 

Katherine Tucker placed seventh in 2012 

For more information please contact Nadine Porter, Communications Manager on 021 2140703 or email nadine.porter@youngfarmers.co.nz