Trifecta of Rongotea brothers aiming for FMG Young Farmer of the Year

Posted by Nadine Porter on 3 October 2016 | Comments

Nigel Will is aiming to make history in the FMG Young Farmer of the Year by being part of the first trifecta of brothers to compete at a Grand Final. 

The 30-year-old farmer from Rongotea has one last shot after finishing second and securing a spot in the Taranaki/Manawatu Regional Final at the Manawatu District Contest and Skills Day on Saturday. 

And brothers Michael who finished 5th at the Grand Final in 2005 and Chris who finished 3rd and 4th in 2009 and 2010 are right behind the Marton Young Farmer. 

Will grew up with the Contest having watched it on television from an early age. His parents met through Young Farmers and exposed their three sons to the prestigious event regularly.  

Last year Will very nearly completed the trifecta when he came runner up at the Regional Final but is confident he will perform a lot better this year. 

"It was a tough year with us taking over another farm and I had a staff member that left abruptly the week before the Regional Final so my head was not in the right place to compete." 

This time the Massey University Diploma in Agriculture graduate plans to take time off the farm to study with help from his brothers. 

However, he won't have it easy with first time entrant Will Taylor, 24, winning the Manawatu District final to earn his spot in the regional final. 

Taylor grew up on a small sheep and beef farm at Feilding and has been a New Zealand representative in smallbore rifle shooting. 

Currently a salesperson for a John Deere dealership, he has also had experience working in Australia during cultivation season. 

Surprised to have won, Taylor said he's got 'a lot' of study to do to get ready for the Regional Final particularly in technical theory challenges. 

The two will compete against six other contestants that will be found in coming weeks at the Taranaki/Manawatu Regional Final next April. 


 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 nigel will taraman