Fierce competition set for New Plymouth

Posted by on 21 February 2014 | Comments

The Taranaki/Manawatu Regional Final of the ANZ Young Farmer Contest is set for next Saturday 1 March at Yarrow Stadium in New Plymouth.

The eight contenders will have to complete a variety of practical, physical and theoretical challenges throughout the day.  The modules will test their skills, strength and stamina and first to finish does not necessarily guarantee a win as quality of workmanship factors into the overall scores. 

After the practical challenges during the day the event moves to The Mayfair for the evening show and quiz round.

By the end of the night, one savvy Young Farmer will have secured their spot at the Grand Final to be held in Christchurch 3-5 July and their share of the $14,000 prize pool consisting of cash, scholarships, products and services from ANZ, Lincoln University, Silver Fern Farms, AGMARDT, Ravensdown, Honda, Husqvarna and Vodafone.

There is a wide range of skills and experience for this Regional Final and some friendly rivalry brewing amongst fellow club members.

There are two competitors representing the Central Taranaki Club; Roger Dettling, 26 and Jayden Harvey, 20.

Mr Harvey is a first time Regional Finalist and works as a farm manager at Kaponga.  He is working towards his goals of sharemilking and farm ownership and says his motivation for the competition is “beating Roger Dettling.”

Mr Dettling has competed in three district finals and this will be his second Regional Final.  He is employed as a contract milker in Stratford and his goals are to obtain a 50/50 sharemilking position for the 2014/2015 season. 

Pete Fitz-Herbert, 28, of the Marton Club, has a long competition history with four Regional Finals under his belt.  He works on his family’s sheep and beef farm in Northern Manawatu and is an avid multi-sport competitor having completed the Coast to Coast four times.  He aims to lease and develop his own farming business and views the ANZ Young Farmer Contest as an opportunity to learn something new and be pushed out of your comfort zone. 

This will be Craig Crampton’s first Regional Final.  The twenty-seven year old belongs to the Fitzherbert Club and works on a dairy farm in Foxton.  Mr Crampton is working towards his goal of an equity share in farming.

Representing the Opiki Club is Brad Lewis, 28. Mr Lewis made it to the 2012 Grand Final and currently works as a dairy farm manager at Levin. Mr Lewis holds a Bachelor of Agricultural Science and hopes to one day become a farm owner.

Cameron Black, 21, hails from the Massey University Club, and has competed at the district level three times previously; this will be his first Regional Final.  His ultimate goal is farm ownership and believes agriculture is an integral industry to New Zealand and offers a clear progression to self-employment.  Mr Black was recently awarded Massey’s top agricultural student award.

Also competing is first time Regional Finalist Fraser Laird from the Wanganui Club.  The twenty-six year old is a sheep, beef, deer and cropping farmer in a family partnership in Wanganui.  He is a driven individual and wants to own his own 14-15000 SU farm in the future – but not before he travels the world and conquers Mt Cook.

And lastly, Liam Richardson, 24, from the Alton Club is also in the running.  Mr Richardson holds a Bachelor of Commerce in Agriculture and manages a 550 cow dairy farm in Waverley.

He says the primary industry holds endless career opportunities and his goals are to progress to 50/50 share milking before he turns 30. 

Also in the midst of the action are the future Young Farmers at work – the AgriKidsNZ and TeenAg competitions will be running alongside the ANZ Young Farmer Contest.

And, be sure to tune in to ‘Road To The Young Farmer Final’.  The series, hosted by Mark Leishman, covers each of the seven Regional Finals and follows the seven top achievers who make it through to the Grand Final.  Catch all the action starting Sunday 18th May, 8.30pm exclusively on TVNZ Heartland.

For more information contact:

Ashley Cassin
ANZ Young Farmer Contest Events Leader
027 213 0048