Three members of Kaipara Young Farmers Club have won their way into the regional finals of the FMG NZ Young Farmer of the Year competition, after an almost clean sweep at the Upper North district contest and skills day, held at Ruakaka on November 3.
Daniel Richards, Jack Bellamy and Brody Goodmon came first, third and fourth respectively, after a day of hands-on, theory and technical farming challenges, ranging from stock handling and judging, through digging and fencing, to general knowledge tests.
Daniel, who is 21, manages his parents’ 300-cow dairy farm in the hills at Tomarata. He said the win was a surprise, but he was looking forward to his second attempt at the regionals.
“I wasn’t expecting to win,” he said. “But this will be my second regional final. I wasn’t sure what to expect the first time, but I have a lot more confidence now.”
Jack, 18, lives on his parents dairy farm off Cullen Road at Waipu, while 20-year-old stock driver and fencer Brody works on his family’s beef farm just west of Wellsford.
All three go forward to the Northern Regional Finals, which will take place in Warkworth on March 16, the final qualifying event for which takes place at Clevedon A&P Show this Saturday, November 17.
In addition to the NZ Young Farmer of the Year competition, Jack and Brody will be taking part in the NZ Young Farmers National Fencing Competition in Christchurch in February, after winning the northern regional contest last month. Daniel and Shane Richards came second in that event.
Kaipara Young Farmers Club meets at 7pm on the last Thursday of each month at the Three Furlongs Bar & Grill in Kaiwaka. New members welcome – no farming experience necessary.
Info: Kaipara Young Farmers Club on Facebook.