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Young talent to be tested in Gore

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 14/03/13

Young talent to be tested in Gore

Eight of the best Young Farmers will be competing at the Otago-Southland Regional Final Saturday 23 March in Gore for the 2013 ANZ Young Farmer Contest.

Contest hopefuls will complete four different Challenges during the Practical Day at the Southern Field Days Site and then straight into the Evening Show at the St James Theatre.

By the end of the evening one contestant will have secured their spot at the Grand Final (16-18 May, Auckland) and their share of the Regional Prize Pool worth $13,000 thanks to ANZ, AGMARDT, Lincoln University, Ravensdown, Silver Fern Farms, Honda, and Husqvarna. The top prize is worth an impressive $9000.

It is set to be tight race for this round of eliminations. The ambitious participants all have strong backgrounds in the agriculture industry and plenty of experience to call upon.

Hamish Wright, 23, is a member of the Nightcaps Young Farmers Club and a previous Grand Final Committee member. Hamish is looking forward to competing against the best in the Region and hopes to run his own farming business one day. He is currently employed as an agri-manager with ANZ in Invercargill.

Fellow Nightcaps member Hayden Peter works as technical officer for a meat distribution company and leases his family sheep and beef farm where he would like to see his stud expand to one thousand ewes. Hayden, 30, made it through to the Grand Final in 2011.

New on the Contest scene is 30 year old Ben Gillespie. He has belonged to the Upper Manuherikia Young Farmers Club for just over a year. Ben leases a dairy farm at Omakau in Central Otago, and is working on improving the farm’s wintering and irrigation systems.

Dean Rabbidge, 27, is the current Chairman of the Wyndham Young Farmers Club; this will be his second time competing at the Regional level. Dean is a manager on his family sheep, beef, and dairy farm working towards an equity stake in the farm, and ultimately ownership.

Thirty year old Bruce Paterson is a long time member with Young Farmers and currently belongs to the Nightcaps Young Farmers Club. Bruce is a mixed stock farm owner near Otautau, working on finishing the development of his farm.

Treasurer of the Nightcaps Young Farmers Club, Simon Topham, will be competing at Regional Finals for the second time. The 24 year old is an equity sharemilker and is working towards maximizing his equity in the business.

Steve Henderson, 27, of the Waitane Young Farmers Club Chairman. The dairy farmer is looking forward to progressing to a larger herd and eventual farm ownership.

James Lawn, 23, is a member of the Clinton Young Farmers Club and an active member within the organization having held numerous positions at the District and Regional levels. James works as a consulting officer for Dairy NZ in South Otago and his future ambitions are set on a governance position within the agricultural industry in the future. This will be his third Regional Final.

Taking place alongside the Regional Finals are the AgriKidsNZ and TeenAg Competitions – where the promising younger contestants will be competing for a chance at the Grand Final in Auckland 16 - 18 May. The top three teams from each Competition will have the opportunity to progress through.

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 31 March 2013 8.30pm, exclusively on TVNZ Heartland.

For more information head to www.youngfarmercontest.co.nz

ENDS


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