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Shearing record hopefuls warm-up

December 1, 2019.

Southland shearer Megan Whitehead, in only her second competition, waiting for the Taranaki Shears Senior final in Stratford on Saturday. PHOTO/Jills Angus Burney.

Just for the record – hopefuls warm-up at Taranaki Shears

The Taranaki Shears at the Taranaki A and P Show on Saturday became something of a training ground for two of the summer’s Woirld shearing record attempts.

Among the good entry of 49 shearers across the five grades were Waikato shearers Kaleb Foote, Coel L’Huillier and Daniel Langlands who on December 23 tackle a 3-stand 8hrs lambs record, and Southland shearer Megan Whitehead, one of four preparing for a rare women’s multi-stand record, on lambs, a month later.

Former New Zealand Shears Intermediate champion Foote had his best Open-class result with third-place behind winner Mark Grainger and runner-up Jack Fagan.

But the feature effort came from the 23-year-old Whitehead, finishing fourth in the Senior final, only her second competition and her first on ewes. She also was third in a Senior speedshear a few hours later at Stratford’s Commercial Hotel.

Her only previous competition was when third in a Senior lambshearing final at the Southern Shears in England earlier this year, during part of her shearing globetrotting which has so far also taken her to Italy and Australia.

Raised in Gore, she is however just three weeks into her first North Island mainshear season, working for Whangamomona contractor Dean Herlihy as she prepares for the record bid, to be made with sometimes regular co petition shearer Sarah Higgins, Amy Silcock and Natalya Rangiawha.

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Mangamahu Valley shearer Simon Goss had an expected fifth Senior win this season, finishing the 8 sheep in 8min 56sec, two minutes ahead quicker that White head who was third to finish, concentrating on getting the quality and job to the standard she’ll be wanting during the record in front of five judges appointed by the World Sheep Shearing Records in the Waihi-Pukawa woolshed near Turangi in January 23.

Goss won by more than 9pts from runner-up Kieran Devane, of Taihape.

Grainger and Fagan battled over the lead in the 15-sheep Open final, with Grainger shearing by 12 seconds and with the better quality outside points winning by 2pts and regaining the title he had won at Stratford two years ago.

Daniel Biggs, also of Mangamahu, continued his winning form with an Intermediate fical by 2pts from Cory Barrowcliffe, of Piopio, with third place going to Phil Price, of Old Radnor in Powys, Wales, while Aam Jones, also from Wales, won the Junior final, by more than 8pts from runner-up Reghan Ngarotata, of Piopio.

RESULTS from the Taranaki Shears at the Stratford A and P Show on Saturday, November 30, 2019:

Open final (15 sheep): Mark Grainger (Te Kuiti) 13min 7sec, 44.35pts, 1; Jack Fagan (Te Kuiti) 13min 19sec, 46.35pts, 2; Kaleb Foote (Piopio) 13min 52sec, 52.7333pts, 3; Marshall Guy (Kaeo/Taumarunui) 12min 49sec, 55.3833pts, 4.

Senior final (8 sheep): Simon Goss (Mangamahu) 8min 56sec, 32.925pts, 1; Kieran Devane (Taihape) 11min 36sec, 42.3pts, 2; Wilson Weeks (Apiti) 10min 47sec, 42.475pts, 3; Megan Whitehead (Gore) 10min 57sec, 44.1pts, 4.

Intermediate final (6 sheep): Daniel Biggs (Mangamahu) 7min 58sec, 32.0667pts, 1; Cory Barrowcliffe (Piopio) 8min 36sec, 34.0667pts, 2; Phil Price (Wales) 8min 40sec, 39.1667pts, 3; Topia Barrowcliffe (Piopio) 9min 11sec, 39.8833pts, 4.

Junior final (4 sheep): Sam Jones (Wales) 8min 1sec, 32.05pts, 1; Reghan Ngarotata (Piopio) 8min 19sec, 40.45pts, 2; Heath Barnsdall (Piopio) 9min 24sec, 40.95pts, 3; Josh Hopkirk (Masterton) 7min 37sec, 44.1pts, 4.

Novice final (1 sheep): Josh Devane (Taihape) 5min 1sec, 33.05pts, 1; Fynn Redshaw (Urenui) 5min 56sec, 40.8pts, 2; Regan Lark (Tahora) 4min 4sec, 60.2pts, 3.

Teams (6 sheep): Jordan Contracting 1, 6min 46sec, 1; Jordan Contracting 2, 7min 10sec, 2; Kevin Harley, 7min 52sec, 3; Reece Munroe Shearing, 7min 53sec, 4; Dean Herlihy Shearing, 8min24sec, 5.


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