Scoop has an Ethical Paywall
Work smarter with a Pro licence Learn More

Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search


Victory By A Shear's Breadth At Central Hawke's Bay Shears

Young Masterton shearer David Gordon scored his biggest Open final win when he beat former World and multiple Golden Shears Open champion John Kirkpatrick at the Central Hawke’s Bay A and P Show in Waipukurau on Saturday.

It came the hard way, with quality points used to break an otherwise dead-heat after the pair ended tied on a total of 65.45pts, each.

While Kirkpatrick had the quicker time (by 8 seconds) and the better points in judging of the 20 sheep in each pen, Gordon had what mattered – the better combined points for pen-judging and for the shearing on the stand.

It became just Gordon’s third Open win, in just his third season in the top class of a career which featured a Golden Shears Novice final win as a 13-year-old in 2010, saw him become what is thought to have been the first shearer to win in all 5 classes in New Zealand, and which saw him in the Wools of New Zealand Shearing Sports New Zealand team which shore tests against Scotland and Wales in the UK in July.

It could have been the 190th win for Kirkpatrick after 30 years in the Open-class, which started in 1994 with Golden Shears Intermediate and Senior titles already behind him, led to 4 Golden Shears Open titles and in 2017 made him World Champion.

But he’s now gone 19 finals without a win since claiming the Waimate Spring Shears title three years ago, although, now in his early 50s, he’s still good enough to reach the Golden Shears Open final, as he did in March when the event returned after two years of cancellations.

Advertisement - scroll to continue reading

Are you getting our free newsletter?

Subscribe to Scoop’s 'The Catch Up' our free weekly newsletter sent to your inbox every Monday with stories from across our network.

In a sport where events are often decided by hundredths of a point, ties are rare, it having been a first for Kirkpatrick, although he was third when Taranaki shearer and 2008 World champion Paul Avery pipped Hawke’s Bay gun Dion King on quality points at the Southern Shears in Gore in 2007 and again when New Zealand-based Scotland international and 2012 World champion Gavin Mutch got the nod over Hawke’s Bay gun and 2014 World champion Rowland Smith at Wairoa in January this year.

Shearing Sports New Zealand chairman Sir David Fagan, of Te Kuiti, won more than 640 finals in an Open-class career spanning more than 30 years, but says he never experienced such a tie.

Third on Saturday was son Jack Fagan, a week after winning $15,000 in a speedshear in West Australia and on Saturday the first to finish, shearing the 20 sheep in 18min 25sec, pipping Kirkpatrick by just 3 seconds, and 4th was Hawke’s Bay-based Brook Hamerton, from Northland, shearing in an open final in New Zealand for the first time.

Meanwhile Te Kuiti’s Keryn Herbert won the Open woolhandling title, having endured 11 finals without victory since her last win in February 2022 before getting the 53rd win in an Open-class career now in its 21st season.

Runner-up in the Golden Shears Open final in March, she had to be on-song to get the red ribbon on Saturday, claiming a narrow win over runner-up and 2023 New Zealand World Championships representative Ngaio Hanson, who is still chasing her first Open win.

Gordon’s sister, current New Zealand transtasman team member Cushla Abraham, was third while fourth was Jasmin Tipoki, of Napier.

In other shearing finals, Gisborne shearer Te Ua Wilcox had his second Senior win of the season with a 1.05pts margin over runner-up and Hawke’s Bay and Manawatu shows winner Forde Alexander, of Taumarunui, and the Intermediate final was won by Tini Papanui, of Feilding, 7pts clear in turning the tables on Gisborne shearer Dylan Young, who won at Feilding seven days earlier,

Lachie Cameron, of Hunterville, had a winning margin of over 8pt in the Junior final, and the novice event, which had 15 entries, was won by Harry Peacock, of Waipukurau.

In other woolhandling events Tatijana Keefe, from Raupunga scored her third Senior win of the season, the Junior final was won by Kelly Barrett, of Kawhia, and Kaivah Cooper, of Napier, continued a successful season with a Novice woolhandling win, to go with four Junior shearing wins in previous weeks.

The competitions attracted 107 entries, comprising 70 in shearing and 37 in woolhandling, making it the biggest shearing sports show of the five in the North Island so far this season.

It was the 11th event in a schedule of 59 on the Shearing Sports New Zealand calendar for 2023-2024.

The New Zealand Corriedales shearing and woolhandling championships will be held at the New Zealand Agricultural Show in Christchurch on Thursday and Friday, the shearing-only West Otago A and P Show Shears are at Tapanui on Saturday, and there will be shearing only at the Taranaki Sshears in Stratford and the Nelson A and P Show on November 25.

December 2 will see the last competitions before Christmas, with shearing only at the Whangarei show and shearing and woolhandling at the Rotorua A and P Show at Ngongotaha, as it moves from a long-standing late-January date to the new scheduling in early December.

Results of the Central Hawke’s Bay A and P Show shearing and woolhandling championships at Waipukurau on Saturday, November 11, 2023:


Open final (20 sheep): David Gordon (Masterton) 18min 36sec, 65.45pts (quality 9.65 penalty points), 1; John Kirkpatrick (Pakipaki) 18min 28sec, 65.45pts (quality 10.05 penalty points), 2; Jack Fagan (Te Kuiti) 18min 25sec, 70.15pts, 3; Brook Hamerton (Ruawai/Hastings) 19min 13sec, 70.2pts, 4.

Senior final (10 sheep): Te Ua Wilcox (Gisborne) 11min 6sec, 42.3pts, 1; Forde Alexander (Taumarunui) 10min 31sec, 43.25pts, 2; Laura Bradley (Woodville) 11min 28sec, 44.6pts, 3; Bruce Grace (Wairoa/Napier) 13min 4sec, 50.4pts, 4.

Intermediate final (6 sheep): Tini Papanui (Feilding) 8min, 33.1667pts, 1; Dylan Young (Gisborne) 8min 40sec, 40.8333pts, 2; Michael Buick (Pongaroa) 9min 53sec, 42.8167pts, 3; Louis Coombe-Gray (Waipukurau) 7min 38sec, 42.9pts, 4.

Junior final (4 sheep): Lachie Cameron (Hunterville) 11min 52sec, 42.6pts, 1; Tom Kerley (Wairoa) 12min 31sec, 51.05pts, 2; Jodiesha Kirkpatrick (Gisborne) 12min 16sec, 58.3pts, 3; Maureen Chaffey (Pongaroa) 11min 46sec, 61.05pts, 4.

Novice (1 sheep): Harry Peacock (Waipukurau) 4min 21sec, 32.05pts, 1; Grady Collis (Tauhoa) 6min 30sec, 35.5pts, 2; George Prouting (Dannevirke) 4min 7sec, 36.35pts, 3; Phebe Rayner (Motueka) 4min 56sec, 37.8pts, 4.


Open final: Keryn Herbert (Te Kuiti) 149.8pts, 1; Ngaio Hanson (Eketahuna) 153.2pts, 2; Cushla Abraham (Masterton) 158pts, 3; Jasmin Tipoki (Martinborough/Napier) 205.6pts, 4.

Senior final: Tatijana Keefe (Raupunga) 74.2pts, 1; Amy Bell (Weber) 83pts, 2; Ashleigh Ostler (Martin) 140pts, 3; Vinniye Phillips (Taumarunui) 158.2pts, 4.

Junior: Kelly Barrett (Kawhia) 101.6pts, 1; Jodiesha Kirkpatrick (Gisborne) 107pts, 2; Makayla Neil (Piopio) 111pts, 3; Mere Maraki (Flaxmere) 120.2pts, 4.

Novice: Kaivah Cooper (Napier) 61.6pts, 1; Capree Wallace (Taihape) 96pts, 2; Leila Tipoki (Napier) 97pts, 3; Gemma Buick (Pongaroa) 113pts, 4.

© Scoop Media

Advertisement - scroll to continue reading
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines



  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland

Join Our Free Newsletter

Subscribe to Scoop’s 'The Catch Up' our free weekly newsletter sent to your inbox every Monday with stories from across our network.