Press Release – Young Farmers
AgriKidsNZ and TeenAg Competitors were undeterred by the downpour as they battled it out in their respective Grand Finals held at Kumeu Showgrounds in Auckland today alongside the Practical Day of the ANZ Young Farmer Contest Grand Final.
Taking home the honour of the 2013 AgriKidsNZ Champions were ‘The Milky Bar Kids’ – Caleb Dymond, 12, Ricky Howells, 13, and Cameron Hasler, 12, from the Taranaki/Manawatu Region.
All three contestants were buzzing with excitement after the big win and are looking forward to the next level of competition in TeenAg. “We’re all really excited, this is awesome!”, commented Cameron. In preparation for the big event the team worked diligently on improving a number of skills such as first-aid, fencing, and general farming knowledge.
Second place went to Northern’s own ‘The Mean Green Farming Machine’, Jonty Morgan, Jacob Cook, and Buster Carr. And in third was ‘Southland P.E.A’, Abby Sim, Peter McLeish and Emma Freeman from the Otago/Southland Region.
“It’s an honour for these kids to represent their school and region at this rural challenge”, commented Contest Announcer Craig ‘Wiggy’ Wiggins. “They were so excited to be there that the rain didn’t matter at all”, Mr Wiggins said.
The Waikato/Bay of Plenty Region took home the TeenAg Grand Final Champions title this year by ‘The Udder 2’, James Robertson, 16, and Regan Kidd, 17.
The boys prepared for the Grand Final by working together as much as they could on the farm and James and Regan both cited solid teamwork and knowledge as paramount to the win.
As the two head off to Lincoln University they have high hopes for their competition futures. “I’m definitely going to join Young Farmers, and the ANZ Young Farmer Contest is definitely a goal of mine”, said James.
Second place winners were ‘Bren and Sezz’, Brenna Coleman and Sarah Greenwood representing Taranaki/Manawatu and in third place was East Coast’s team ‘The Stags’, Hamish Allen and Scott Maultsaid.
The AgriKidsNZ and TeenAg competitions are structured into seven 10 minute modules, including a written exam, and the top scoring seven teams continue on to the Race-Off challenge where contestants are given a series of tasks they must complete as fast as possible.
The modules for AgriKidsNZ this year ranged from cooking, gardening, and animal health to dairy taste testing, wool identification, and veterinary skills.
The Race-Off involved a potato sack race, churning butter, making a marmite sandwich, creating a flower arrangement in a gumboot, and packing potatoes.
The TeenAg competitors were challenged with stock judging, tractor safety, soil sampling, farm first-aid, a mock scholarship interview and identifying disease in animals and finding the appropriate treatment measures.
Their Race-Off involved a three-legged race, running with hail bails, bobbing for apples and making a scarecrow.
“Everything went really well today, all the competitors were really enthusiastic despite the weather”, commented AgriKidsNZ & TeenAg Project Leader, Josie Hampton. “The AgriKidsNZ and TeenAg competitions are growing in popularity all over the country, and they are a great way to introduce young people to the fun side of agriculture”, Miss Hampton said.