Te Huia is based in Forbes, NSW, and the holder of records set on both sides of the Tasman. He landed in Queenstown about 1.30pm Friday afternoon, before setting out on a 284km, three-and-a-half hour drive to South Canterbury for the 10-man event at the 50th anniversary Waimate Shears and New Zealand Spring Shearing and Woolhandling Championships.
It was a rewarding exercise, with Te Huia pocketing $2500 for shearing four lambs in 1 minute38.76 seconds as he breezed through the heats semi-final and final of a four-man shearing superstars showdown.
His performance included the 44.86 seconds he took for the final’s two lambs, beating World Championships All Nation Speedshear winner Jack Fagan, of Te Kuiti, by 1.26 seconds.
But it wasn’t for the money that Te Huia made his second trip home to New Zealand in a week. He is trying to keep his numbers up in the separate PGG Wrightson Wool National Shearing Circuit, the first prize for which includes a place in the New Zealand team for the 2018-2019 trans-Tasman series.
Te Huia said he’d needed extra points after a disappointing showing in the circuit’s compulsory finewool first round at the New Zealand Merino Championships in Alexandra last week, and he needed to get back to New Zealand to enhance his position in the second round, shorn in Waimateon Saturday. His $25-a-second effort last night was a bonus.
The open speedshear, shorn on full-wooled ewes and missing the elite shearers, was won by West Coast-based Geraldine shearer Paul Hodges, with a final time of 29.8 seconds. The seniorspeedshear was won by Gore-based Lionel Taumata, from Taumarunui, with a final time of 32.53 seconds for a single ewe. NZ shearer Darcy Tong, of Timaru, won the junior and intermediate grades cleanshear. World Champion wool handler Joel Henare, from Gisborne, won $1000 for some perfection in the Wool handlers’ Fleece Throw event.
The North Island competition season opened with two Speedshear events in Gisborne, with globetrotting local Tad MacNeilage winning an Open event at the Poverty Bay A and P Show during the afternoon, and 2010 Golden Shears and World champion Cam Ferguson, of Waipawa, claiming a winner-cheque in another contest at the Roseland Hotel, Makaraka.
Elite Speedshear final (two lambs): Stacey Te Huia (Dubbo/Te Kuiti) 44.86sec, 1; Jack Fagan (Te Kuiti) 46.12sec, 2.
Open Speedshear final (one ewe): Paul Hodges (Geraldine) 29.8sec, 1; Ethan Pankhurst (Masterton) 31.12sec, 2.
Senior Speedshear final (one ewe): Lionel Taumata (Gore/Taumarunui) 32.53sec, 1; Joel Malcolm (Invercargill) 33.14sec, 2.
Junior/Intermediate Cleanshear: Darcy Tong (Timarua) 1; Duncan Higgins (Havelock) 2.
Woolhandling Fleece Throw: Joel Henare (Gisborne/Dunedin) 1; Nov Kumeroa Elers (Mataura) 2.
Poverty Bay A and P Show:
Open Speedshear: Tad MacNeilage (Gisborne) 1; Bart Hadfield (Wairoa) 2; Ian Kirkpatrick jnr (Gisborne) 3.
Senior Speedshear: Shane Smiler (Gisborne) 1, David Kirkpatrick (Gisborne) 2, Johnny Crawford (Gisborne) 3.
Intermediate Cleanshear: Jayden Mainland (Wellsford) 1, Koi Ngarangione (Gisborne) 2, Carmen Smith (Pongaroa) 3.
Roseland Tavern Makaraka Speedshear:
Open Speedshear final: Cam Ferguson (Waipawa) 1; Ian Kirkpatrick jnr (Gisborne) 2; Tad MacNeilage (Gisborne) 3, Deano Smith (Gisborne) 4.
Senior Speedshear: Rozzi Philips (Gisborne) 1; John Crawford (Gisborne) 2, Shane Smiler (Gisborne) 3, Matt Ruru (Gisborne) 4.
Veterans Speedshear: Robert Matenga 1, Peter Gordon 2; Errol Tuhi 3; Mike Kerekere 4.
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