Results from the Aria Waitangi Day Sports Shears

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Results from the Aria Waitangi Day Sports Shears

“A bit of rain never hurt anyone” was the motto at the Aria Waitangi Day Sports Shears, which went ahead on Sunday, despite an afternoon deluge.

the latest tech news, global tech news daily, tech news today, startups, usa tech, asia tech, china tech, eu tech, global tech, in-depth electronics reviews, 24h tech news, 24h tech news, top mobile apps, tech news daily, gaming hardware, big tech news, useful technology tips, expert interviews, reporting on the business of technology, venture capital funding, programing language

Almost 50 shearers and woolhandlers braved the elements on the remote Central North Island domain to take part in one of New Zealand’s longest-established shearing competitions.

The Aria Waitangi Day Sports Shears dates back to at least the mid-1950s and is one of only a handful of competitions that have not been cancelled this year.

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The rain was so persistent that attention at the prizegiving was also focused on winners making their way to the open-sided stage, in anticipation of one tumbling down the slippery slope – however, most made it unscathed.

Te Kuiti farmer and champion woolhandler Keryn Herbert could remember only one or two competitions going ahead in anything like the same conditions in her 21 years of shows around the country.

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“It was commitment. No one was complaining about the rain. They just got on with it.”

No one complained about Covid-19 restrictions either, with scanning in and vaccination passes now normal practice at what few competitions are left.

Competition convener and New Zealand Shearing Contractors Association chairman Mark Barrowcliffe was determined the competition would go ahead under the Red light traffic conditions of the Government’s Covid-19 Protection Framework.

Results from the Aria Waitangi Day Sports Shears

Open woolhandling third placegetter Chelsea Collier, of Masterton, takes shelter with the timekeepers during the open shearing final. Photo / Supplied

Barrowcliffe was grateful for the support, from what became mainly a King Country event.

He knew the day would go ahead, even when advance entries were light, and was confident enough to still stage a children’s event, with four shearers aged from six to 12 years.

Herbert’s daughter and son, Ngahuia and Rikihana Salmon competed in the children’s event, along with six-year-old Rikihana Mason.

Mason came with his dad and open-class shearer Matene, from Masterton, where the boy goes to Fernridge School.

Rikihana Mason’s now the fourth or fifth generation in the Mason family to pick up a handpiece.

He cut his teeth watching dad all day in the woolshed, then practised all the blows and steps on his teddy bear.

Mason looked the part on the day, with dad helping him along on Stand 1 – at one stage looking back across his shoulder to see how the others were getting on.

Results from the Aria Waitangi Day Sports Shears

Rikihana Mason, (6) checks back at the opposition in the Aria Shears children's event on Sunday, watched by dad and open-class shearer Matene Mason. Photo / Supplied

After all, he’s an experienced shearer, coming in second last year when he was five.

However, this year Mason had to settle for fourth, as Tana Maguire, of Piopio, won the children’s event.

The youthfulness of some of the competitors, the rain, and the pandemic conditions tended to overshadow some of the main events.

Results from the Aria Waitangi Day Sports Shears

The lineup after the single-sheep children's shear, from first to fourth Tana Maguire, of Piopio (left), Rikihana Salmond and sister Ngahuia Salmond, of Te Kuiti, and Rikihana Mason, of Masterton. Photo / Supplied

Te Kuiti shearer Jack Fagan won the open shearing final, cutting-out the 20 second-shear sheep in 16min 33sec, more than a sheep clear of runner-up and Southern Hawke’s Bay-based Scotsman Gavin Mutch, and highlighting, that in the shearing record flock of Puketiti Station, at least something was in perfect condition.

Welsh shearer Phillip Price, from Powys, in his third season in New Zealand and working for King Country contractor Neil Fagan, won the senior final.

Keahrey Manson, of Piopio, won the intermediate final, the junior event was won by Tana Barrowcliffe, of Piopio, and the novice grade was won by Stella Allen, of Taumarunui.

Meanwhile, Herbert won the open woolhandling title and the senior winner was Vinniye Phillips, of Taumarunui.

Results from the Aria Waitangi Day Sports Shears

Te Kuiti's Jack Fagan finishes his 20th and last sheep in the open shearing final, beating the next quickest by 1min 22sec. Photo / Supplied

Tre Ratana Sciascia, of Feilding, added a junior win to his first win at Rotorua just seven days earlier, and the novice woolhandling event was won by Makayla Sarah, from Kawhia.

The judges also got something out of the day – a soaking.

With 41 of the scheduled 59 shearing sports competitions in the 2021-2022 season cancelled there are now only four events remaining.

These competitions are February 26, Apiti Sports (shearing, woolhandling), at Apiti; March 12, Mayfield A and P Show (shearing, blade shearing), at Mayfield; March 19, Warkworth A and P Show (shearing only), at Warkworth; April 15-16, Royal Easter Show (shearing only), at Auckland.

Results from the Aria Waitangi Day Sports Shears

Like sheep looking for shelter in the paddock, Aria Shears judges found shelter during the prizegiving ceremony. Photo / Supplied

Results from the Aria Waitangi Day Sports Shears at Aria Domain on Sunday, February 6, 2022:


Open final (20 sheep): Jack Fagan (Te Kuiti) 16min 33sec, 56.6pts, 1; Gavin Mutch (Scotland/Dannevirke) 17min 55sec, 57.45pts, 2; Mark Grainger (Te Kuiti) 18min 7sec, 59.75pts, 3; Matene Mason (Masterton) 18min 7sec, 60pts, 4.

Senior final (10 sheep): Phillip Price (Powys, Wales) 10min 31sec, 37.75pts, 1; Cory Barrowcliffe (Piopio) 11min 2sec, 40pts, 2; Forde Alexander (Taumarunui) 10min 58sec, 42.1pts, 3; Clay Harris (Piopio) 11min 57sec, 45.45pts, 4.

Intermediate final (6 sheep): Keahrey Manson (Piopio) 8min 17sec, 29.02pts, 1; Aidan Tarrant Piopio) 8min 29sec, 30.95pts, 2; Taelor Tarrant (Piopio) 8min 50sec, 32.33pts, 3; Matthew Smith (Otorohanga) 9min 25sec, 34.08pts, 4.

Junior final (4 sheep): Tana Barrowcliffe (Piopio) 8min 49sec, 36/2pts, 1; Sam Parker (Raglan) 9min 36sec, 41.3pts, 2; Cody Lambert (Palmerston North) 11min 22sec, 44.1pts, 3.

Novice final (1 sheep): Stella Allen (Taumarunui) 2min 57sec, 27.85pts, 1; Te Anna Phillips (Taumarunui) 4min 39sec, 27.95pts 2.


Open final: Keryn Herbert (Te Kuiti) 48.644pts, 1; Azuredee Paku (Masterton) 79.75pts, 2; Chelsea Collier (Masterton) 83.132pts, 3.

Senior final: Vinniye Phillips (Taumarunui) 66.18pts, 1; Te Anna Phillips (Taumarunui) 74.38pts, 2; Lee George (Hamilton) 81.66pts, 3.

Junior final: Tre Ratana Sciascia (Feilding) 49.03pts, 1; Alisha Te Huia (Marton) 49.794pts, 2; Atiria Barrowcliffe (Piopio) 59.87pts, 3.

Novice: Makayla Sarah (Kawhia) 45pts, 1; Sid Baker (Piopio) 63.06pts, 2; Ngahuia Salmond (Te Kuiti) 68.63pts, 3.

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