The build-up to Canterbury Show week has begun with the Heartland Bank Young Auctioneers’ competition, held with the prime cattle competition at the regular sale day on Tuesday, November 7.
A field of 13 young auctioneers from around New Zealand took part – the biggest number since the competition began. The auctioneers were put through their paces with a theory test the day before and then each auctioned three lots of competition steers.
Rural Livestock auctioneer Mick Withers said the judges were impressed with the calibre of the contestants.
“The judges noted a lift in the quality and consistency of the auctioning and this competition has had an impact on that,” he said.
Contestants can enter as many times as they like, until they take the title, and for Hazlett Livestock agent Henry Miller from Kurau it was fifth-time lucky as he out-auctioned second placed Alex Horn from PGG Wrightson, Canterbury, and Karl Chitham from Carrfields, North Waikato.
Miller now has the opportunity to travel to the Sydney Royal Easter Show and sell as an exhibitor. This is a reciprocal programme and Justin Rohde from Nutrien Ag Solutions, Central Queensland, also auctioned at the Tuesday competition, as an exhibitor to showcase Australian auctioning. The competition was sponsored by Heartland Bank, the New Zealand Stock and Station Association and Bushbuck.
The prime cattle competition, sponsored by Progressive Enterprises and the Canterbury Saleyards Company, is always a popular event, with many farmers eyeing the prize. This year, 107 entries were spread across the six different categories with a wide range of breeds on show.
The single prime steer section was won by Te Aka Farm, Little River, with a Speckle Park-beef entry, while a pair of Simmental-Angus steers from Seaton Farming, Aylesbury, took out the pair of steers section and also went on to win Supreme Champion.
Seaton Farming also won the single heifer with a Limousin and the pair of heifers was won by Aschwood, Vanasch, West Melton, with two South Devon. The dairy-beef pair was won by Withers with Murray Grey-Friesian and the local trade section went to C & K Herbert, Scargill.
The livestock competitions continue during show week as sale stock are replaced with show stock.