Napier Boys’ High School dominates FMG Junior Young Farmer of the Year Grand Final

Posted by on 8 July 2019 | Comments

Tags: ,

Two Napier Boys’ High School students have been named the FMG Junior Young Farmers of the Year.

Finn Beamish, 17, and Matthew Halford, 17, took out the coveted national title in Napier on Friday night.

They were one of 14 teams from across New Zealand which competed in the prestigious grand final.

“It was awesome to get another crack at the competition. We’re both rapt that we won,” said Finn.

The pair came second in last year’s grand final in Invercargill and credit the experience with their victory.

“It was great to have been through the process before. It meant we knew where we needed to improve,” said Finn.

The Year 13 students took home $5,000 worth of prizes.

The event took place in cold and wet conditions and tested students’ practical skills and theoretical knowledge.

They had to install a farm water system using Hansen products, spot safety faults on a piece of agricultural machinery and sit an agri-business exam.

“It really enjoyed the module involving the New Holland police tractor,” said Finn.

“We had to drive a tractor towing a trailer loaded with silage bales and a police officer pulled us over to question us about road rules.”

A Massey University module on the sheep industry caught the pair by surprise.

“We weren’t expecting that. It was quite challenging. We had to identify different breeds of sheep and types of wool,” said Matthew.

Guy von Dadelszen, 16, and Macabe King, 16, who’re also Napier Boys’ High School students, took out second place.

“We’d really like to thank our agriculture teacher Rex Newman. We wouldn’t be where we are without him,” said Guy.

“He’s been setting us challenges to help grow our knowledge and organising opportunities to hone our practical skills.”

Jacob Price, 17, and Patrick Foley-Smith, 17, from Geraldine High School were third.

The award for Competitor of the Year went to Alex Fitzgerald from Te Awamutu College.

The overall prize pool for the FMG Junior Young Farmer of the Year was more than $9,000, which is the largest ever.

The event is a key part of the work being done by NZ Young Farmers to attract students into the agri-food sector.  

It’s supported by FMG, Ravensdown, Honda, WorkSafe, Zero Harm Farm, STIHL, Lincoln University, Massey University, Southfuels, Northfuels, Betacraft, New Holland, Hansen, Landcare Trust and Ospiri.