Luke takes out Wagin Woolorama Clean Shears
Gun shearer Luke Harding set a rapid pace and stuck clean blows to win the open class in Wagin Woolorama’s annual shearing competition for the third time in a row.
There was a strong field of competitors this year, with seven of the 27 shearing competitors taking home titles.
In the wool handling, Aroha Garvin won the open wool-handling competition, Demelza Iles took out the intermediate class, and George Burt won the novice class.
Dwayne “Dingo” Humes, won the clean shears senior class, while Robert Stewart won the intermediate and Grace Schoff the under-21 class.
Harding shore 8.75 sheep in 15 minutes 42 seconds in the open final to take the prize.
Mr Harding, who runs a shearing contractor business at Boyup Brook, is well known on the WA Competition Shearing association circuit.
It was the third year in a row he has won the open class, after first entering the section four years ago.
“It was the first shearing show back for 12 months because of COVID, so it was good to see everyone get involved again,” Mr Harding said.
“It felt good to be at a show and competing, let alone having a win.
“I knew I had to keep the pace up a bit; there are a few boys that are quick shearers, but I thought the quality of my shearing was a strength.”
Darkan shearing legend Don Spiers — who won the Perth Royal Show State open in 1984 — has sponsored the open class since that same year.
A former Wagin Woolorama competitor, Mr Spiers placed second in the first year of the competition before winning it the next year.
“I think there was a lot of high-quality shearing and it was good to see. I prefer the quality shearing over the speed because it reflects the industry better,” he said.
“I have been involved in shearing for 57 years after starting off as a shed hand when I was 14. I started contracting at 23 and was in the top six in WA for 12 years.
“I like to see a good show like this. Luke has won three times in a row now, so that is very impressive.
“People always take an interest in the event and love to see it. A lot of hard work goes into organising it.”
Shearing steward Wes Baker, of Busselton, also spent the day judging each class and said shearers had travelled from far and wide.
“We were pretty happy to have the event go ahead after all that COVID uncertainty a few weeks ago,” he said.
“The standard was very good; it was reasonably high in all divisions. I was quite impressed with how the boys sheared the sheep.
“We were down on numbers in the open category, but overall we are very happy.
“The event went off extremely well considering the complications of the restrictions.”
Competitors travelled from as far as Dowerin and Cunderdin, and also hailed from closer to home.
1st: George Burt
2nd: Oaklee Treasure
3rd: Jack Waters
1st: Grace Schoff
2nd: Tristan White
3rd: Kurt Reynolds
1st: Robert Stewart
2nd: Clayton McKellar
3rd: James Read
1st: Dwayne Humes
2nd: Vaughn Baker
3rd: Jesse Fletcher
1st: Luke Harding
2nd: Scott Maugher
3rd: Callum O’Brien
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