Pederick, Showdown show how it's done

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Bob GarnantCountryman
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In support of the rural community, Wellard Rural Exports conducted its fifth annual Star of the West Campdraft at the weekend at Boar Swamp, Pinjarra.

The event, which brings competitors from all parts of the State, had more than 575 entries, all competing for top honours among their peers.

After the heat of Saturday's high temperature started to cool down, the early evening drafting action promised some red hot action.

It was go-for-broke in the one-run Meat and Livestock Australia Restricted Open, with only top point getters qualifying for the final.

It was left to Brunswick drafter Joe Pederick, who was riding Australian Stockhorse stallion Showdown, to take the win after scoring a two-round total of 170 points.

Second-place honours were tied between Frank Angel of Manjimup, and local Pinjarra drafter Annabel McLarty.

Pederick said he was very pleased with his fourth restricted win this year.

"The cattle were excellent and my horse responded," he said.

The three-day draft began on Friday with the Drakesbrook Encouragement Draft and it was Stefanie Retzlaff, who saddled up Floyd, who took the win.

Saturday finished off the 136-entry Boar Swamp Campdraft Club Maiden Draft, which placed Heath Stewart, of Bakers Hill, riding Salt River Limelight, on top.

"It was my five-year-old mare's second start and the young horse is the first progeny by our stallion, Prophecy," Stewart said.

Before Sunday's finals, the West Coast Wools Junior and Juvenile Draft competition champions were decided.

Darci Morris took out the junior event, riding No Sweat, while Jayden Panomarenko, riding Flying F Captain, was best out of the juveniles.

Round one of the 190-entry Mitchells Transport novice draft had Joe Pederick firing again with an 89-point ride on Gretel, but it was Bullsbrook drafter Rhys Morrissey, riding Breeze, who had two round scores of 88 and 90 to take the final win.

Morrissey, who was the campdraft co-ordinator, said the cattle were very fast and user friendly.

"This, being the fifth Wellard Star of the West Campdraft, the running went smoothly and champion points were well spread," he said.

The final event went down to the wire when Morrissey, riding Acres of Frost, and Pannawonica pastoralist Michael Percy were tied after three rounds in the Wellard Rural Export open draft.

While Morrissey and his stallion failed to complete the outside course in the run-off, Percy took hold of the reins of his Australian Stockhorse mare, Midge, and flew around the pegs and through the gate for an outright win.

"Cattle were great all weekend," Percy said.

Percy, who attended the draft with his son, Reg, runs 5000 head of cattle at Yalleen station and uses horses to draft the stock.

Wellard representative Harold Sealy said the success of the Calcutta event raised $1400 for Children's Leukaemia and Cancer Research Foundation and the Royal Flying Doctor Service.

Wellard managing director Mauro Balzarini said the event strengthened the company's bond with farmers and producers.

"It gives us an opportunity to showcase our commitment to the rural industry," he said.

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