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Rathkeale College Tops East Coast FMG Junior Young Farmer Of The Year

Press Release – Young Farmers

1st FMG JR YFOTY – Alex Wyeth (left) Jono Harris (right). A duo from Rathkeale College have taken out the title for 2021 East Coast FMG Junior Young Farmer of the Year 2021, after competing for four years in a row. Year 12 students Jono Harris, 16, …


1st FMG JR YFOTY – Alex Wyeth (left) Jono Harris (right).

A duo from Rathkeale College have taken out the title for 2021 East Coast FMG Junior Young Farmer of the Year 2021, after competing for four years in a row.

Year 12 students Jono Harris, 16, and Alex Wyeth, 16, topped the points table for the regional competition.

Meanwhile “the Crazy Chickens” from Ruahine School won the AgriKids competition.

The competitions for high school students in Teen Ag Clubs and primary school students were held at the Hawke’s Bay Showgrounds on Saturday (13th February).

They both ran alongside the East Coast FMG Young Farmer of the Year (FMG YFOTY) Regional Final.

Runner up FMG Junior Young Farmer of the Year was awarded to Thomas Fontaine and Jock Bourke, also from Rathkeale College.

Both teams have been invited to compete at the Grand Final in Christchurch in July.

Third place was taken out by Guy Von Dadelszen and Sam Parkes from Napier Boys’ High School. Von Dadelszen was also awarded FMG Junior Young Farmer competitor of the day.

Harris and Wyeth said the win was completely unexpected and they were quite surprised.

The pair have competed in the contest for the last four years but in different teams.

“It’s a good activity to do, it’s a good time with friends and agriculture is something we’re both passionate about,” Harris said.

Both from sheep and beef farms, the pair thrived in the practical aspects of the competition which involved chainsaws and cars.

Turning their minds to the Grand Final in Christchurch in July, they will compete against 13 other teams from across the country.

“We’ll put in a bit of hard work, study, get some advice from teachers and all sorts and try and learn what they’re going to throw at us,” Wyeth said.

Harris plans to head overseas working after finishing school meanwhile Wyeth has his sights set on Smedley Station and Cadet Training Farm.

AgriKids winners Riley Finucane, 12, Georgie Hogan, 11, and Gemma Barrow, 11, were also surprised with their win.

“I don’t think our parents could believe it either,” Finucane said.

All three had competed in the contest before, however never made it past the module phase.

The hardest part was the sack race, Georgie said.

“We kept falling out of the sack but the quiz was my favourite part,” said Finucane.

Second place AgriKids team was taken out by Chalkie Williams, Rubert Smith and Baxter Twist from Hereworth School.

A trio from Ongaonga School was awarded third, made up by Sam Lawson, Robert Merridew and Riley Dolan.

The top three teams have all been invited to the Grand Final in Christchurch in July where they will compete against 21 other teams from across the country.

The Grand Final runs alongside the FMG Young Farmer of the Year contest.

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