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- May 23, 2012
It was a battle of the sexes as winners of the second-annual SRS® Classic Shearing Encouragement Awards were announced today at the Dubbo Show.
Such was the quality of entrants, the Judging Panel could not separate the joint winners of the best up-and-coming shearer in the region, Emma Billet of Trangie and David Gordon of Dubbo. Rianne Miles of Gilgandra took out the wool handler gong.
The Awards, which are an initiative of the local SRS® Classic Ram Selling Group, were presented as part of the Invitational Parkdale Teams Shearing Event between New Zealand and NSW. They aim to help talented young shearers and wool handlers get ahead at a time when skilled labour shortages are becoming a real issue in the industry.
SRS® Classic Ram Selling Group Member, Don Mudford, whose daughter Tammy presented the awards, congratulated Emma, David and Rianne for being recognized as the ‘young guns’ of the shearing industry in the Central West.
“With the Merino industry resurgent on the back of good wool and meat prices, we recognize the importance of supporting the next generation of shearers and wool handlers to ensure they stay in the industry,” Mr Mudford said.
“It is great to see more and more females getting involved in the industry with an amazing passion for shearing, wool and the industry”.
The recipients of the annual awards received an open order of $1,500 (shared between shearers) and $750 (wool handler) to be spent on much needed gear and TAFE training. Nominations were provided by leading shearing contractors in the Central West region and sponsors included Shearing Supplies and Muddy’s Quality Shearing.
Mr Jim Murray from TAFE NSW said that the timing of the announcement could not have been better. “It is nice to see the SRS® Classic Group giving young people in the shearing industry a leg up. Even nicer that the winners were announced on the same day as the Teams Event,” Mr Murray said.
The SRS® Classic Ram Selling Group consists of seven Central West Merino breeders who work together to promote the many benefits of SRS® genetics. They are Bella Lana, Boxleigh Park, Glenwood and Mumblebone from Wellington; GullenGamble from Yeoval; Hilltop from Mudgee; and Parkdale from Dubbo.
The 8th annual SRS® Classic Ram Sale will be held on Saturday 13 October 2012.
Background - SRS® Classic Shearing Encouragement Awards Winners
Joint Winners of the Shearer Award
David Gordon Originally from New Zealand, David now lives in Dubbo. He has competed in many shearing shows in Australia and New Zealand and intends to compete in the northern hemisphere this year. He moved up into the intermediate grade this year and made 10 finals and 15 semi finals. David shows excellent maturity amongst the team and always displays a great work ethic. He has demonstrated commitment to the shearing industry through striving to achieve the best results for the farmer whilst always considering the welfare of the sheep.
Emma Billet Emma Billet has been shearing for 2 years and was recently involved in the first-ever all female shearing team. She is a clean and efficient shearer who is getting more skillful and quicker with every day she shears. Emma is keen to promote more women in the industry and rates her involvement in the all-female team as one of the best things she has done. She currently shears about 120 SRS® type plain bodied sheep per day.
Winner of the Wool Handler Award
Rianne Miles Originally from the Central Coast Rianne Miles now calls Gilgandra home and has been shearing with Muddy’s Quality Shearing since Easter 2011. She is a keen an eager worker who has quickly learned the necessary skills and tasks associated with wool handling. She is keen to learn about every aspect of the wool industry and is always good for a laugh. Rianne is eager to compete in more wool handling competitions to take her current skills further.
Photo of Award Winners
L to R: Tammy Mudford (Parkdale), Emma Billet, Rianne Miles, David Gordon, Bruce Taylor (Boxleigh Park)