Call to make shearing an Olympic sport

23 Jan, 2012 03:00 AM
Comments
22
 

A MAJOR New Zealand farm lobby group wants shearing included as a demonstration sport at the Olympics and Commonwealth Games.

Shearing is now big news across the Tasman after Irishman, Ivan Scott, reclaimed the world eight-hour lamb shearing record when he shore 744 in a woolshed near Taupo on NZ's North Island and Waikato's Kerry-Jo Te Huia from Te Kuiti smashed the women's eight-hour solo lamb shearing world record by shearing 507 lambs on her local turf near Benneydale.

Jeanette Maxwell, Federated Farmers of NZ's meat and fibre chairperson, said shearers like Scott and Te Huia were supreme athletes whose skills and fitness should be showcased at major world sporting events like the Olympics.

"In 2008 it was mooted by Sports Shear Australia but surely the time has come to elevate shearing's sporting status to the ultimate world stage. One way would be to make shearing a demonstration sport at a Commonwealth Games, if not, the Olympics itself.

"If we can achieve that goal it will not just elevate the status of shearing and shearers, it will promote the huge effort that goes into producing first sheep then the wool," she said.

The 15th Golden Shears World Championships will be held in Masterton, NZ, in March.

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READER COMMENTS

Helen Clark
23/01/2012 9:27:11 AM

I totally agree with this idea. It would also raise the profile of the industry and hopefully attract more people into this career path.
marc
23/01/2012 9:38:06 AM

29th February the world titles start in Masterton NZ and there are 2 South Australians representing Australia. Shannon Warnest from Willalooka and for his first time representing Australia Nathan Meaney from Freeling, they are and have been in training since last year for the event where there are 35 countries from around the world competing.
Bushie Bill
23/01/2012 11:27:56 AM

Ya gotta be kiddin' right? What next? Ditch-digging and shovel-leaning for Olympic sport consideration?
THE FARMER
23/01/2012 12:05:48 PM

While i enjoy the sport shear events how many shearers would pass the drug and alcohol testing required .Do we need any more sports at a event that is fast becoming full of obscure sports and others like synchronized smiling . I await dodge ball .
Dave
23/01/2012 12:32:55 PM

Maybe we could have abusive,arrogant whinging as an Olympic sport,Bushie Bill.You would be an unbackable favourite for gold everytime,you wouldn't even have to train,you are such a natural at it.
X A Socialist
23/01/2012 1:02:56 PM

212 countries competing if they all send a team of 4 ( NZ will want to win Gold silver and bronzes ) that's about 630,000 sheep to be shorn ,there never going to be that many dry full wool sheep available in England .
marc
23/01/2012 1:27:56 PM

Some of these shearers would put elite athletes to shame with their work ethics and fitness levels, they train hard and shear hard. Good on ya Bushie you're obviously a couch potato, Shearing skills are unique.
Fairsnotfair in the bush
23/01/2012 3:36:52 PM

Surely we can't be serious? How would this competition run? * On union terms? *When the competitors decided they would actually turn up? *and what time they would start & finish? *What if one shearer/competitor actually shore sheep faster than the others? *What about clock-watching? Would it also be an Olympic event? Perhaps making life generally difficult for the "boss" would need to be a pre-requisite skill for entry...
Qlander
24/01/2012 10:17:07 AM

Seems to be a few comments here from people with no knowlage of the modern shearing industry. It's changed a LOT in the last 30 years people.
David
24/01/2012 3:42:47 PM

Not much Qlander. Just the use of wider combs and hydraulic presses. And the fact that shearers have got harder to find as people now preferr a cush job leaning on a shover or driving a truck. Shearing should be an olympic sport. We watch people throw, kick and hit balls around. Others throw spears, disc and hammers. Some jump off a board and bellyflop in the water. Shearing might make a nice change, as may be nice to see some productive men at last.
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