Merino fleece judging champion Will Gibson, of Middlemarch
(centre), flanked by third place-getter Ashley Ayles (left)
and runner-up Josh Taylor, both of Australia, at the Royal
Perth Show. Photo supplied.
Young Otago stock judge Will Gibson took on the
Australians - and won.
Will (19), who is in his first year at Lincoln University,
recently competed in a junior judging competition, for those
under 25, at the Royal Perth Show in Australia.
He was "stoked" to win the merino fleece judging and be
placed fourth in the meat and wool breed judging.
Will, who has enjoyed considerable success in stock judging
competitions in recent years, was competing in Australia for
the second year, although for the first time in those two
He represented New Zealand at the Royal Adelaide Show last
year, in the junior merino judging competition.
When he headed over there, he was keen for at least a placing
and to improve on his previous performance.
He was the first New Zealander to win the fleece judging
competition and he was impressed with the fleeces on display.
In the sheep judging, he was faced with Border Leicesters and
Poll Dorsets to judge and he particularly enjoyed judging the
four Border Leicester rams, as it was a breed he had not had
much to do with.
Will, who has always had a strong interest in sheep and beef,
is studying towards a bachelor of commerce degree in
He was enjoying tertiary study and learning a lot of
He tried to get home to the family farm at Middlemarch as
often as possible and he was disappointed to have missed
He has his own flock of coloured merino sheep and a Hereford
cattle stud, and will be taking a contingent of both cattle
and sheep to the Canterbury A and P Show in Christchurch next
He has qualified in the beef judging for the national final
of the Royal Agricultural Society of New Zealand's junior
judging competition, which is being held at the Royal A and P
Show, hosted by the Waikato A and P Association, in Hamilton
later this month.
Although he was keen to compete on the event, it would depend
on university commitments, he said.