Sheep shearing competitors display talents at Balmoral Show 2017

Andrew Rea (front row middle) from Straid YFC was awarded first place in the YFCU Sheep Shearing Novice Competition. Stephen Wilson from Gleno Valley YFC (back row left) was awarded second place while Alexander Butler from The Glens YFC (back row right) was awarded third place. Also pictured is YFCU president James Speers (front row right) and David John from sponsor, Lister Shearing (front row left)
Andrew Rea (front row middle) from Straid YFC was awarded first place in the YFCU Sheep Shearing Novice Competition. Stephen Wilson from Gleno Valley YFC (back row left) was awarded second place while Alexander Butler from The Glens YFC (back row right) was awarded third place. Also pictured is YFCU president James Speers (front row right) and David John from sponsor, Lister Shearing (front row left)

Members of the YFCU displayed their skills at the association’s annual sheep shearing competition that took place on the Wednesday morning of Balmoral Show 2017.

The competition was held in association with the British Wool Marketing Board (BWMB), The Northern Ireland Sheep Shearers Association (NISSA) and Lister Shearing Equipment Limited and consisted of two sections – novice and advanced.

Front row middle: Jason McNeice from Collone YFC who came first in the YFCU Advanced Sheep Shearing Competition. Sean McCollum, The Glens YFC (front row left) was awarded second place and Jonathan McKelvey, Derg Valley YFC (front row right) was awarded third place. Also pictured back row is (left to right) is David John, from sponsor Lister Shearing, Patrick Allen from Moira Equestrian Centre who provided a cash prize for the best shorn pen of sheep to Jonathan McKelvey, Derg Valley YFC (who also came third in the advanced section), YFCU president James Speers and Andrew Dawson, Court Assistant The Worshipful Company of Woolmen, who also sponsor the competition

Front row middle: Jason McNeice from Collone YFC who came first in the YFCU Advanced Sheep Shearing Competition. Sean McCollum, The Glens YFC (front row left) was awarded second place and Jonathan McKelvey, Derg Valley YFC (front row right) was awarded third place. Also pictured back row is (left to right) is David John, from sponsor Lister Shearing, Patrick Allen from Moira Equestrian Centre who provided a cash prize for the best shorn pen of sheep to Jonathan McKelvey, Derg Valley YFC (who also came third in the advanced section), YFCU president James Speers and Andrew Dawson, Court Assistant The Worshipful Company of Woolmen, who also sponsor the competition

In the novice competition, judges named Andrew Rea from Straid YFC as the YFCU sheep shearing novice winner for 2017 and he received a trophy from David John, Lister Shearing.

Second place went to Stephen Wilson, Gleno YFC and third place went to Alexander Butler, The Glens YFC.

It was then the turn of the experienced shearers to show their craft at its best in the YFCU advanced sheep shearing competition.

Competitors sweated it out in a tough contest with the top scorers making it through to the final.

A YFCU member during the sheep shearing competition at Balmoral Show 2017

A YFCU member during the sheep shearing competition at Balmoral Show 2017

In the final, Jason McNeice, Collone YFC, secured the top place and was presented with the Lister hand piece trophy by David John from Lister Shearing.

Second place went to Sean McCollum, The Glens YFC and third place went to Jonathan McKelvey, Derg Valley YFC.

Jonathan McKelvey was also awarded the prize for best shorn pen of sheep and received a cash prize from Patrick Allen, Moira Equestrian Centre.

The association would like to thank The Northern Ireland Sheep Shearers Association (NISSA), British Wool Marketing Board (BWMB) and Lister Shearing Equipment Limited for their ongoing support of the YFCU sheep shearing competition. The YFCU would like to extend their thanks to the sheep shearing committee at the Royal Ulster Agricultural Society for ensuring the smooth running of the competition on the day.