The National Bank Young Farmer Contest Grand Final 2012 will be held in Dunedin from May 23rd – May 26th.
Originally the Contest was to be held in Christchurch with the Tasman Region hosting the event. Following the recent earthquakes that the Region has experienced a decision was made to reschedule the Christchurch event from 2012 to 2014 (the South Island usually hosts the event every alternate year). This will allow the city time to rebuild and not put pressure on some of the facilities that would be required for a significant event like the Grand Final. The opportunity to host the 2012 Grand Final was then opened up to the other New Zealand Young Farmer’s Regions.
Otago/Southland and Aorangi put in a very strong joint bid to host the Grand Final, with Dunedin as their chosen venue, and last week the NZYF Board decided upon Dunedin as the 2012 host.
New NZ Young Farmers National Chairman, Paul Olsen said “Canterbury has suffered enough recently and while we would love to bring the event to Christchurch we felt that 2012 was too soon to impose on the city – Dunedin was the obvious choice with a joint proposal from the Aorangi and Otago/Southland Regions and we are confident they have the facilities and personnel to deliver a high calibre event”.
Former Grand Finalist and New Zealand Young Farmer Board Member Elliot Scott will convene the Grand Final and will be backed up by a very experienced Grand Final Committee including current Contest Champion Will Grayling and 2010 Winner, Grant McNaughton as well as other former Grand Finalists such as Nick Webster (2005, 2008) and Simon Glennie (1996). They will also be able to draw on the experience of the 2010 Grand Final Convenor, Murray Pilgrim who will act in an advisory role to the committee.
Elliot Scott is confident he will pull together a memorable event.
“I’m excited to bring the Grand Final to Dunedin for the first time since 1986. By combining the resources of Aorangi and Otago/Southland we have been able to bring a team together that has experience in competing at Grand Final level and a huge amount of enthusiasm for the event.”
“It’s going to be a huge challenge in tight timeframes but one that I’m confident we can pull off. In Dunedin we are spoilt for choice with the venues we have to choose from, including the new Forsyth Barr Stadium, the iconic Larnach Castle and the Edgar Centre to name a few and we’re confident the people of the city of Dunedin and surrounding districts will come along to support us while we showcase the very best of agriculture competing in The Ultimate Rural Challenge.”
The week will begin on Wednesday 23rd with an official opening, followed by Thursday’s Technical Day which will test the seven Grand Finalists’ brain power in a series of theory related tasks. Friday is the big public spectacle – the Practical Day hosts all sorts of practical challenges and the crowd pleasing Agrisports. The week will be wrapped up on Saturday with the announcement of the 2012 Contest Champion at the Televised Grand Final Evening Show.
Young Farmers from all over New Zealand will also converge on Dunedin for the TBfree NZYF Annual Conference which will include tours, sightseeing, National Competitions, the NZYF Annual General Meeting and more.
Some even younger farmers will also attend the week. The AgriKidsNZ and TeenAg Grand Finals will also take place in Dunedin. AgriKidsNZ is the primary school version of the Contest and TeenAg is aimed at secondary school students and is also modelled on The National Bank Young Farmer Contest.
District Finals for the 2012 Contest season are due to begin in October, with Regional Finals kicking off in February.