It was the first bale of wool Vinnie Goodger had pressed in a year, but it was bang on the button as he successfully defended his Golden Shears men’s woolpressing title in front of his home Wairarapa crowd in Masterton’s War Memorial Stadium tonight.
Goodger, having turned to dairy farming for a more stable lifestyle and steadier income with the arrival of children Kya, 3, and Karson Warwick, 2, had stopped working fulltime in the woolsheds three years agao, and he hadn’t pressed a bale since the Golden Shears last year.
But the 27-year-old still managed to press the perfect bale to the pre-set standard of 170kg, which, with also the best time and pressing points, helped him hammer home the advantage over shearer, woolhandler and first-time men’s woolpressing finalist Ricci Stevens to win by the comfortable margin of 18.35pts.
It was the first time he’d pressed to the target in a final.
Goodger, brother of 13-times title winner Jeremy Goodger who was eliminated in the semi-finals, said he keeps competing in the event because “it’s a family tradition.”
“I just save it for the Golden Shears, and rely on the knowledge on the day,” he said.
The women’s woolpressing title went to Cushla Abraham, of Masterton, making her the first person to win individual Golden Shears titles in shearing and pressing, and in the even more unique position of having also been an Open-class woolhandling winner else where on the Shearing Sports New Zealand circuit.
The pairs woolpressing title went to Jimmy Samuels and Jono Hicks, of Marton, capping a good day for Samuels who also qualified for the Golden Shears Open shearing semi-finals for the first time.
Jeremy Goodger was not to be left without for his efforts, winning the Golden Shears Triathlon, based on heats points by 13 people who had competed in shearing, woolhandling and wool pressing during the championships.