History was made by four female shearers from New Zealand on Thursday 23 January when they sheared 2,066 lambs in nine hours in the four-stand class.
Shearing Sports New Zealand chair Sir David Fagan said: “There are some great things happening for shearing at the moment. This takes it to another level.”
The event took place at Waihi-Pukawa Station in the North Island. Megan Whitehead, Sarah Higgins, Natalya Rangiwha and Amy Wilcock combined their efforts during the five-run, nine-hour day.
Youngest of the team, 23-year-old Whitehead led the count for the women, shearing 608 lambs, with an average time of 53.3 seconds per lamb.
Inspired by her father, a former shearer, Whitehead said that she’d often thought of doing a record attempt, but not for at least another two years. “This morning I was a mess, just nerves, there were a lot of expectations,” she said.
Fagan said that Whitehead is now as a serious challenger to the solo women’s record of 648 set by Emily Welch in 2007. “Wouldn’t that be a great day? I wouldn’t miss that one,” he said.
Higgins, who is well known in shearing circles, became the first person to win Golden Shears titles in both wool handling and shearing in 2015.
Megan Whitehead (134, 117, 117, 118, 122) 608.
Sarah Higgins (120, 105, 98, 98, 106) 528.
Natalya Rangiawha (116, 95, 97, 97, 102) 507.
Amy Silcock (93, 81, 80, 83, 86) 423.
Environment: improving nitrogen use efficiency on sheep farms
Sheep management: purchasing ewes and pet lambs and dealing with abortion