Last weekend’s Crookwell Show brought shearers and shearing fans out in droves from across the region, and for the seventh time in eight years, Steve Hogan claimed victory in the Open category.
With 50 shearers in total across four divisions, spectators were treated to a high quality of competition on Saturday, and the day culminated in the Open final in the afternoon.
The Yass local was third to finish in terms of time in the final, but what he lacked in pace, he made up for in the quality of his shearing, and his steady hand ensured a minute victory by roughly half a point.
“It's always a good comp over here, so it's good to keep [the streak of victories] going,” Hogan said.
It was often said throughout the day that Hogan was competing with a target on his back as one of the most experienced and successful shearers present at the event, and he sees it as a positive.
“It’s good, you strive to get to the top, and it’s good to see all the other young fellas striving to be there as well,” he said.
Of the other competitors and the other divisions, Hogan effused and said that “the talent’s phenominal, it’s really good to see the fellas coming through.
“There’s a lot of talent out there.”
The Crookwell event is doubly important as the circuit points accrued from his victory will count toward Hogan’s chances in the state selection in May.
Thankfully for Hogan, he felt in very good touch last weekend and is looking to take that form forward into the rest of the 2019 season.
The nailbiting finish to the Open division was particularly pleasing for Crookwell A.P. and H Society committee member, Nathan Haynes, who helped organise much of the competition and is the NSW team manager.
“It was great, it’s getting closer and closer every year,” Haynes said.
“Someone will beat [Hogan] eventually,” he added with a chuckle.
Many Crookwell shearers took to the stage throughout the day and showed the depth of the town’s talent, such as Brad Smith, who won the Novice event, and Ben Picker, who won the Best Local Shearer award.
The winners from each event were:
- Novice – Brad Smith
- Intermediate – Kurt Layton
- Senior – Tom Seaman
- Open – Steve Hogan