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Bayer Wairarapa Young Viticulturist of the Year 2015 announced

A great win for Mark Langlands from Te Kairanga as he becomes the Bayer Wairarapa Young Viticulturist of the Year 2015.  Contestants battled it out at Te Kairanga Vineyard with their final challenge being to deliver a speech to a key audience in the evening  at the Martinborough Village Cafe.  

Contestants completed a wide range of activities  including  questions on trellising, vine management, pests & diseases, budgeting, tractor maintenance and irrigation as well as having an interview and a quick fire buzzer round.

It was a very close competition with  Scott Lancely from Craggy Range taking 2nd place and James Kenny from Martinborough Vineyards coming 3rd .  They all won cash prizes as well as wine glasses donated by Winejobsonline.
Langlands heads off to California on Friday to work a vintage there, which will be a fantastic experience, however it means he is unavailable for the National Final.  Lancely will therefore take his place and represent the Wairarapa region, competing against other finalists from Hawkes Bay, Marlborough and Central Otago.  

The entertaining Biostart Hortisports race took place at lunchtime with a sausage sizzle laid on by Fruitfed Supplies.  For this crazy race contestants not only had to carry out general viticultural activities, but also hit a bullseye on a dartboard and put a nappy on a teddy bear and carry it through the vineyards - viticulture as we’ve never seen it before!  The winner for this was awarded a $500 Precision Hawk voucher  for cutting edge analysis from drone use in the vineyard. 

Questions are set by the national and local sponsors who are all specialists in various aspects of the industry.  As well as testing the knowledge and skills of the contestants, the competition gives everyone involved an invaluable opportunity for networking and relationship building.

The Young Viticulturist of the Year competition is now in its 10th year and has become an important fixture in the viticultural calendar.  It gives young viticulturists the opportunity to develop their skills and knowledge as well as make a name for themselves within the industry.

As well as gaining the title of Bayer Young Viticulturist of the Year 2015, the national winner will be awarded a $5000 travel voucher from NZSVO, 1 years full lease of a Hyundai Santa Fe, $2000 cash,  wine glasses and leadership training.  They will also secure a place in the Young Horticulturist of the Year competition representing the viticultural industry.