Daryl named top farmer

By MIKE SCOTT

HE did it. Rockhampton farmer Daryl Wilson cleaned up at the National Young Farmer of the Year competition held in Tasmania this week.

Mr Wilson, 28, fought off cold weather and seven other competitors to be the second Queenslander to take the title since the competition began in 1999.

"I was hopeful, but so were the other seven competitors,'' he said.

The competitiveness of the national event was evident in the final points tally.

Mr Wilson won with 1150, second place was 20 behind and all eight young farmers were with 200 points of each other.

The national event had a similar format to the state championships Mr Wilson won in June, but was more intense and involved, he said.

Each competitor, representing either Queensland, Tasmania, Victoria or Western Australia, had to complete 11 activity modules concerning various farming skills before completing an impromptu speech during dinner.

Fencing, quality assurance and water and irrigation management were winning modules for Mr Wilson, "then in the presentation I was lucky enough to get first place''.

As the winner he shares in $15,000 worth of prizes.

With the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry sponsoring this year's event, Mr Wilson was likely to undertake leadership courses they are offering to the winner.

But for now it is a quick return trip from Tasmania and back to work on the family farm at Mt Chalmers.

"I've got to come back to the real world.



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