GALLERY: Zane wins the 'big one' at Paradise Lagoons
CAMPDRAFTING: Springsure's Zane Habermann has taken out the Graeme Acton Memorial Open at the Paradise Lagoons Campdraft.
The 36-year-old led the competition after the opening two rounds and sealed the win with an 89-point run on his 10-year-old mare Rosie Oak in the final on Saturday afternoon.
The Graeme Acton Memorial was one of four finals decided on the action-packed Saturday program, which drew more than 6000 people to the multi-million dollar, purpose-built facility outside Rockhampton.
It culminated in the running of the popular State of Origin, which Queensland won by 162 points.
The competition continued yesterday, with four more finals decided, including the Mort & Co Open, in which Habermann hoped to feature.
The talented horseman has competed at the Paradise Lagoons Campdraft for more than a decade but this was the first time he had claimed the coveted memorial open title.
"I've won the Mort & Co twice but it's the first time for this one,” he said.
"You always try and have a win in this - it's the big one to win here.”
Habermann was the fourth rider into the arena in the final and had an anxious wait as 40 other competitors tried to rein in his lead.
None was successful and he held on to win by two points from Craig Kehl (Budgeroo Ruby) and Adrian Lamb (Lambs Leroy), who both scored 264.
Habermann also tasted victory in the Clermont Gold Cup a month ago.
He first learned to ride a horse on his family property when he was three and has been campdrafting for more than 30 years.
"I love the mateship. It's like one big family, everyone knows each other and gets on really well,” he said.
And the secret to success: "You've got to have a good horse, pick good cattle and be consistent.”
Habermann, who saddled up in five different events over the past four days, said he would be back next year.
"It's an unreal event and it's a credit to everyone involved,” he said.
Campdraft organisers were expecting spectator numbers to top the 12,000-mark for the four days.
Committee member Russell Hughes said Saturday's bumper crowd made for a fantastic atmosphere.
"Crowd numbers would have topped the 6000 on Saturday - and they just didn't want to go home,” he said.
"At 11.30 last night (Saturday) we still had about 1000 people on the dance floor.”
- Graeme Acton Memorial Draft sponsored by Elders: Zane Habermann (Rosie Oak) 1, Craig Kehl (Budgeroo Ruby) 2 and Adrian Lamb (Lambs Leroy) 2-3
- Frasers Livestock Transport Stallion Draft: Pete Comiskey (Duck n Down) 1, Warren Thompson (Hazelwood Conartist) 2, Tony McFarlane (Boyce's Billie Ray) 3. Cutout winner, Mark Buttsworth (One Stylish Pepto)
- Judy Camm Memorial Supergirl Draft: Peter Hill (Dusty) 1, Greg Kelly (Lance) and Thomas Mills (Pea Vine Acres) 2-3. Cutout winner: Les Stewart (Acres of Ivory)
- Mort & Co Australian Open Draft: Pete Comiskey (Hankerchief) 1, Jess Hoffmann (Amrosi) 2, Mark Buttsworth 3. Cutout winner, Kimberley Sammon (Smartys High Card)
- Wyena Juvenile Draft: Clay Walker (Special Destiny) 1, Michael Allgood (Billy Bob) 2, Courtney Lockyer (Mr Meena) and Jessica Spoor (Aurora Duchess) 3-4. Cutout winner, Kate Southen (Shes a Blue Badger)
- CM Pastoral Futurity Draft: Les Stewart (Hazlewood Flight Command) 1, Peter Black (Child Play) and Lance Spannagle (Starelle Brandy) 2-3. Cutout winner: Les Stewart, Hazlewood Flight Command
- JBS Australia Swift Premium Novice Draft: Kurt Hanrahan (Boonara Electra) 1, Rohan Marks (Gangman) 2, Pete Comiskey (Just Jim), Pete Comiskey (Destined to Be) and John Templeton (Donell Park Hurstler) 3-5. Cutout winner, Mark Buttsworth (Stylish Unit)
- Wilangi Brahmans Ladies Draft: Helen Parker (Catalina) 1, Coarlie Daley (Tyson) 2, Jaiden Hill (Roy) 3. Cutout winner, Helen Parker (Catalina)
- Maiden Novice Rider Shootout: Kurt Hanrahan (Bobadil Acres of Spin) 1, Kate Southern (Mia) 2, Clayton Hoch (He's A Stylish Cat) 3