Family ready to make history

By Doug Laing

A Wairoa mother, her son and daughter will make some sort of history at the 53rd Golden Shears which starts in Masterton today when they all compete in the same event.

They are farmer Marg Baynes, son Lachie and daughter Ingrid Smith, who will all be contesting the Senior shearing heats to be held late this afternoon.

But the mum, 58, and daughter, 26, who set a unique two-stand lamb shearing record of 903 in eight hours together in January 2009, aren't planning to go any further in the event.

"Just a practice event for me, just to settle the nerves," Marg Barnes said as she focuses on a women's invitation event being staged as a cancer fundraiser, and which will include six-times Golden Shears Open woolhandling champion Joanne Kumeroa, capable of shearing 400 sheep in a day but now fighting her own battle against cancer.

Marg Baynes says her back's only recently come right four years after her own 400, and jokes: "I've got over that silly business. I think I've grown up."

But she wouldn't miss the women's event for anything, and says: "I thought it was an honour to be asked. I couldn't really turn it down when I was told it was for cancer."

"We all know someone who has died of cancer," she said. They include her father Frank Wright, who just four months before dying at the age of 60 in 1989 shore and pressed 24 bales of wool on his family property near Whangarei.

In his heyday he shore 428 in a day, with narrow-combed gear.

Others in the women's event are eight-hour women's lambshearing record holder Kerri-Jo Te Huia, of Te Kuiti, industrial lawyer and former world shearing record holder Jills Burney, and former Golden Shears Junior finalist Sarah Goss.

While mum and daughter Baynes won't be too worried about the outcome of the senior competition, it will be more serious for Lachie Baynes, who loomed right into contention with third place at the Taumarunui Jamboree Shears last Friday, fourth at Apiti the next day then victory at the Pahiatua Shears.


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