Sheep racing adds spice to A&P card

By Zac Yates

Jumping horses, whining chainsaws and sprinting sheep will be among the highlights of this weekend's Wanganui A&P; Show.

Now in its 140th year, the show returns to Springvale Park, and Wanganui A&P; Association secretary Margaret Donoghue is busy sorting out entries for the various events.

She said one of the key attractions of this year's show would be the equestrian section at Wanganui Racecourse.

"It's the largest of its kind in the district; at this stage we have about 1200 entrants. There are three rings of showjumping on the Saturday, and we also have miniatures on Sunday. There will also be dressage, showhunting, ponies - there will be a lot on.

"There's no entrance fee so the public are more than welcome to come."

The wood-chopping competitions will be another highlight with chainsaw events introduced this year.

The most unusual event will likely be sheep racing, thought to be another first in Wanganui.

"The idea is to have some audience participation. We'll have coloured saddlecloths on each sheep, so people can pick one, and the winner gets a small prize," she said.

It is hoped there will be two races on Saturday and Sunday.

Among the other attractions will be pet calf and lamb competitions, a petting farm and vintage machinery displays.

One notable absence this year will be the home industries stalls because the organiser retired after the last show.

Mrs Donoghue said the section was "in recess" this year but if someone stepped up to run it, it could make a comeback.

Once again, Mahons Amusements will provide a range of stalls and rides at Springvale Park, which will also be open Friday and Saturday nights from 7-10pm. Entry costs $2 for adults while children under 10 get in for free.

The show runs on Saturday, November 10 and Sunday, November 11 from 10am till 4pm.

- Wanganui Chronicle

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