young stockman award 2010
Ms Rachael Wheeler a young cattle breeder from Dubbo in New South is named the 2010 Matthew George Young Stockman Award winner.
Living in Rural NSW city of Dubbo, Rachael was first introduced to the cattle industry by her aunt, Lyn Frecklington, who took Rachael and her younger sister to an Angus Youth Roundup at Albury Wodonga. In her own words Rachael was “completely hooked”, with cattle being the focus of her life ever since.
Rachael has since been a regular at regional shows, participating in Junior Parading and Junior Judging Competitions. She has also had success at many major Australian cattle shows and interbreed competitions including Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide; and Dubbo and Bendigo Beef Shows.
Having worked part time at Hollywood Angus at Peak Hill in central western NSW, this year, at age 21, Rachael took up a fulltime position, having a greater role in stud management and to oversee an expanded showing program.
Rachael has also been a regular participant in Youth Cattle Training Camps from 2004 through 2009; believing that the training afforded to her at these camps has given her tremendous experience and is now a mechanism for her to put something back into the industry and help other young breeders.
With an ambition to one day establish her own property, Rachael has been fortunate to be able to own and breed her own stud Angus in conjunction with the Hollywood Angus herd. Purchasing her first stud cow in November 2003, she is already making inroads in the industry and producing show winning bulls having won Reserve Senior Champion at the Dubbo Beef Spectacular and Sydney Royal Show, and Senior Champion Bull at Bendigo Beef.
Not limited to Angus, Rachael works with other breeds also and each year fits and parades bulls at the Poll Hereford National Show & Sale and the Shorthorn National Show & Sale. She has also worked as part of a team fitting 70 head from 10 breeds at the 2008 Brisbane EKKA.
An active school life led Rachael to participate in a range of activities from sport to musicals and included fundraising and charitable activities; interests that continue today. She also contributes to future farming generations by mentoring agriculture students at Peak Hill Central School and provides practical hands on training with students coming on farm. She supports the Angus Youth Roundup and buddies a junior there. At local shows she assists young competitors by showing them the skills and providing animals for them to parade. At Tullamore, Rachael personally sponsors the novice junior parading event.
In her application Rachael says “I know my future resides in the beef cattle industry, and winning the Matthew George Young Stockman Award would be an amazing opportunity for me. The knowledge, contacts and skills that the study tour would give me would be invaluable in any sphere of the beef industry that I may be involved with.”
During her overseas travel, Rachael is keen to further develop her showing and judging skills and most importantly to enhance her knowledge of cattle breeding through genetics and performance. Rachael says “I have a clear vision for the type of females and sires I want to breed, and the more quickly I can identify the genetics that will deliver this, the more productive our stud will be”. Rachael would also like to expand her knowledge of feedlot operation and sees this as a great opportunity to gain first hand overseas experience.
The award was presented at the Royal Melbourne show amongst her peers prior to the ‘Gun Fitters’ competition in which she had been invited to compete. It turned out a very special day with a second place in the Gun Fitters as well as the Matthew George Young Stockman Award.
We wish Rachael the very best of luck and good fortune with her endeavours.