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Farming in the blood .. Show president Marie FitzPatrick has been successfully juggling a lot of commitments in the lead-up to the Oxford A&P Show. She is pictured with Joe Fouhy from the Glenworth Angus Stud, in the Manawatu, at a Timperlea Angus on farm sale.

By DAVID HILL

Our show has a really good committee, which is very supportive and quite young in comparison to other committees. Marie FitzPatrick

Running an Angus stud, raising a newborn child and preparing for an A&P show is all in a day’s work for Marie FitzPatrick.

The 28-year-old is set to become one of the youngest show presidents when she presides over the Oxford A&P Show on Saturday, April 3.

“Things do take a bit longer when you’re a young mum and a farmer, but we are getting good at multi-tasking,says. Having an engineer husband at home to take care of the farm machinery certainly helps. Andrew FitzPatrick was raised on a sheep and beef farm at Fairlie.

“I have a very supportive husband who has been able to look after the farm, and the machinery is getting a lot better treated,” she says.

“I can still do the stock work, but I can’t quite fit it all in.”

Baby Margaret will be barely eight weeks old on show day, but has already been present for scanning at two weeks old, weaning at four weeks, and was farm heifer competition at six weeks. Angus is the best by the end of it,” Marie says.

The family’s farm, Timperlea Angus, has 120 stud cows and will host the third on-farm bull sale in October.

“It’s very exciting. It’s been very well supported and we’ve had some really good averages; and everyone seems to be pleased with our bulls.”

Marie and Andrew also winter graze dairy cows for her sisters and keep enough sheep “to train the dogs”.

“With the baby around, the dogs are getting a lot less attention than they normally do, so we needed the sheep to keep them busy.”

Marie’s sisters, Victoria and Hazel, and their respective partners Glen Trayner and Matt Clark, sharemilk for their parents, Clarence and Linda Timperley.

The Timperley family will be well represented in the crops and baleage classes, and the baking and jam classes, while Marie’s nieces will be competing in the highland dancing section, organised by her sister, Victoria.

“The hay and baleage competition is going to be hotly contested by our family to see who’s going to win.

“We’re all going to the show, so mum is on grandparent duty. Between us there’s seven grandkids.”

Marie is part of a youthful presidential team, with senior vice-president Letitia Schroeder (who would have been president last year) and Steve Macauley both under 40.

“We are really lucky. Out show has a really good committee, which is very supportive and quite young in comparison to other committees, so we will hopefully have a bit more longevity.

“And we have an amazing secretary in Christine Roberts, who doesn’t want any more young mums for a while. But we are really lucky to have her as she runs it like a well-oiled machine.”