August 2005 -- It took 2,988 sheep, 17 countries, 80 bales of wool and a ?heap of hard yakka? in anyone?s language for an Australian man to win the Golden Shears World Championships held in Toowoomba, Australia. The Australian team also took the machine-shearing team event, while New Zealand picked up the team and individual wool-handling events.
Competing for the United States in the championships were Jim Schaefer from Callao, Mo., and Doug Rathke of Hutchinson, Minn. Both represented the United States in the machine shearing competition with Rathke also competing in the blade shearing event.
?This competition was a great opportunity for me to meet other international shearers and work with some Australian shearing instructors,? says Schaefer.
The American Wool Council provided financial support to sponsor the U.S. team at the world championships.
The next World Shearing Championships will be held in Norway in October 2008.