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Field digging for victory

Jaden Field. PHOTOS/FRASER MAY

GIANINA SCHWANECKE
[email protected]

A Carterton excavator operator is set to represent the wider Wellington region at the national excavator operator competition at the Central Districts Field Days next month.

Jaden Field, from Fulton Hogan, will represent Wellington and Wairarapa at the national competition after competing in regionals over the weekend.

The 25-year-old came in second place this year, but first place digger driver Blair Hartle is unable to represent the region at nationals, leaving the task to Field.

“It’s a shame Blair can’t make it, but I know I’ve got the skills,” Field said.

Carterton’s Jaden Field is off to the national excavator competition.

Organised by the Wellington branch of national association Civil Contractors New Zealand, the competition had 12 top excavator operators from across the region’s civil construction companies navigate an hour-long course to test their skills against one another.

Tasks in the course ranged from slam-dunking a basketball into a two-storey concrete pipe to placing an egg on a road cone using a 20-tonne Hitachi excavator – a challenge achieved for the first time in three years by Alex Boon from Ultra Contracting.

Field came first in the regional competition last year and was “stoked” to be representing the region again.

“A lot comes down to nerves,” he said. “Last year, I was nervous.

“This year has been amazing, I was happy with my round.”

CCNZ Wellington Wairarapa branch chairman Eddie Carson said, “This year was a really tight competition. I’m proud to see the region do so well, and there’s not a competitor here that doesn’t deserve recognition for their performance.”

Founded in 1994, the National Excavator Operator Competition is now in its 25th year.

The finals will be held from March 14-16 at the Central Districts Field Days in Feilding.

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