Henry Mayo from Devon has made history in a showpiece farming competition in New Zealand.

The former Hartpury College agriculture diploma student is the first New Zealand Shearing Championships winner from overseas in 28 years.

Henry, who studied a Level 3 Extended Diploma in Agriculture at Hartpury, had been scheduled to return home before the championships in Te Kuiti – the self-proclaimed shearing capital of the world – to help his brother Charlie and parents Anthony and Charlotte on the family farm in Devon.

But he put those plans on hold when he won travel and accommodation in Te Kuiti in another competition. The decision paid off in style as the 20 year old won the junior final at the New Zealand Shearing Championships, his tenth success in 13 finals this season.

While new to the sheep of the North Island, Mayo completed his task of shearing five sheep in just eight minutes, 15.7 seconds – nearly one minute ahead of the runner-up.

“I was pretty shocked – I wasn’t expecting it,” said Henry, now back home in the UK.

“I’d been shearing sheep all summer, as well as competing in competitions, which was all good practise leading up to the event.

“I spent six months in New Zealand and I loved every minute of it – it’s a cool country.”