Northland Axemen's Association Inc

Great article. Have a good read here

15th Nov 16.

Jason Wynyard has been crowned the best individual wood chopper in the world for the eighth time at the Stihl Timbersports 2016 World Championship in Stuttgart, Germany.

From the outset of the competition, Wynyard, the father of Kiwi basketball prodigy Tai Wynyard, was the man to beat, taking the lead and cutting down 12 contestants.

Fighting off fierce competition from American Matthew Cogar, Wynyard's axe disciplines were too strong and the 43-year-old said that his consistency showed through at the end.

"It took a long way and a lot of hard work to get here," he said after receiving the gold medal.

"My consistent performance yielded the title at the end. That is why I am now very delighted."

Second place went to Cogar, while third place was awarded to Czech Martin Komarak.

Meanwhile, the Australians took home the team race after setting a new world record of four logs in 46.45 seconds, ahead of Canada and New Zealand with the Kiwis being eliminated by the Canadians in the quarter-final.

NAA President’s Report 2016

 

Sometimes it’s hard to remember and reflect on the things that happen in a wood chopping season, especially when you’re trying to keep warm by the fire in mid-July. In a lot of ways, it’s been business as usual but there were some notable highlights too.

Top of the list would have to be the number of boys who seem to have taken an interest in the sport just lately. While not reflected in our official membership register (yet!) we’ve had 6-8 young guys take the opportunity to hop on an underhand block at regular meetings and its fantastic to see Dad’s and sons, Uncles and nephews getting into it. Obviously we’re keen to keep them rolling and hope to see them continue on.

In February the Kauri Museum at Matakohe were looking to add a piece about the sport of woodchopping to their vast exhibition and approached us for help. A series of videos were produced titled ‘Axemen Legends’ and the original idea was to have prominent local axemen talk about the various disciplines. In the end the personal story of each ‘legend’ is what really came to the fore and is what makes these videos particularly special. Nelson Parker, Bill Carter, Bruce and Neville Alexander and Jason Semenoff are featured – check them out on YouTube using search term ‘axemen legend’. You’ll be impressed.

The other highlight is the return of energy to the Whangarei area with the formation of the Ngati Hine Axemen’s Club who have revived one meeting (Whangarei A&P Show) and added another to the annual calendar (Hukerenui Hotel). After an initial test run in February 2016 the meeting at Hukerenui was deemed a success by sponsors, hosts and competitors alike so it’s been officially sanctioned and ‘on the calendar’. This coming season the organisers have really got in behind it and set up an Underhand Championship event with first place prize money of $1000 to be run. They seem to have a never ending supply of Radiata up there so it’s great to see that type of timber being put up too.

Importantly, I’d like to publicly acknowledge Narina Larsen who has resigned as Treasurer, a position she’s held for 18 seasons straight. What an effort! Thank god she didn’t say “resigning as handicapper”.

Her resignation shows us that the lack of depth in wood chopping isn’t only about competitor numbers, it’s in the backroom as well as in the chopping arena itself. In my view the answer amounts to simply getting more people involved + actively sharing everything you know with anyone who cares to listen.

In closing, a big thank you to everyone involved in our meetings especially if you’re a volunteer helper or if you’ve travelled from outside our region to chop with us. We hope to see you all again in 2017.

PS: The 2017 Warkworth A&P show is a 2-day meeting this year.

 

John Sanderson 28 July 2016.


TROPHY WINNERS 2016

Kay Hauraki Memorial most points earned at A & P Shows – Richard Morton

NAAC Standing points trophy – Ryan Donnelly

AL Shoemark underhand trophy – Bevan Gubb

Bill and Janice Brownlee most points in all opens – Bevan Gubb



Results Grades Kaipara Flats 5.3.16

Single Saw

1 T Laing 2 C Hastie 3 L Berger

D Grade UH

1 R Brown 2  R Farr 3 J Sanderson

C Grade Underhand

1 J McDonnell 2 K McDonnell 3 T Reuben

B Grade Underhand

1 B Gubb 2 J Underwood 3 R Donnelly

A Grade Underhand

1 C Hastie 2 M Paddison 3 J Torrington

Double hand sawing

1 T Reuben/T Laing 2 J Torrington/C Hastie 3 J Underwood/J McDonnell

C Grade Standing

1 R Brown 2 H Leef 3 R Farr

B Grade Standing

1 R Morton 2 J Underwood 3 G McDonnell

A Grade Standing

1 S Semenoff 2 M Paddison 3 J Torrington

Jack n Jill

1 The Bergers

Axethrowing

1 T Laing 2 K McDonnell 3 T Reuben

300mm Standing open Bill Shelford Memorial

1 J Torrington 2 S Semenoff 3 R Donnelly

325mm Underhand Kaipara Flats trophy

1 L Berger 2 R Donnelly 3 J Underwood.


Results Helensville 27.2.16

Single Saw

1 M Komarek 2 W McDonald

275mm Standing

1 T Reuben 2 J Whitehead 3 R Morton

275mm Restricted Underhand

1 T Hopkins 2 J Oxley 3 R Brown

C Division Standing Championship

1 R Morton 2 R Farr 3 T Reuben

B Division Standing Championship

1 J Underwoods 2 G McDonnell 3 T Laing

A Division Standing Championship

1 J Wynyard 2 W McDonald 3 J Semenoff

Boys underhand

1 T Semenoff 2 J Semenoff 3 K Torres Buck

375mm Underhand

1 J Wynyard 2 C Hastie 3 J Semenoff

275mm Restricted Underhand

1 R Brown 2 T Hopkins 3 K Steward

Double hand sawing

1 J Wynyard/W McDonald 2 J Underwood/J McDonnell 3 J Whitehead/K Steward

C Division Underhand Championship

1 J Oxley 2 R Brown 3 R Farr

B Division Underhand Championship

1 J Underwood 2 T Laing 3 R Morton

A Division Underhand Championship

1 J Wynyard 2 M Komarek 3 J Whitehead

 

Results Broadwood 20.2.16


250mm Standing
1 T Reuben 2 B Gubb 3 T Proctor
275mm Standing
1 Tom Proctor 2 B Gubb 3 Mike Paddison
300mm Standing
1 M Ford 2 M Paddison 3 S Semenoff
275mm Underhand
1 T Reuben 2 R Morton 3 M Paddison C Division
300 Underhand
1 R Farr 2 J Sanderson 3 Harding Leef B Division
300mm Underhand
1 J McDonnell 2 L Berger 3 R Morton A Division
300mm Underhand
1 Mike Paddison 2 G Albert 3 J Semenoff


Results Hukerenui 13.2.16

250mm standing
1 B Gubb 2 J Underwood 3 J McDonnell
275mm Underhand
1 R Donnelly 2 M Paddison 3 G McDonnell
300mm Underhand
1 R Donnelly 2 B Gubb 3 S Bond
250mm Standing
1 S Semenoff 2 R Donnelly 3 J Semenoff
Lowest markers
1 J Sanderson 2 R Brown 3 R Farr
300mm standing
1 C Hastie 2 J Semenoff 3 R Donnelly
Double hand sawing
1 J McDonnell/J Underwood 2 J Semenoff/R Donnelly 3 G McDonnell/M Paddison
Boys chop
1 T Semenoff 2 K Torres-Buck 3 J Semenoff



Paparoa Results 6.2.16

300mm Standing
1 B Gubb 2 T Reuben 3 R Donnelly
C Grade Standing
1 R Morton 2 K McDonnell 3 J Cowan Raiti
B Grade Standing
1 R Donnelly 2 B Gubb 3 M Ford
A Grade Standing
1 C Hastie 2 J Semenoff 3 T Laing
300mm Underhand
1 J McDonnell 2 B Gubb 3 J Semenoff
C Grade Underhand
1 K McDonnell 2 T Hopkins 3 R Farr
B Grade Underhand
1 R Morton 2 J McDonnell 3 L Berger
A Grade Underhand
1 B Gubb 2 J Semenoff 3 G McDonnell
Double hand sawing
1 J McDonnell/J Underwood 2 J Cowan Raiti/G McDonnell 3 T Reuben/T Laing
Single saw
1 C Hastie 2 L Berger 3 T Laing


Results Opononi 1.1.16

250mm Standing
1 R Donnelly 2 C Hastie 3 P Eyles
275mm Standing
1 R Donnelly 2 P Eyles 3 C Hall
Jack n Jill Sawing
1 M Tainui/C Lord 2 D Apelu/C Hall
325mm Standing Champ
1 J Wynyard 2 J Semenoff 3 J Whitehead
300mm Standing
1 J Torrington 2 C Hall 3 C Hastie
275mm Underhand
1 J Torrington 2 R Donnelly 3 C Lord
325mm Underhand Champ
1 J Whitehead 2 J Wynyard 3 C Hall
300mm Underhand
1 M Ford 2 P Eyles 3 J Torrington.


Results Puhoi 9.1.16
275mm E Div Underhand
1 M Trow 2 J Oxley 3 T Hopkins 4 B Scott
275mm D Div Underhand
1 R Morton 2 R Donnelly 3 J Cowan Raiti 4 B Turnwald
275mm C Div Underhand
1 B Gubb 2 T Reuben 3 R Johnstone 4 J Underwood
275mm B Div Underhand
1 G McDonnell 2 M Paddison 3 S Semenoff 4 C Hastie
275mm A Div Underhand
1 J Torrington 2 J Whitehead 3 C Lord 4 S Harper
Single Saw
1 L Trow 2 C Tuapawa 3 C Lord 4 W McDonald
250mm D Div Standing
1 R Morton 2 M Ford 3 R Johnstone 4 R Donnelly
250mm C Div Standing
1 J Brough 2 G McDonnell 3 B Scott 4 B Turnwald
250mm B Div Standing
1 C Tuapawa 2 C Hastie 3 S Semenoff 4 J Torrington
250mm A Div Standing
1 L Trow 2 J Whitehead 3 S Harper 4 C Lord
Double hand sawing
1 J Oxley/J Cowan Raiti 2 G McDonnell/M Paddison 3 J Torrington/J Semenoff 4 M Tainui/C Lord
Standing Championship
1 J Whitehead 2 N McDonald 3 C Lord 4 J Semenoff
Axethrowing
1 L Trow 2 J Semenoff 3 G McDonnell 4 J Whitehead
Novice Underhand
1 H Hardy 2 R Brown 3 T Hopkins 4 P Norris
Jiggerboard
1 C Lord 2 J Whitehead 3 W McDonald
Underhand Championship
1 C Hall 2 J Whitehead 3 J Torrington 4 D McDonald
325mm Underhand
1 B Gubb 2 R Morton 3 J Underwood 4 N McDonald
Jack n Jill Sawing
1 G&L Trow 2 M&L Berger 3 M Tainui/C Lord 4 D Apelu/C Hall
300mm Standing
1 B Gubb 2 J Cowan Raiti 3 J Underwood 4 G McDonnell


Results Warkworth 23.1.16
325mm Underhand
1 R Donnelly 2 B Gubb 3 R Morton
275mm D Div Underhand
1 M Trow 2 T Hopkinson 3 C Jujnovich
275mm C Div Underhand
1 R Donnelly 2 T Reuben 3 J Cowan Raiti
300mm B Div Underhand
1 J Underwood 2 B Gubb 3 M Paddison
325mm A Div Underhand
1 J Semenoff 2 N McDonald 3 J Torrington
275mm C Div Standing
1 M Ford 2 T Reuben 3 B Turnwald
300mm B Div Standing
1 R Donnelly 2 J Torrington 3 J Underwood
300mm A Div Standing
1 N McDonald 2 J Semenoff 3 J Whitehead
2 man Relay
1 M Ford/T Reuben 2 M + L Trow 3 J Cowan Raiti/J Semenoff
Axe Throw
1 C Lord 2 J Whitehead 3 L Trow
Tree
1 J Whitehead 2 C Lord 3 L Trow
Jack n Jill Sawing
1 G + L Trow 2 M Tainui/C Lord 3 M + L Berger
250mm Standing
1 M Ford 2 R Donnelly 3 J Cowan Raiti
Butcher Block
1 N McDonald/J Whitehead 2 L Trow/J Torrington 3 J Semenoff/C Hastie
250mm restricted underhand
1 T Hopkinson 2 R Brown 3 C Jujnovich
Double hand sawing
1 J Underwood/J McDonnell 2 D + N McDonald 3 G McDonnell/M Paddison


Multiple world champion wood chopper Jason Wynyard and his son, basketball player Tai Wynyard, are the first joint winners of the Maori sports person of the year award.

The Auckland duo shared the top prize at the awards ceremony in Auckland on Saturday.

Jason Wynyard was earlier named senior Maori sportsman of the year for a series of winning performances, including a sixth victory at the Timbersports world championships in Austria in November.

Tai Wynyard won the junior Maori award after being named to play for the Tall Blacks at age 16 and attracting a flurry of interest from United States colleges.

Earlier, Kiwis and Warriors rugby league great Stacey Jones and golfer Phil Tataurangi were inducted into the Maori Sports Hall of Fame. Read a full report here

Jason Wynyard wins STIHL 2014 World Championship. More here http://goo.gl/O027Ka




Northland Presidents Report 2014

Selwyn Semenoff being awarded a life membership to the Northland Axemen’s association Feb 2014


The 2014 season got off to a ‘solid’ start with some of the hardest radiata we’ve cut in a long time being served up at Matakohe and Whangarei. Later in the season we had some of the biggest wood many of our guys had ever cut in competition with 425mm poplar being dished up for the Joe Julian Memorial (a standing event) at Broadwood in February.

This year’s meeting at Broadwood was an extra special one being the 100th anniversary of the North Hokianga A&P Association as well as being the venue for the presentation of a life membership award to Selwyn Semenoff. It was the perfect opportunity to recognise his 40 year involvement in wood chopping and the mayor of Northland was on hand to mark the event as were a contingent of Selwyn’s family. It was kept as a surprise and Selwyn was completely blown away by the whole affair and humbled for being recognised in this way. According to his family, Selly is just as obsessed about wood chopping today as he ever was and in his list of life’s priorities it ranks highly! He’s one of quiet guys at a meeting and usually in the background but if you get him talking about wood chopping he really comes out of his shell – no question he’s been bitten by the bug! Selly was a member of the NZ veteran’s teams in 2012 and 2013 and one of his proudest moments was seeing his son Jason being selected for the U21 team in 1997.  

Some of our members took advantage of a subsidy NAA provided for another trip to Stratford in November. It’s quite a long way for us to go with the best part of a day’s travel required either side of the event itself but the meeting and hospitality is well worth it. Plus it’s resulted in some strong connections being made at a grassroots level with some of the guys from Taranaki reciprocating by coming up to Puhoi in January. So that’s been great.

In more good news we’ve had some new members join up this past season all of whom have little or no experience with an axe. It meant we’ve had to cater for more novice events but it’s a great problem to have and one that bodes reasonably well for the future so long as we can maintain their interest in the sport. The downside is that we didn’t really get a lift in overall membership because some of our more seasoned members have begun to step down but here’s hoping we can attract more new blood this coming season.

Traditionally we’ve run a grading day in March and for the last 2 years the Kaipara Flats Sports Club have been our host. This year we added 4 open events to the programme which made for an excellent day’s chopping and the Club are keen to see it build into something a bit bigger. Chopping meetings have been falling away over the years so it’s great to see one being added to the calendar along with genuine and enthusiastic support from the venue. This is the last event of the Northland calendar so finishes with a BBQ and good hospitality as the sun goes down. A big thank you to the KFSC for supporting us.

In closing, I’d like to thank everyone who has supported a chopping meeting in Northland especially those volunteers who do the hidden things that make a day successful. The cleanup crew, the parking people, the eye judges, block stewards and so on. We’re also really grateful to the businesses both large and small who make a financial contribution or lend equipment to make the days happen. It really is a team effort and it’s great to be able to pull it all together once again. All the best.

John Sanderson (NAA President)

 

In the News 

Chopping wood has always been seen as one of the more "manly"' endeavours, but now researchers may be able to prove it.

University of California scientists have discovered the testosterone levels of men spike when chopping wood - and Kiwi axemen have backed the findings.

The study measured testosterone levels of a group of men clearing trees for a horticultural plot. After cutting for just one hour their testosterone levels jumped by about 47 per cent.

The same group registered an average increase of about 30 per cent after playing a competitive soccer match.

The study, published in the journal Evolution & Human Behavior, concluded that the extra spike from chopping wood was due to man's evolutionary desire to provide for his family.

Competitive axeman Campbell Hastie, who is also secretary of the Northland Axeman's Association, said the research sounded right.

He said the biggest difference between wood chopping and soccer was the perceived danger factor.

"Try to think of another sport where you can go wild with a six-pound razor blade," said Mr Hastie.

New Zealand has a long history of champion axemen.

The late David Bolstad dominated the professional Timbersport series in the United States in the 2000s, winning five titles between 2001 and 2008. Fellow Kiwi Jason Wynyard also won multiple titles, including last year's Timbersport World Championship.

The president of the New Zealand Axeman's Association, Chris Lord, said the amount of energy and effort required in the sport, combined with increased testosterone levels, caused some competitors to get wound up.

"There's certainly a bit of aggression in the ring after an event." Mr Lord said he felt most "manly" during preparation for the shows, "getting out into the bush or forest, felling the trees ...".

"There is a social bond that occurs between a group of men sweating side by side in honest toil with a common purpose," said Mr Lord.

While axemen overwhelmingly agreed with the study's findings, soccer players weren't so sure.

Former All White Harry Ngata said he had never felt as though his masculinity was lacking during his playing career.

"I have chopped a fair bit of wood in my time, I enjoy it," said Mr Ngata. But soccer lacking masculinity "has never crossed my mind".

30-07-12

News from the US Today was the FINAL day of the Lumberjack World Championships. 

Jason won Hot Saw, Underhand, Standing, 2nd Single saw and 2nd Jack n Jill(with Karmyn). Also, he was named Tony Wise All around Champion for the 14th consecutive year. 

Woo hoo 

Check it out here 

Bruce Alexander is finally made a Life Member of Northland Axemen's Association presenting him with his certificate Janice Brownlee. 

Innes Davidson was welcomed into the Northland Sports hall of fame on 21/11/08 he joins other Northland greats Sid Going (rugby), Neti Traill (table tennis), Peter Jones (rugby)
J B Smith (rugby) Trevor Blake (hockey) Pat Murphy (referee) Garry Frew ( table tennis, tennis and service) Ross McPherson (cricket, hockey) Joe Morgan (rugby) Brian Dunning (cricket) Ted Griffin (rugby) Laurie Byers (cycling) Blyth Tait (equestrian) Lynn Parker (netball). 


This is Innes’ Tribute as read at the awards dinner.

a legendary figure in a sporting code where only the strong survive…

INNES DAVIDSON

When it comes to sport, there are some codes that stand apart in Northland.

Rugby, cricket and hockey are staple nutrition for the Northland sporting faithful.  Nothing unusual there – they are, after all, sports most Kiwis know a bit about.

But in the North, a few minor sports have, in their zenith captured the imagination, engendered a dedicated following and produced our own unique sporting heroes.

Table tennis is one of those sports.  Woodchopping is another.

When it comes to woodchopping, a pioneer sport that even today stands apart, as a code with honour and integrity, there is one man who is a beacon.  Considering Northland woodchopping can claim a myriad of world and national champions, including Jason Wynyard, the reigning king of axemen on the planet today, that is saying something.

But when it come to assessing woodchopping in the north, and those who made it distinctive, one name keeps popping up: the late Innes Earl Davidson.

To be frank, Davidson was the godfather of woodchopping in Northland, a legendary figure in a sporting code where only the strong survive.  And when came to strength, Davidson had bucket loads. 

Davidson began competing in Northland as a 15- year old in the mid 1940’s and came to prominence when he outstripped the big names in an open event at Kaeo two years later.

Ten years on, in 1956 Davidson placed in a New Zealand championship event.  Two years later, he won the first of his 20 national titles.

His woodchopping feats soon became legendary.

Winning the Dave Pretty Memorial Handicap at Hutt Valley from the then reigning lords of woodchopping in the country – Jim Hughes and Dave Lamberton – in 1956 kicked off his stellar career.

Being selected for the first New Zealand team to compete in a six-man relay contest at the Royal Sydney Show in 1960 followed and finishing on the podium in a standing world championship chop in 1968 put him in the headlines.

That New Zealand team unexpectedly won that relay contest and was the first to have their name engraved on Hallstrom Trophy.  Davidson competed a further four times in that event, winning it four times all up.

It was at the same 1960 Sydney Show that Davidson performed in what he considered was highlight of his career: cutting third in the 15 inch standing world championship to Australians Doug and Merve Youd.

As any axemen will tell you, the standing block title at the Sydney show is the Tour France of woodchopping.

A few months later, he won the 16-inch standing world title from Dick (R H) Honey and fellow Northlander Bill Shelford.  Then came the 14 inch world title with another Northlander Pae Wynyard second and Shelford third again.

During his career, Davidson placed in nine world championships winning three titles.

In the hunt for New Zealand titles, Davidson managed a top three finish in every discipline of chopping and sawing.  Besides his 20 national titles, he was second or third 18 times.  He also placed in at least 30 North and South Island championships of which he won 13.

In the 1970s he set 10 New Zealand chopping records for various timbers and diameters.

In his later career, he placed in 16 or more veteran championships winning the standing title seven years in succession.

An unusual aspect of his early career was that he took part in chopping events while serving with the armed forces in Korea.  It is the only known record of the sport in the country. 

Not only was Davidson a brilliant axemen, he also served as coach and administrator.  For many years he served on the executive of the Northland Axemen’s Centre and Association as well as on various promoting committees.

Over the years he accepted many prestigious awards.  He received the magnificent Hytest Cup in 1959 for the most competition points gained throughout the country.  He was awarded the Warner Merit Certificate in 1958 and the following year the Golden Award as the New Zealand’s most outstanding axeman.  He was presented the Services Certificate in 1975 to become one our four to have received all three certificates in the 60 year history of the awards.  In 1978 he was recipient of the Yardley Cup for outstanding services to the sport in the North Island and the same year he was Northlands Sporting Personality of the year. 

The Puhoi Axemens Club was founded in 1962 by the late Ted Cosill, a Puhoi resident and descendent of one of the pioneering Bohemian families that settled in the area. The club was originally named the Mid North Axemens Club as it represented axemen from the Rodney district right down to the Franklin district. As other clubs were formed in the area, the club was re-named the Puhoi Axemens Club to reflect the origin of it's founder.

The club boasts a history of fine axemen, some of whom represented NZ and still today hold NZ records. Sadly one of the club's founding members, Rex Parker, past away recently after more than 40 years service to Puhoi wood chopping.

Today, the Puhoi Axemens Club is stronger than ever with 18 members (16 of which are registered and competing around the wood chopping circuits). The club recently celebrated it's 50th Year Anniversary with a wood chopping carnival at the Puhoi Pub. Half a dozen "old faces" (including Gordon Blythen, Warrick Hallett and Dave Clark) dusted off their axes and came out to cut for the club. This annual event at the Puhoi Pub is regarded as the club's premier chop and always attracts full nominations from axemen all around the North Island.

The vision and memory of Ted Cosill seems likely to live on for another 50 years...... 

Results 

The Puhoi Axemens Club was founded in 1962 by the late Ted Cosill, a Puhoi resident and descendent of one of the pioneering Bohemian families that settled in the area. The club was originally named the Mid North Axemens Club as it represented axemen from the Rodney district right down to the Franklin district. As other clubs were formed in the area, the club was re-named the Puhoi Axemens Club to reflect the origin of it's founder.

The club boasts a history of fine axemen, some of whom represented NZ and still today hold NZ records. Sadly one of the club's founding members, Rex Parker, past away recently after more than 40 years service to Puhoi wood chopping.

Today, the Puhoi Axemens Club is stronger than ever with 18 members (16 of which are registered and competing around the wood chopping circuits). The club recently celebrated it's 50th Year Anniversary with a wood chopping carnival at the Puhoi Pub. Half a dozen "old faces" (including Gordon Blythen, Warrick Hallett and Dave Clark) dusted off their axes and came out to cut for the club. This annual event at the Puhoi Pub is regarded as the club's premier chop and always attracts full nominations from axemen all around the North Island.

The vision and memory of Ted Cosill seems likely to live on for another 50 years......