A chat with Germany's Jan Juppe

Germany's Jan Juppe has quickly become a popular figure since arriving in the south and contesting both the Northern Southland Community Shears and Southland Shears.

But, he will contest the 2017 World Championships next weekend with a set of blade shears in his hand after he gained selection by winning the German blades title after shearing a grand total of four sheep. Just in case you thought that was a misprint, I'll write it again. Four sheep. In total. Ever!

Lucky he had a good trainer. Some guys called YouTube! Here's Jan's story ...

Tell us this story of how you got in to blade shearing because you've only literally just picked the things up I hear?

Yeah, I went to the Internet, looked up how the boys did it in the Golden Shears and I thought the gear is a big part of it.

So, I went to Phil Oldfield, rang him up and said I need a decent set of blades so he actually made three blades up for me and sent them over to Germany.

So, before the German Champs I shore four sheep with the blades, while I was watching YouTube and the sharp gear made me quick. It might not be quick enough to be in the finals or semi-finals but at least I will give it a crack.

But it was quick enough to win the German Championships and you surprised a few with how quick you were, right?

Well, I surprised Mark Armstrong who is in the Scottish blades team as well because I was half a sheep ahead of him which was just bloody awesome. He looked at me like "What? What's going on there," and I just said take a look at my gear it's brand new made up from New Zealand so I tried to give him a hard time really.

And you've fine-tuned things since or are you just keeping an eye on YouTube?

I actually have registered for the International Training Days (this week at Mount Linton Station for international competitors), it's hard for the contractors to get sheep organised for those days and competitions and even for work with the weather. It's supposed to be summer, but it's 15 degrees below in Germany but hopefully it will get warmer soon and we'll get some sheep under our belts.

Are you getting much practice in on the blades because you won't get too much opportunity working, will you?

Well Darin (Forde) has got some sheep of his own so we'll have a crack at them. I'll have to get them sharpened again and we'll see how we go there.

Have you got Darin Forde on the end of a set of blades yet?

(Laughs) Well he's said that he's never shorn a sheep with blades before but I'm going to get him to shear one so that will be a good day.

Well done mate, congratulations on your selection and we look forward to seeing you in action.

Thank you very much.


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