Osgodby man is British Ploughing Champion

Osgodby man is British Ploughing Champion
Osgodby man is British Ploughing Champion

An Osgodby man has made his community proud by bringing home the coveted Champion title from the British National Ploughing Championships - as well as the honour of representing his country in 2018.

Ashley Boyles of Osgodby qualified for the 67th annual British Championships last year at Barton Upon Humber, which led to him going on to win his class this month in Taunton, Somerset, supported by his wife and three children.

The competition ran over the weekend of October 14 and 15 - with the winner having to fulfil many different criteria to be in with a hope of 
winning.

“I had a 20 by 100 metre field to plough - and it wasn’t just about who could finish the fastest,” said Mr Boyles.

He explained: “Time was a factor and competitors lost points if you went over the three hours allotted time.

“But there are a total of nine aspects that your work is judged on by four judges, including straightness and uniformity of furrows and making sure the old crop is completely buried.

“The first day was spent competing for a place in the final where the competition was whittled down to the last 10 - so I was very pleased to have made it!”

Mr Boyles, who works in the transport industry, said that the key to success was practice and dedication - and that competitors at the Chamionships were by no means farmers by occupation.

He said: “I’ve always worked with tractors, helping out on my grandad’s farm with my dad right from being little, so that’s where I really got into it.

“People are surprised to learn that I don’t work on a farm - but really it’s quite a common thing in ploughing matches.”

And Mr Boyles is sure to be practicing a great deal ahead of the 2018 World Championships in Stuttgart, Germany, for the world title - which he ‘hopes to win’.

He added: “The plan is to take all our equipment across as I will spend a couple of weeks there 
practicing, where I and another team member will represent one of 30 countries taking part.

“We’re hoping to have the family over which will be quite an adventure.”

Mr Boyles’ success is also creating quite an ‘interest’ in Osgodby - particularly with his ‘tractor mad’ son who now has a claim to fame with other children at his school.

Who knows what a World Champion title could bring!