Locals pipped by Aussie axemen

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A team of South Island axemen – including half with Nelson ties – was chopped down by an impressive New South Wales team at the first ever Speight’s Ale House Wood Chop on Sunday.

The six man South Island team was beaten at the last stand with the previous five competitors from each team going chop for chop.

The team included Atawhai’s Bradley Wallace, who won the underhand competition on the day, former Nelsonian and current world champion Adam Lowe and former Nelson policeman Daniel Gilsenan.

The event, at the Speight’s Ale House in Stoke, also hosted various underhand, standing chop and sawing events with a corporate challenge giving those in the audience a chance to give the sport a go.

Nelson Axemens Club member Bill Nichols says the event was a huge success and they are thinking of making it an annual event.

“I think the public liked the teams’ race and people could identify with the teams and really get in behind it.”

The Australian choppers took home most of the major prizes but Adam Lowe and John Atkin won the sawing competition and then faced off against the winners of the corporate challenge, Team Weiner. Fair to say the world champions won the saw-off with ease. The axemen will next compete at the Nelson A&P Show.