The winner of last year's Marlborough regional Silver Secateurs Competition is back from Gisborne to defend his title at the competition on Friday.
Rakakao Smiler has won the Marlborough Silver Secateurs title in 2006, 2009 and last year and despite saying he would retire, he could not resist entering the vine pruning competition for a fourth regional title.
"I've come down from Gisborne to return the trophy I won last year, so I might as well give it another shot," he said.
Mr Smiler was also part of the Marlborough team that won the national Silver Secateurs title in Auckland last year and he was disappointed to hear the national competition had been discontinued.
The national competition was run by New Zealand Winegrowers. Wine Marlborough general manager Marcus Pickens said the competition was dropped after a review in favour of building on a wider range of skills required in the vineyard.
The regional competition will be held at the Yealands Estate Grovetown vineyard on State Highway 1 north of Blenheim on Friday from 9.30am.
- The Marlborough Express