Students from Kempsey High School have competed in the Brisbane Ekka's virtual judging competition and came away with a number of impressive wins.
10 students from Year 7 to Year 12 competed in a number of different virtual judging categories including dairy, led steers, poultry, stud cattle and horses.
Kempsey High School agriculture teacher Gavin Saul said expanding the range of categories the students entered will helped them improve their skills in the industry.
"The virtual judging competitions have given students a chance to expand their learning and continue to build on their skills," he said.
"It has been a great support to students so they continue to upskill during this time when regional shows and competitions have been cancelled.
"Also, having the students judge in different sections allowed them to further their skill set and gain more experience judging different animals."
There were 3300 competitors involved in the judging competition, with Kempsey High School students coming away with some impressive results.
In the steer judging category, Year 7 student Ella Saul was awarded Junior Champion while Year 10 student Freya Weismantel took out the Senior Champion position and Year 8 student Makayla Lawrence was awarded Junior Reserve Champion in the dairy section.
The three girls said virtual judging competitions have both positives and negatives.
"It was really interesting to have so many different categories. At shows, we mostly are in the stud and beef sections, but to try judging different animals was a good learning experience," Freya said.
"Virtual judging does have some challenges, but the videos are helpful and we're able to continue expanding our judging skills.
"I had never judged chooks before, so that was an interesting learning experience," Freya said.
Ella and Makayla said the guide videos allowed them to gain more confidence when participating in the competition.
"They do have videos for us to watch which were really helpful and gave us tips on how to best judge the animal. It was a really good experience," Ella said.
"The guide videos did really help with my confidence when I was judging," Makayla added.
On their impressive wins, the girls said they're proud to have come out on top when competing against students from across the country.
"There were 416 students in both the junior and senior steer judging sections, so it's pretty exciting to be able to top them," Freya said.
"My section was from age 15 to 25, so to be one of the youngest in the senior division and be awarded Senior Champion was pretty special."
"It's a really big achievement for us overall," Ella added.
Mr Saul said the competition was a great experience for all of the students who were involved.
"It was a very large competition, with over 3000 entries. I'm very impressed with the students, they took on the challenge and gave it their best," he said.
"These sort of opportunities will allow the students to continue to gain more skills. It also helps the younger students to get motivated to be involved and improve their judging skills at a young age.
"The depth of discussions I heard between students and seeing them compare notes showed me they are interested in improving their skills and getting involved in these sort of competitions."
The 10 students involved in the Ekka virtual judging competition from Kempsey High School were, Alice McNee, Peter Corton, Logan Browne, Ella Saul, Freya Weismantel, Paton Simpson, Riley Mitchell and Seth Osborne.