A WELSH speed-shearer will swap speed for endurance as he attempts a gruelling 24-hour Shear-A-Thon to raise funds for charity on Friday, June 14.

Owen Davies, a 26-year-old from Presteigne, is undertaking the challenge to raise funds for the Welsh Air Ambulance.

Owen, pictured visiting a Welsh Air Ambulance crew in March, said: “They saved a member of my family after an accident last year and it is such an important charity for the agricultural community, so I wanted to raise money but I wanted to do something different and push myself to the limit at the same time.

"That’s what I’m doing. My target is to raise £6,000 in total, which could pay for four helicopter missions and potentially save four lives.”

Owen will shear as many sheep as possible over 24 hours, which is said to be the physical equivalent of running three marathons back to back.

Owen is well known on the shearing circuit. The fastest lamb shearing record for him was 28 seconds at the Eccleshall Speed Shear Festival in August 2018 and he attributes his greatest achievement to winning at the Royal Bath and West Show in 2015.

Friday's charity event will take place at Heartsease farm, Knighton, starting at noon and continuing through the night before ending on the Saturday. The young farmer will only be allowed to stop for short breaks after each shearing run.

Training started for Owen in February and he said: “I have a personal trainer Andy Watts and my training plan is really hard work. It includes a lot of endurance training, like biking between 80-100 miles a week and I have cleaned up my diet too, cutting out alcohol completely."

Owen has been supported by farm hosts Radnor Hills and a number of sponsors who will all host trade-stands at the event. He will also be spurred on by friends, family and supporters who will enjoy music with a barbecue and bar while he shears.

All are welcome to attend and regular updates can be found on the Facebook event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/2062918103776297/?ti=icl To donate towards Owen’s challenge his JustGiving page is: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/owen-davies33?utm_campaign=pfp-share&utm_content=Owen-Davies33&utm_medium=fundraisingpage&utm_source=Facebook&utm_term=QxX5GzeZW