The shearing community has been rocked by the collapse of a man at the Golden Shears on Friday night.
The local man was competing in the veterans woolhandling competition when he collapsed at the event in Masterton.
He was taken to Masterton Hospital in a critical condition, and around 800 spectators were asked to leave the Masterton War Memorial Stadium.
Golden Shears committee member Jills Angus-Burney told RadioLIVE's Rural Exchange a first responder jumped into action.
"A group of us just got some sheets and shield him in privacy while they were working on him to resuscitate him."
She said it was very sobering, and they made the right call to clear the hall and let the medical team do their job.
"It was incredible how the team of people worked to bring him around."
When emergency services arrived she said they were incredibly professional.
"It was shocking because we all know [him] and it's just one of those things. I've only ever seen one other incident like that in the whole 30-something years I've been going.
"It was a good night, and it was a good outcome that he's been taken off to hospital and hopefully he'll be in recovery."
A spokeswoman for the Wairarapa District Health Board says he was stabilised, sedated and ventilated before being transferred to Wellington Hospital's Intensive Care Unit at around 3am.
The Golden Shears is the country's most prestigious shearing event, running over three days.
The results for the veteran woolhandling final have not yet been posted online.
Newshub has chosen not to name the competitor. He is classed as a master woolhandler - to be in that classification, you must have won more than 15 open competitions, five in particular.
He took out the Junior woolhandler at the Golden Shears in 1988. Records also show he won the open competition at the Golden Shears in 1992.
Shearing Sports New Zealand has been approached for comment.