OAKEY horseman Todd Graham will be aiming to keep this year's title in local hands as he battles against Australia's best at this week's Darling Downs Cutting Club Futurity Show at Toowoomba Showgrounds.
Graham is one of 320 entries competing through until Sunday for nine prestigious pro and non-pro titles and more than $123,000 prize money on offer at the 18th annual Futurity Show.
The event has grown into the second largest of its kind in Australia.
Graham is a two-time winner of his home-town Futurity. After starting out in pony club 25 years ago, he is now one of Australia's leading professional trainers and competitors.
"I've been pretty lucky over the years," Graham said during a break in competition yesterday.
"I've worked hard, won a lot of events and have had plenty of good horses."
Graham trains between 20 and 30 horses at his Aubigny property for a growing market from campdrafting to cutting.
"Training keeps me busy and it more or less goes hand-in-hand with competing.
"But this is really our main focus - to be a part of competitions like this.
"It's a lifestyle I enjoy and I particularly enjoy this event.
"It's a real good show, held in a top arena with good cattle to work with.
"Hopefully I can be up there somewhere amongst the top prize money on the weekend."
The Futurity finals will be decided on Saturday and Sunday.
Taroom's Frank Green has returned this year to try and defend his 2011 DDCC Open Futurity win.
Other local competitors include Jackie Dudley (Biddeston), Dean Hartog (Wyreema) and Heath and Kristie Sinclair (Bell).
Admission is $10.
Bar and canteen facilities are available.
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