The 80-cow Beechmount Herd owned by brother and sister duo Robert and Caroline McConnell savoured success in the Ayrshire championship at the 17th annual multi-breed calf show, held at Dungannon Farmers’ Mart.
The Templepatrick-based dairy herd claimed the supreme championship and the honourable mention award at the one-day show.
Overall winner was the December 2018 Marbrae Bigtime daughter Beechmount Marie Girl 24. Her dam is the home-bred Beechmount Marie Girl 15 – a class winner at the calf show in 2017, and a former second prize winner at the national All Breeds All Britain Calf Show.
The honourable mention prize winner also hailed from the herd’s prolific Marie Girl family. The award went to Beechmount Marie Girl 23, who stood second to her herd mate in a strong class boasting 10 entries.
Also by Marbrae Bigtime, this one was bred from Beechmount Marie Girl 11 – a maternal sister to the dam of the day’s overall champion.
Claiming the reserve championship ribbons was the yearling heifer Kirkinriola HF Shona bred and exhibited by Martin King and family from Ballymena. Sired by Hunnington Famous, this one is a daughter of Kirkinriola PRG Shona.
Welsh judge Iwan Thomas praised the quality of the Ayrshire females on parade. “It has been a fantastic show, and I’d like to thank the Ulster Ayrshire Breeders’ Club for its invitation and hospitality.
“The champions are like peas in a pod, and boast super balance and tremendous rump structure.”
The showmanship classes also attracted a strong entry. Top honours went to the senior class winner Jessica Hall from Mallusk. The runner-up was intermediate competitor Cameron Carson from Ballymena; with the honourable mention award going to Stephanie Farren from Ballyclare.
Club chairman Stewart Baxter thanked the judge and the show sponsors, OB Construction, United Feeds and Farm Wardrobe.
Results from the showring:
Fullerton Trophy for the champion handler: Jessica Hall. Reserve: Cameron Carson.
Ardmore Trophy for the supreme champion calf: Robert and Caroline McConnell. Reserve: R and M King.
Junior competitor, under seven-years-old – 1, Jaden Farren, Ballyclare.
Intermediate competitor, aged 8 to 15 years-old – 1, Cameron Carson, Ballymena; 2, Alissa Marrs, Ballymena; 3, Jack King, Ballymena.
Senior competitor, aged 16 to 26-years-old – 1, Jessica Hall, Mallusk; 2, Stephanie Farren, Ballyclare; 3, Katie Gordon, Ballyclare.
Heifer, born on or after 01/03/19 – 1, Stewart and Nyree Baxter, Erne Blink Ophelia by De La Plaine Blink; 2, Stewart and Nyree Baxter, Erne Blink Sea Lily by De La Plaine Blink; 3, Thomas Gordon, Ballyclare, Grove Dusk 20 by Palmyra Calimero Blackjack.
Heifer, born between 01/12/18 and 28/02/19 – 1, Robert and Caroline McConnell, Templepatrick, Beechmount Marie Girl 24 by Marbrae Bigtime; 2, Robert and Caroline McConnell, Beechmount Marie Girl 23 by Marbrae Bigtime; 3, R and M King, Ballymena, Kirkinriola Kla Margie by Kirkinriola McLaggan.
Heifer, born between 01/09/18 and 30/11/18 – 1, R and M King, Kirkinriola HF Shona by Hunnington Famous; 2, McLean Family, Bushmills, Priestland PRG Sea Lily by Palmyra Reality Gibbs; 3, Robert and Caroline McConnell, Beechmount Marie Girl 22 by Rosehill Vitality.
Heifer, born between 01/01/18 and 31/04/18 – 1, Robert and Caroline McConnell, Beechmount Heather Bloom 3 by Rosehill Mastercard; 2, Robert and Caroline McConnell, Beechmount Hester 17 by Palmyra Tri-Star Burdette; 3, Stewart and Nyree Baxter, Erne Oblique Pretty by Hilltown Oblique.