On Saturday, January 21, the Northern Ireland Young Limousin Breeders Club (NIYLB) continued from strength to strength as they experienced a successful calf spectacular at Ballymena Livestock Market in conjunction with the BLCS Limousin female sale.
Kicking off the morning eight enthusiastic young breeders aged from eight to 25 years old competed in the young handlers competition which entailed dressing and showing a Limousin calf, for the ultimate prize of champion young handler 2017.
Judge, Margaret McQuiston from the Brigadoon Charolais Herd has many years experience dressing and showing cattle around the show circuit and was looking for high standards with regard to presentation and mannerism in the show ring.
The points scored in both elements were combined to reveal the winners. In the junior class Victoria Workman (11) from Larne caught the judges’ eye and took first place, followed by an impressive Kile Diamond (12) from Garvagh and Joseph McGookin (15) from Ballyclare. Senior class winner was an inspiring Louise Allan (23) from Scotland closely followed by Adam McGookin (19) from Ballyclare and Eamon McGarry (25) from Crumlin. The two class winners then presented their animals for a final time in the show ring in front of Mrs McQuiston. After much consideration Louise Allan was awarded champion young handler for 2017, closely followed by Victoria Workman receiving reserve champion young handler 2017. Mrs McQuiston congratulated all the young handlers who competed in the competition and complimented the high standard of stockmanship and showmanship that was evident from all NIYLB competitors throughout the event.
With the young handlers classes completed, the Calf Spectacular got under way.
Martin Conway, owner of the renowned Craigatoke Limousin Herd in Plumbridge, had the unenviable task of judging an outstanding show of pedigree and commercial Limousin calves oozing style, quality and correctness which was highlighted by his line up of first prize winners. The pedigree championship consisted of Keadyview Mighty, owned and exhibited by Barny O’Kane and Sons; Ballyhone Missmoneypenny, owned and exhibited by Brian Hall; Clydevalley Mason, owned and exhibited by Robert and Stephen Clyde; Deerpark McGregor and Deerpark Massie, owned and exhibited by Connor and Ryan Mulholland.
After careful consideration Mr Conway finally selected the impressive Ballyhone Missmoneypenny as his overall pedigree champion. This February 2016 heifer calf is a full sister to Ballyhone Lucas who was the intermediate champion at the Northern Ireland Limousin Championships at Antrim Show in 2016 and is sired by the popular Ampertaine Foreman.
Reserve pedigree champion was Keadyview Mighty. This stylish January 2016 bull calf is also sired by Ampertaine Foreman and comes from a strong dam line of breeding consisting of noted sires such as Glenrock Ventura and Ampertaine Abracadabra.
Mr Conway was then tasked with judging the remarkable Limousin commercial classes that demonstrate the strength of the Limousin breed. Holding her own in the under 400kg commercial calf class was July born heifer Bexy Boo, sired by Wilodge Vantastic and owned and exhibited by Robert and Leanne Workman.
To follow Keith Williamson had double success in the over 400kg calf class as his two commercial heifers Valentine and Dakota, both sired by Elite Forever Brill, a Wilodge Vantastic son, stood first and second in their class. Valentine went on to safely secure overall commercial champion and winner of the McDonalds of Sprucefield Cup for the best exhibitor bred animal of the show which was followed by Dakota taking the reserve commercial championship. Valentine’s full sister was a winner at last year’s NI Commercial Spectacular Show and the prestigious Scottish Winter Fair so she is making a great start to her show career in 2017.
Special prizes were awarded to several NIYLB members. Frank McAuley from the Carmorn Herd won the Leslie Hood Perpetual Challenge Cup for the best heifer on the day of the show, owned by a NIYLB. Frank exhibited 2nd prize winner Carmorn Melaine, sired by Millgate Fame.
Furthermore Adam McGookin (19) and Kile Diamond (12) won the David Adams Heaslip Memorial Endeavour Trophy for showing dedication to the NIYLB club throughout the year by competing in stock judging and young handler competitions.
The Calf Spectacular has grown in popularity amongst exhibitors and spectators alike, and none of this would be possible without the generous support of the sponsors who not only provide monetary reward but give of their time on the day of the show, to compliment and congratulate prize winners.
The club would therefore like to thank their sponsors: the Bank of Ireland, British Limousin Cattle Society, Cogent, Doherty and Gray, Firmount Veterinary, Greenmount Country Stores, HVS Animal Health, Jenkins Butchers, John Thompsons, Norbrook, the Northern Counties Co-operative Enterprise Ltd, the Northern Ireland Limousin Club, Semen Store and Quails Fine Foods.
Young handler results:
Class 1: Junior young handler – 1st Victoria Workman, 2nd Kile Diamond, 3rd Joseph McGookin.
Class 2: Senior young handler – 1st Louise Allan, 2nd Adam McGookin, 3rd Eamon McGarry.
Champion young handler – Louise Allan.
Reserve champion young handler – Victoria Workman
Calf Spectacular results:
Class 3: Bull born on or after 1st Jan 2016– 31st Mar 2016, 1st (124) B O’Kane and Sons, 2nd (125) D and R McFarland, 3rd (122) F McAuley.
Class 4: Heifer born on or after 1st Jan 2016– 31st Mar 2016, 1st (138) B Hall, 2nd (135) F McAuley, 3rd (134) J Alexander.
Class 5: Bull born on or after 1st Apr 2016 – 30th June 2016, 1st (149) R Clyde, 2nd (142) D Smyth, 3rd (143) D Smyth.
Class 6: No entries
Class 7: Bull born on or after 1st July 2016, 1st (157) C and R Mulholland, 2nd (156) SandJ Allen, 3rd (161) Elliott.
Class 8: Heifer born on or after 1st July 2016, 1st (166) C and R Mulholland, 2nd (167) J Alexander.
Overall pedigree Limousin champion: B Hall
Reserve pedigree Limousin champion: B O’Kane and Sons
Class 9: Commercial Limousin calf under 400kgs, 1st R and L Workman, 2nd D and R Simpson, 3rd R Miller.
Class 10: Commercial Limousin Calf over 400kgs, 1st K Williamson, 2nd K Williamson, 3rd S J Smyth.
Champion commercial Limousin: K Williamson
Reserve champion commercial Limousin: K Williamson
Best exhibitor animal: K Williamson
Best young breeder’s home bred heifer calf: Frank McAuley
David Adams Heaslip Memorial Endeavour Award: Adam McGookin and Kile Diamond.