A very correct heifer with balance and dairy strength was how County Wexford judge Gary Jones described the Holstein champion at the 13th annual multi-breed dairy calf show, held at Moira.
Overall winner was the yearling heifer Printshop Alexander Belle 64, exhibited by Gaston and John Wallace, and herdsman Paul Thompson. Sired by Golden Oaks ST Alexander, she is backed by eleven generations of VG and EX dams, and is out of Printshop Saratoga Belle VG87 – one of 270-cows in the Nutt’s Corner-based herd.
“She isn’t the biggest heifer, but when I break her down part by part she is the most complete heifer in the championship line-up,” said the judge. “She is right at twelve o’clock.”
The Printshop team was congratulated by sponsors Denise Rafferty from Thompsons, and Alan Armstrong from Western Farm Enterprises who sponsored the exhibitor-bred championship award.
Claiming the reserve overall and reserve exhibitor-bred award was the eight-month-old Ardmore Doorman Freda, bred by William Crawford, Brookeborough, who was ably assisted by his grandson Thomas Barnett.
Thomas was making his debut in the Holstein showring, and also collected a very commendable second prize in the junior showmanship class.
Ardmore Doorman Freda was sired by Val Bisson Doorman, and is out of the home-bred Ardmore Windbrook Freda VG86 (2yr) who is projected to do 8,600 kilos in her first lactation.
Gary Jones added: “The reserve champion is a well-grown heifer, similar in type to the champion. She has balance, a good rump, nice open dairy rib structure, and sound legs and feet.”
The day’s honourable mention award went to Sam and John McCormick’s Hilltara Doorman Apple. This six-month-old class winner was also sired by Val Bisson Doorman, and is bred from Hilltara Dundee Apple VG87 (3yr) – one of 300 cows in the Bangor-based herd. Her maternal granddam KHW Goldwyn Aiko ET was Holstein International’s 2015 Red Carrier Cow of the Year.
“I’m following a similar pattern. The honourable mention winner is another well-grown heifer calf, displaying dairy strength, beautiful open rib, balance and a hard top.”
The showmanship section was sponsored by Denis Torren from DT Services.
Overall winner was Lauren Henry from Stranocum, who was placed first in the senior showmanship class. Runner-up was Desmond McCorry, Aghalee, winner of the intermediate class. Mature class leader Leiza Montgomery, Saintfield, took the honourable mention title.
Gary Jones concluded: “The showmanship competition was of a very high standard, and the top placed competitors were very close and made no mistakes. The champion and reserve handlers were calm, alert and competent throughout. They were always in control of their calves, and set them up quickly and efficiently. I have no doubt they will do well at nation level.”
HYB co-ordinator Andrew Kennedy thanked everyone who contributed to the success of the event. “Thank you to our sponsors, stewards, and to Michael Taaffe for his excellent commentary, and the use of the Moira facilities.”
Class results include:
Novice handler, under 8 years old – 1, Erin Stinson; 2, Isabella Gregg; 3, Ava Montgomery.
Junior handler, aged 8 to 12 years old – 1, Brian Weatherup; 2, Thomas Barnett; 3, Amy Gregg.
Intermediate handler, aged 13 to 15 years old – 1, Desmond McCorry; 2, Jack Nevin; 3, Rebekah Williamson.
Senior handler, aged 16 to 20 years old – 1, Lauren Henry; 2, Heather Martin; 3, Sarah Doupe.
Mature handler, aged 21 to 26 years old – 1, Leiza Montgomery; 2, Kate Richardson; 3, Clare Milligan.
Heifer, born on or after 01/02/14 – 1, Sam and John McCormick, Hilltara Doorman Apple by Val Bisson Doorman; 2, John Hamilton and Sons, Ards Balisto Sara by De Su Balisto; 3, McLean Family, Priestland 5800 Dreams Sizzle by Heavenly Golden Dreams.
Heifer, born between 01/12/13 and 31/01/14 – 1, William Crawford and Thomas Barnett, Ardmore Doorman Freda by Val Bisson Doorman; 2, Sam and John McCormick, Hilltara Atwood Devine by Maple Downs IGW Atwood; 3, Gregg Family, Frocess Uno Mag by Amighetti Numero Uno.
Heifer, born between 01/10/13 and 30/11/13 – 1, McLean Family, Priestland 5724 LG Chanel by Genervations Liquid Gold; 2, McLean Family, Priestland 5720 Windbrook Helga by Gillette Windbrook; 3, Sam and John McCormick, Hilltara Liquid Gold Charlotte by Genervations Liquid Gold.
Heifer, born between 01/08/13 and 30/09/13 – 1, Gaston and John Wallace, Printshop Alexander Belle 64 by Golden Oaks ST Alexander; 2, Sam and John McCormick, Hilltara Atwood Maude 5 by Maple Downs IGW Atwood; 3, Noel and Pauline McCorry and Sons, Derrymore Windbrook Jodie by Gillette Windbrook.
Heifer, born between 01/06/13 and 31/07/13 – 1, McLean Family, Priestland Uno Annice by Amighetti Numero Uno.
Heifer, born between 01/04/13 and 31/05/13 – 1, McLean Family, Priestland 5656 Fever Heather by Crackholm Fever; 2, Sarah Doupe, Clandeboye Franc Helen by Clandeboye Saver Franc; 3, Noel and Pauline McCorry and Sons, Derrymore Artic Scarlet by Greenlea Artic.