The 2011 National Limousin Show lived up to its billing as the ‘Super Saturday’ centrepiece of the National Limousin Weekend held to celebrate the breed and British Limousin Cattle Society’s 40th anniversary year in the United Kingdom.
Trueman Euphonium - Intermediate Female Champion, Overall Champion female, Supreme Champion and Exhibitor bred Champion - H Savage & Sons Sire - Wilodge Vantastic, D. Sire Hollybank Oprah
Played out in front of a packed ringside audience of domestic and international visitors, the pedigree show provided the stage for the very best of British Limousin breeding from breeders representative of all four home countries. In what was the largest show of cattle from one breed held in the UK this year, the depth of quality and breeding throughout the classes captivated the crowd through some eight and a half hours of judging. The National Limousin Show, the first held in the UK since 2004, provided the highest level of competition with champion and prize winning animals from the year’s major shows, along with top priced sale animals and young stock full of potential, going head to head for the titles on offer and a prize fund of £20,000.
Bringing a memorable day to conclusion, and to the acclaim of the crowd, it was a win for Northern Ireland as the judge Aled Edwards from the noted Dyfri herd at Home Farm, Cilycwm, Llandovery, Carmarthenshire crowned the two-year-old heifer Trueman Euphonium as the 2011 National Limousin Show Supreme Overall Pedigree Champion. The champion animal was bred and exhibited by the Savage Family of father Henry and his sons Henry Jnr, Benedict, Phelim, and Dermot who run the Trueman herd of just thirteen breeding females at Altnamackin, Newry, N. Ireland. This July 2009 born heifer is by the prolific 42,000gns Wilodge Vantastic and is out of the 1998 born Hollybank Oprah. Hollybank Oprah was herself bought as yearling heifer from Billy Scott at Automart, Portadown and is by Mearnelodge Laird, a Broadmeadows Cannon son. In a taster of things to come, Trueman Euphonium had placed Reserve Overall Supreme Championship at May’s Royal Ulster Show at Balmoral. In May the Savage team had been uncertain about entering Euphonium due to the Bluetongue testing restrictions for Northern Ireland still in place at that time. Following plenty of family consideration the balance was tipped when the Bluetongue testing rules were changed in June. Trueman Euphonium was duly entered and the win now places her firmly in the breed’s pantheon of ‘blue riband’ champions.
Speaking at the close of the judging a delighted Henry Savage said; “This is a fairytale for a herd with 13 cows to compete and win this title against such a high level of competition and quality on show. It is a huge honour, unbelievable, to win such a prestigious show in the 40th anniversary of the breed and Society in the United Kingdom. In December 2009 we sold the heifer Trueman Duet for 38,000gns at Carlisle which in itself was amazing but I think this award tops that,” he said. “As a family the boys are very hands on with the cattle and we discuss at every level what the next steps for the herd are. We knew Euphonium had been good at Balmoral and we did not want to overdo her thereafter. She has been brought on sensibly and in the weeks running up to the Show she has really come on again and just got better and better.” The immediate plans ahead are to put the heifer in-calf to the noted AI bull Sympa.
For the judge Aled Edwards, Trueman Euphonium met the criteria of being the ‘special’ animal to be the Champion of the 2011 National Limousin Show and he felt that his Champion met and surpassed this criteria. Addressing the crowd he said, “I was looking for as much muscle and growth as possible with the retention of both femininity and style at the same time. These qualities were in abundance throughout the female section. The Champion is an outstanding animal with real power and just full of breed character, balance and style. To have that level of quality in a Limousin female of that age is something quite special and she was a very worthy Champion,” he said.
Of the show generally, Aled Edwards said; “Approaching the show I was full of anticipation and really looking forward to the day. However, the cattle forward surpassed my expectations such was the depth of quality throughout. It was a tremendous advert for the future of the breed and a great credit to all the exhibitors. The females were outstanding and as ever, the quality in the youngstock was superb. There were some real prospects in the young bulls and bulls that will, I have no doubt, take the breed a further step forward.” Commenting on being the judge of the 2011 National Limousin Show, Mr. Edwards said, “This has been without question the highlight of my judging career to date. I feel both honoured and quite humble to have been asked in what is such a special year for the breed and Society.” Mr. Edwards, who is also the President of the International Limousin Council, has previously judged at the Royal Highland Show, National French Limousin Show, Carlisle Bull Sale and Southern Ireland’s Ploughing Match.
Trueman Euphonium had come through and placed first in a sensational class of of twelve heifers, full of quality, and arguably forming the strongest class of the day. From there she went on to pick up the Intermediate Champion female title, and the Overall Champion Female title before lifting the day’s Supreme accolade. Rounding off the title wins Trueman Euphonium also lifted the Best Animal Bred by Exhibitor award and prize money amounting to £1650!
All the way from Suffolk, it was a memorable day for DC Wharton, Willow Farm, Mendham, Harleston, who lifted the Overall Supreme Reserve title with their homebred April 2009 born heifer Withersdale Empress. With a consistency in type and breeding of the champions, Withersdale Empress is another by Wilodge Vantastic and is out of the Malibu sired Withersdale Ainsi. Empress had placed Reserve to Trueman Euphonium in the Intermediate Female section before following the Champion through to the Overall Reserve position and with it the Overall Reserve Bred by Exhibitor title. Of his Overall Reserve Champion, Aled Edwards commented; “Again this was an outstanding heifer that was all there and a real credit to the breeders. She is similar in type and character to the Champion and as such was destined to follow her through.”
Earlier, the Whartons had secured a second prize in the day’s fifth class with their February 2010 born Withersdale Faberge who is also by Wilodge Vantastic and out of Millstone Candy.
Wilodge Vantastic breeding was evident throughout the catalogue and amongst the prize winning and championship animals, including the Champion and Reserve, and this has been a continuing feature of the 2011 Limousin sale and show year to date.
In the bulls, the Championship title went to Scotland when Hartlaw Excaliber, exhibited jointly by BT Goldie, Townfoot, Mouswald, Dumfries, along with Messrs D Work, Mains of Dumbreck, Udny, Ellon, Aberdeenshire, lifted the title. Hartlaw Excaliber, who was bred by John McKeen, Hartlaw, Silloth, Wigton,Cumbria, was purchased jointly by the partnership for 22,000gns at the British Limousin Cattle Society’s October 2010 sale at Carlisle. An AI son of the prolific 30,000gns Wilodge Tonka, Hartlaw Excaliber is a heifer’s calf out of the homebred Hartlaw Blueberry. January 2009 born, Hartlaw Excaliber had picked up the Intermediate Male Championship on his way to winning the Overall Male Champion. The judge Aled Edwards commented; “This is a real modern Limousin bull for me. He has obvious carcase qualities and is very strong in breed characteristics. For a heavy bull he has great mobility, balance and structure, and has no heaviness in the shoulder. Structurally very correct he has all the tools to breed progeny with tremendous carcase characteristics. He is a bull with a lot of breeding potential.”
Placing Overall Reserve Male Champion and Junior Male Champion was the Shropshire based Wilodge Fastrac from Miss C Williams, Lodge Hill Farm, Park Lane, Shifnal. An AI son of Wilodge Vantastic, this January 2010 born bull is out of Hazelhead Annie a Sympa sired female that was purchased from breeder Mr JJ Harrison, Hazel Head,Wigton,Cumbria at the 2007 Red Ladies Sale at Carlisle for 2600gns. At the 2011 Royal Welsh Show, Wilodge Fastrac had placed as Overall Male Champion and Overall Supreme Champion as well as picking up the Elite Junior Interbreed Title, being part of the winning Interbreed Pair team, and placing Reserve Junior Interbreed. Earlier this year, Wilodge Fastrac won the breed championship at the Devon County Show, the Junior Interbreed at the East of England, and the Interbreed at Newport Show. Commenting on his Reserve Male Champion, judge Aled Edwards said; “This is a tremendously well grown young bull that carries a lot of muscle along with real style and presence.”
A strong day for the Wilodge team saw the April 2010 born Wilodge Funky take a class win in the young heifers and place Reserve in the Junior Female Championship. Wilodge Funky, who picked up the same title at the Royal Welsh Show, is by the 50,000gns Wilodge Cerberus and is out of the Marron sired Quaish Sunny. The July 2010 born maiden heifer Winnington Fiona also secured a further class win for Wilodge but this time in partnership with Mr & Mrs N Matthews, Pye Brook Farm, Sutton, Stanton Lacy, Ludlow. Winnington Fiona is by the French-bred herd sire, Verdru, and is out the homebred fourteen-year-old cow, Winnington Narcisse, a daughter of the noted Ronick Hawk. She was purchased for 8,000gns from the Winnington Herd reduction sale held by Messrs JS Vance & Son, Upper Grimmer Farm, Minsterley, Shrops.
The Senior Champion Female went to the South West of England region when the cow Brickhill Carol won the title for exhibitors DK Wheeler, Goodiford Mill, Kentisbeare, Nr Cullompton,Devon. February 2007 born, Brickhill Carol was bred by Southern Irish breeder Michael McInerney. By the French bull Lino and out of the Gamin sired Brickhill Venus, Brickhill Carol was shown with her heifer calf at foot, Rosecroft Goldengirl who is by the 35,000gns Grahams Unbeatable. The Wheeler’s Rosecroft team was very much to the fore in the day’s judging with their championship title accompanied by two first prizes in the bull section and a further two second prizes in the female classes.
Taking the Reserve in this section was the first prizewinning Dinmore Daffodil from Paul Dawes, Kipperknowle Farm, Dinmore Manor, Hereford, Herefordshire.
February 2008 born, Daffodil is a Vantastic daughter out of the Talent sired Croftlimousin Primrose and was shown with her Procters Duvalier sired heifer calf at foot. Dinmore Daffodil was breed champion and reserve Interbreed at this year’s Cheshire Show. Another excellent show for the Dinmore team also two further class wins. In the opening class of the show, the September 2010 born Dinmore Foxy, a Procters Duvalier daughter out of Dinmore Caprice, took the red ticket. This was followed later by win for the Wilodge Vantastic sired Dinmore Elegance. This October 2009 maiden heifer is out of the two-time Royal Ulster Champion, Carmorn Voney.
One of the enduring stars of this year’s Limousin show circuit has been the May 2010 born maiden heifer Emslies Fuzzy from breeder and exhibitor Harry Emslie, Kinknockie, Mintlaw, Peterhead. Following a class win in the second class of the day, Emslies Fuzzy went on to win the Junior Female Championship. This made it a notable and unique hat-trick following Junior Female Championship titles at the Royal Welsh and Royal Highland Shows respectively. At the Royal Highland, Fuzzy had also picked up the Overall Reserve Female title. Emslies Fuzzy is by Emslies Colossus, an Objat son, and is out of Ballymoney Noisette. Linking again with previous show successes Ballymoney Noisette is the dam of Ballymoney Veronica, the 2009 Royal Welsh Champion. Wilodge Ritzy, the 2002 Royal Show Champion, is the grand dam of Emslies Fuzzy.
Back in the bulls, the Senior Male Championship was won by Shropshire based breeders Messrs AG Kirton & Sons from Severn Lodge Farm, Buttonbridge Lane, Kinlet, Bewdley with the June 2008 born Bailea Delboy. Bailea Delboy, by the French bred Seringa and out of the Greensons Gigolo daughter Bailea Josephine, was purchased for 8,500gns at the Society’s February 2010 sale held at Carlisle. Taking the Reserve Senior Male Championship was the Mas Du Clo son Sylvandene Defoe from the prolific show team of Mr R Crawford, Rathkeeland, Maguiresbridge, Co Fermanagh. This three year old bull, who is out of the French cow Neige, was bred by Mr Joe Baird, Scarva, Craigavon.
Placing Reserve in the Intermediate Male Section, to the eventual Overall Male Champion, was the French bred bull Eldorado from Messrs RM & HJ Lewis and their Redland herd based at Nash Farm, Cleobury Mortimer, Salop. September 2009 born Eldorado, bred by Msr Bourdarias, is by Neuf and out of Torride.
Reserve in the Junior Male section went to the first prize winner Homebyres Fogan from Messrs J Logan, Humebyres, Kelso. May 2010 born, Homebyres Fogan is by the herd’s noted stock bull Homebyres Vanhee, a Balnacraig Supreme son, who has bred bulls to date up to 15,000gns. Fogan is out of Homebyres Topaz who is a daughter of Sarkley Pepsi.
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