Cumbria-based Charollais sheep breeder Richard Geldard reigned supreme yet again at the annual British Charollais Sheep Society show and sale of commercial rams at Skipton Auction Mart. (Tues, Sept 13)
Richard Geldard with his Charollais ram lamb champion
Trading as JA and R Geldard & Sons at Low Foulshaw Farm, Kendal, the family has dominated the Charollais highlight, landing the championship in both the 2008 and 2010, and finishing as reserve champions in 2009.
Their 2011 title winner was the first prize ram lamb, one of December-born twins by Parkgate Jack, bought as a ram lamb by the Geldards in 2009 from Herbie Kennedy’s Parkgate Charollais flock in Dumfries and reserve champion at this year’s NSA rams show and sale at Builth Wells in Wales.
The Skipton victor, who only the previous week had been first in class at Westmoreland County Show, sold for 800gns (570gns last year) to David Smith, of Lothersdale.
The Geldards sold a total of six ram lambs at an average of 520gns, including a 500gns acquisition by Haorld Smith, of Cawood, Selby.
John Geldard, who is chairman of the Northern Charollais Sheep Society, said: “The breed is growing in popularity year on year. Charollais rams are now recognised as easy lambing terminal sires, especially on Mule ewe lambs, producing prime lambs which are in growing demand both at home and abroad by UK and European butchers.”
Cyril Dougherty with Skipton Charollais reserve champion shearling ram, joined by judge James Drake.
Reserve champion – and pipped again for the second year in succession – was Cyril Dougherty, of Horsley View, Kirby Misperton, Malton, with his first prize shearling ram, a son of Arjane Hardy, bred in Wales by Alwyn Thomas and champion at the Worcester Premier Sale in 2007.
The runner-up’s dam has proved the best breeding ewe in Mr Dougherty’s Shamrock flock, having produced the 2009 Yorkshire and Cleveland area’s Champion of Champions.
At least Mr Dougherty had the consolation of achieving top price in show when his runner-up sold for 850gns (£892.50) to Messrs Sandham, of Bradford Waste Traders, East Carlton, Yeadon.
Mr Dougherty was also responsible for the second prize ram lamb, out of the same dam as his 2010 Skipton reserve champion, acquired at 460gns by T Patchett, of Leeming Bar, Northallerton
Renowned Charollais breeders Charles and Valerie Marwood, whose Foulrice flock is based at Whenby, York, again figured among the prizes in both classes. Their second prize shearling ram sold for 600gns to John Bailey, of Chipping, Preston, and their third prize ram lamb for 620gns, again to Bradford Waste Traders.
The Marwoods also sold further shearling rams at 550gns and 470gns, the former to P & AN Simpson, Harrogate. Deborah Whitcher, of Whenby, sold four shearling rams to a high of 460gns, the other three each making 300gns.
With an increased entry of 69 rams – 16 shearlings and 53 ram lambs - shearlings averaged £465 (£389 last year) and ram lambs £361 (£307).
There was a local show judge in James Drake, from Carleton, himself a commercial Charollais breeder, who said he had found it difficult to choose between the two principals, giving the nod to the ram lamb because it was “cleaner and more stylish, with good future breeding potential.”
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