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Stackyard News Sep 2011

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Makin Debut Championship Coup at Skipton Texel Highlight

A recent recruit to the Northern Area Texel Sheep Breeders Association made an immediate impact on his first-ever appearance at their 30th anniversary show and sale of pedigree rams and females at Skipton Auction Mart when landing supreme championship honours. (Thus & Fri, Sept 15 & 16)

Philip Makin with his Skipton Texel supreme champion.

Philip Makin with his Skipton Texel supreme champion.

North Yorkshire breeder Philip Makin, of Williambeck Farm, Chop Gate, Bilsdale, Helmsley, who only joined Northern Area Texel Sheep Breeders last year, saw his first prize-winning shearling ram and male champion go on to be crowned the overall title winner.

The March, 2010-born victor, Williambeck Royal Flush, had already played his cards right in the show arena this year, clinching the reserve championship at Driffield and first prize in class at Ryedale.

He is a well-bred son of the 6,000gns AI sire Llangwyn Noddy (by Cowal Monarch Of The Glen), out an ewe bought by Mr Makin three years ago from Jeremy Taylor’s Smallhouse flock at nearby Broughton. The supreme champion sold locally for 1,500gns to John Mellin, of Mill House, Long Preston.

Another John Mellin - he and his wife Linda have the renowned Hull House Texel flock at nearby Hellifield – beat off strong competition with a bid of 4,100gns (£4,305), top price in show by a long way and one of the highest ever prices paid at Skipton for a Texel female, when claiming the third prize shearling ewe from North Craven breeder and near neighbour Stuart Currie’s Beautry flock at Rathmell, Settle.

Stuart Currie and his Skipton Texel 4,100gns shearling ewe, joined by buyer John Mellin.

Texel 4,100gns shearling ewe

The 19-month-old, fresh off the farm, was the first daughter of Sportsman’s Pasternak (by Seisiog Lotto) to be sold by Mr Currie, which bodes well for future progeny. He acquired the sire two years ago and said: “We have had some lovely females by him – today’s has been a favourite all summer.”

Mr Mellin has big plans for his new acquisition. He said he had bought the ewe because of her impressive bloodlines and “tremendous carcase and character,” regarding her as an ideal match for Castlecairn Red Arrow (by Glenside Forsyth), purchased jointly with the Booth family in Wigglesworth for 4,000gns last year and already responsible for a 32,000gns lamb.

The strong shearling rams class, one of the best in recent years, was also responsible for the reserve male and reserve supreme champion, another 19-month-old, from South Yorkshire breeder Peter Longdin, of Wellingley Grange, Tickhill, Doncaster.

The sire, Langlands Rockstar (by Douganhill Monarch) was bought by Mr Longdin as a lamb from a Kelso-based Texel breeding consortium. He said it was his best-ever result since he started showing at the Skipton fixture some 20 years ago. This was reflected in the selling price of 2,200gns when Rockstar joined H A Sawrey at Great Urswick, Ulverston.

The same price was achieved by the third prize shearling ram, Stonebridge Rambo, a February, 2010-born son of Drumpark President, from South Yorkshire breeders Steve and Sherry Richardson, of Mount Pleasant Farm, Great Houghton, Barnsley. The buyers were P & S Mellor, of Little Hayfield, High Peak in the Peak District.

Lot No 1 in the catalogue was a fortuitous draw in producing the first prize March, 2010-born shearling ewe and female champion from the Manderlea flock of former Northern Area Texel chairman Mark Keighley and his wife Helen, from Leathley, Otley.

By Procters Prime Minister, acquired by the Keighleys two years ago, and - according to Mark - out of one of the best home-bred ewes in his flock, the leading female sold for 1,000gns to R N Kirby & Son at Ainderley Steeple, Northallerton.

The Keighleys were also in action at the ringside when paying 900gns for a home-bred ram lamb son of Anglezarke Oracle from Mrs C Woodward, of Holyrood Farm, Balne, Goole.

The Keighleys will now be looking to defend the title they have won five times in the last six years at the next big Texel show and sale at Skipton, the annual winter fixture for females in December.

Helen Keighley also runs the Wigglesworth Texel flock in partnership with her mother, Mrs Freda Booth, at Wigglesworth Hall Farm, Long Preston. They had a shearling ram sell at 1,900gns to Roger and Jason Craddock, Bolton by Bowland, along with a second shearling ram knocked down at 1,150gns to David and Robin Booth, Feizor, Austwick.

The reserve female champion, for the second year in succession, emerged from the Tophill flock of David Houghton at Isherwood Farm, Affetside, Bury. His second prize shearling ewe, bought as a ram lamb, is by Knock Orion, jointly purchased for 10,000gns and a Great Yorkshire Show reserve male champion.

Orion was also responsible for a gimmer lamb that was chosen as overall champion at the Texel Club Carlisle sale. His Skipton shearling sold locally for 750gns to John Stephenson, Bordley Green.

Top performer in the ram lamb class was the February-born Loxley Starmaker from John and Alison North, of Fenwick, Doncaster. He is a son of Garngour Patriot (by Kiltariff Osprey), bought by the Norths two years ago and second prize shearling ram at last year’s Great Yorkshire Show, also landing numerous inter-breed championships.

The ram lamb, itself first prize winner this year at both Otley and Kilnsey Shows and seventh in a strong class at the Great Yorkshire, sold for 1,600gns to M P Dent, Brafferton, Darlington. The Norths also sold a second ram lamb at 860gns to H Chapman & Son, Middleton in Lonsdale.

John Mellin entries were in big demand. He sold two shearling ewes at 1,000gns and 900gns to William Watson, like the vendor based in Hellifield, as foundation ewes for a new flock, plus ewe lambs at 460gns and 400gns to WA Warren, Cleckheaton, and Richard Harrison, Skipton, respectively.

Mr Mellin’s consignment of shearling rams included a 1,050gns acquisition by the Newsome family in Todmorden, and a 1,000gns sale to Richard Wilson, Beckwithshaw. He also sold a ram lamb at 950gns to Jeremy Taylor at Broughton.

David Towell’s Moor Top flock at Upper Leys Farm, Glusburn Moor, Keighley, which has been responsible for some high priced entries at the Skipton fixture in recent years, was on the mark again when a shearling ewe daughter of Stainton O2, purchased from Peter Woof’s flock at Kendal, sold at 1,150gns to 18-year-old James Frankland, of Newhall Farm, Rathmell.

James, who started breeding Texels as a 15-year-old, also bought a full sister to his latest acquisition at last year’s Skipton fixture. He now has 25 Texel ewes.

David Towell’s offering of shearling rams also created keen interest at the ringside, his entries including a 1,700gns acquisition by John Stephenson, Bordley, another at 1,600gns to the Coates family in, Stainforth, Settle, and a third at 1,000gns to H Harvey & Son, Norwich. In addition, Mr Towell sold a shearling ewe at 850gns to George Riby, Stonehills, Bridlington.

Other high priced performers were: Shearling rams - John Howard, Great Ayton, 1,550gns to K W Gamble, Easingwold. Mark Ireland, Whalley, 1,100gns to David Wilson, Harome, Helmsley. Angela Nairey, Blackburn, 1,250gns to H & C Burkill, Harpham, Driffield. Graham Taylor, Thirsk, 1,200gns to G W Turner, Skelton on Ure, Ripon.

Show judge Frank Rushton, whose multi award-winning Fresh Fields Texel flock is based at Pike Hall, Matlock, praised the overall quality of the 461-strong entry. He said: “It reflected great credit on the Northern Area club. The shearling ram class was particularly notable.

“Both the champion and reserve were strong tups, but the victor got the nod because of its depth of body and scale. He also covered the ground very well. The runner-up was a good skinned, solid sheep. There was not a lot between them.”

Commenting on breed trends in general, Northern Area Texel Sheep Breeders chairman Spiros Spyrou, of Gib Farm, Hebden Bridge, said: “Breeders are thinking more about the commercial men these days, in terms of both carcase and skin. There is little doubt that carcases are improving.”

Results: Shearling ewe – 1 and female champion MA Keighley, Manderlea, Leathley, 2 and reserve female champion JD Houghton, Tophill, Affetside, 3 SC Currie, Beautry, Rathmell. Ewe lamb – 1 J Mellin, Hull House, Hellifield, 2 TM Verity, Kirkdale, Kirkby Overblow, 3 Mrs C Woodward, Holyrood, Balne.

Shearling ram – 1 and male and supreme champion P Makin, Williambeck, Bilsdale, 2 and reserve male and seupreme champion HM&PC Longdin, Wellingley, Tickhill, 3 S&S Richardson, Stonebridge, Great Houghton. Ram lamb - JL North, Loxley, Goole, 2 J Mellin, Hull House, 3 JM&M Perrings, Pergill, Rathmell.

Shearling rams sold at an overall average of £618.40, up £55.56 on last year’s corresponding sale, with shearling ewes averaging £401.40, an increase of £78.40 on 2010.Ram lambs sold to 1600gns, av £339.30 (-£0.59) and aged rams to 200gns.

Chief prices and flock averages were: Shearling rams large flock - Moor Top to £1,785, av £1,151, Stonebridge to £2,310, av £1,045, Wellingley to £2310, av £864, Hull House to £1,050, av £799, Parkholme to £945, av £779, Fimber to £893, av £730, Meinspride to £1,313, av £718. Small flock - Quercus to £1,628, Wigglesworth to £1,995, av £1,243, Williambeck to £1,575, av £1,129, Stonecliffe to £840.

Ram Lambs large flock - Loxley to £1,680, av £773, Hull House to £735, av £670, Stainton to £525, av £384, Pergill to £546, av £380, Anglezarke to £420, av £276,Tophill to £399, av £269, Beautry to £347, av £263, Alwent to £441 av £415 Small flock - Holyrood to £900, Stonecliffe to £315, North Valley to £305, Deneside to £1029 av £683, Heyworth Lodge to £473, av £446.

Shearling Ewes - Beautry to £4,305, av £1,481, Hull House to £1,050, av £731, Moor Top to £1,176, av £676, Top Hill to £788, av £434, Manderlea to £1,050, av £413, Small House to £441, av £368, Stainton to £420, av £361, Fimber to £525, av £341, Gib Farm to £420, av £339. Ewe Lambs - Hull House to £483, av £410.

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