Limousin Bull Sells for New World Record 120,000gns 2012-02-19
In a sensational day’s trading for the Limousin breed, Dolcorsllwyn Fabio, bred by Machynlleth, Powys-based Glyn & Nia Vaughan, smashed the breed world record price for a Limousin bull, and also the UK & European bovine record, when selling for 120,000gns (£126,000) at the British Limousin Cattle Society’s February Bull Sale held at Carlisle’s Borderway Mart on Saturday 18th February.
The world record price rounded off the best pedigree sale ever held in the United Kingdom which saw 131 bulls sell to an average of £8242.67, itself a UK all-breeds record average, and up by over a remarkable £2,000 on the previous figure. Twenty-five bulls in all sold at 10,000gns or more, mainly to commercial purchasers, and in front of one of the largest crowds seen at Harrison & Hetherington’s Borderway Mart.
The UK & European bovine record, and world Limousin record, had previously been the 100,000gns (£105,000) paid for another Limousin bull, Haltcliffe Vermount, in February 2006.
The new record holder Dolcorsllwyn Fabio is a son of the noted UK Limousin sire Fieldson Alfy, himself a 37,000gns bull, and is out of homebred dam Dolcorsllwyn Awen, a daughter of the French sire Mas Du Clo. On the Friday, the September 2010 born Dolcorsllwyn Fabio had stood as both Junior and Overall Supreme Champion in the pre-sale show, the herd’s first Supreme Championship, judged by Gary Swindlehurst, Farm Manager of the noted Procters Farms, Slaidburn, Lancashire.
The three days of inspections, pre-sale showing, and the sale day morning itself, had seen tremendous crowds attend – heightening the sense that something special was about to unfold when the sale bell finally rang at 10am. Right from the off the tone was set with the third bull in the ring, Plumtree Farley, making 13,000gns and high prices being attained with regularity thereafter. By the time the Champion arrived to be sold, an incredible atmosphere had been generated by the momentum of the sale. Racing through the gears with H&H auctioneer James Little to the new world record mark, Dolcorsllwyn Fabio was finally knocked down for 120,000gns to the Whinfellpark pedigree herd of Allan Jenkinson, Clifton Moor Farm, Penrith. Commenting on their record purchase Nick Scholefield, the Estate Manager at Whinfellpark said: “We saw this bull for the first time over the course of the show and sale. He is a bull with tremendous width, shape and conformation with excellent breeding behind him that is unrelated to the present herd. It’s a big price to pay but it is an investment in the future of Whinfellpark Limousins. The herd is run as a business and we are willing to spend the money for the right cattle to take the herd to the next level. For us, Fabio is another ‘marquee’ bull of the breed and similar in that respect to Wilodge Cerberus.” No stranger to the big prices, Mr Jenkinson’s previous top purchase is the 50,000gns Wilodge Cerberus. From their 150 calving female herd, established in 2002, Whinfellpark have sold females to 14,000gns and bulls to 12,000gns to date.
The immediate plans for Dolcorsllwyn Fabio are that he will go straight into isolation and thereafter, pending all his tests, semen will be collected for world-wide use.
Dolcorsllwyn Fabio in the sale ring
It was a memorable and emotional day for Glyn Vaughan and his wife Nia with Glyn claiming that the whole day and achievement had yet to truly sink in. Speaking at the end of the sale, he said: “It has been an unbelievable day and one that will live long in the memory. There’s always been something a bit special about Fabio. As a calf he had great shape and width and he has just continued to go on. He’s very docile and has been great to work with. I’m sorry to see him go really but obviously delighted he has made such a price. Considering that it only took 3 minutes from when he arrived in the ring to being knocked down I didn’t have much time to think about it initially and it still hasn’t really sunk in,” he said. Arriving at Carlisle with a little bit of a track record, Dolcorsllwyn Fabio had won the 2011 Overall Best Homebred Bull Award in the North West Midlands & North Wales Limousin Herd Competition.
Almost four years ago to the day, Glyn set the Welsh Limousin record when selling Dolcorsllwyn Brynmor for 32,000gns, and this was another record now consigned to the history books. On both occasions Glyn was accompanied by his wife Nia and he light-heartedly added, “’Nia was also with me four years ago when I broke the Welsh record, so I may take her to more sales. One or two other cattle breeders have asked if they can hire her for a day! You have no real expectation of such a sale price when you are in the position of being Champion at Carlisle. I am very proud to have achieved this UK, European & Welsh record mark in what is such a great breed of cattle, with an already distinguished history, and that continues to go from strength to strength,” he said. The Dolcorsllwyn herd comprises of 60 breeding females and was established 20 years ago.
The judge Gary Swindlehurst commented on Fabio immediately after giving him the Championship and said: “This bull is so well-balanced, has a great top and tremendous width. He is very square and has natural muscling carried right down his leg. He has a sweet, small head, is balanced through the middle and is a very naturally-fleshed bull. Again, he’s a very good example of a modern Limousin bull and a worthy Champion here.”
As well as the world record price, the trade throughout the sale ensured that there were records broken across the board and this depth was picked up by British Limousin Cattle Society (BLCS) Chief Executive Iain Kerr who said: “This has been the best pedigree sale ever seen in the United Kingdom. The world record price is a fantastic achievement and the heartiest congratulations are due to the Vaughans from all at the BLCS. Sitting right alongside that is I think 131 bulls selling to average an incredible £8240, up by over £2000 on the previous UK all-breeds record. These Limousin sales are coming through from the commercial trade for Limousin-bred cattle and producers are willing to pay the money to secure the bulls of their choice. Limousin is all about profitability with a capital P,” he said. “They are calving right, doing right, and the shape is right. They are fitting the market for the producers, butchers, processors and retailers and it is profit that drives the ongoing demand. The breeders must take massive credit for the sustained sales of both pedigree Limousin bulls and females.”