2017-05-24  facebooktwitterrss

British Blues Balmoral Toppers

British Blue cattle breeders enjoyed an outstanding 2017 Balmoral Show as dairy and suckler herd owners packed the ringside to watch Cumbrian judge Stephen Pattinson in action.

Once again Newtownards breeder James Martin and son Sam had an outstanding Royal Ulster (Balmoral) Show even though all their entries were making a first time appearance in a show ring!

James Martin, left, of Newtownards and judge Stephen Pattinson with the British Blue Supreme Champion and Reserve both from the Springhill Herd founded in 1987. Springhill King Kong, left, the Supreme and Male Champion is a son of Springhill Ever Ready. The Reserve Champion and Female Champion Springhill Karla is a Kubitus de Bray daughter.

James Martin, left, of Newtownards and judge Stephen Pattinson with the British Blue Supreme Champion and Reserve both from the Springhill Herd founded in 1987. Springhill King Kong, left, the Supreme and Male Champion is a son of Springhill Ever Ready. The Reserve Champion and Female Champion Springhill Karla is a Kubitus de Bray daughter.
MacGregor Photography.

Springhill King Kong, a son of the home-bred bull, Springhill Ever Ready, took both the male and supreme championships. The female and Reserve Supreme Championship going home up the same farm lane as Springhill Karla, sired by Kubitus de Bray, triumphed against impressive female competition.

Then came the icing on the cake for Blue breeders at Balmoral as the interbreed pairs heifer championship was won by James and Sam Martin with Springhill Karla and Springhill Kerrie The champion and reserve in the British Blues senior heifer class. Taking this interbreed trophy is another first for the nation’s premium beef breed.

Last year the Martin family made Balmoral history when they were the first British Blue breeders to take the RUAS Inter Breed Championship won by Springhill Golden Girl with Springhill Leo at foot.

A week after Balmoral 2017 leading British Blue breeders headed for their Society show and sale in the Borderway Mart, Carlisle. An event attracting stock from all four home nations with entries coming from as far west as Omagh, as far north as Aberdeenshire and from down in distant Kent and Devon.

Trade was on fire as 64 bulls sold to average 5700gns with a top of 24,000gns paid to Messrs Williams of Wales for a truly exceptional black and white bull by Tweeddale Hebony. Several entries made 10,000gns and enthusiastic Ulster breeders Mel and Diane Lucas from Antrim topped 7000gns twice! Father and son James and Sam Martin, fresh from Balmoral success, selling two animals at 4000gns a piece.

Commenting at the British Blue Cattle Society AGM, also held in Carlisle during the sale weekend, Chairman Graham Bindley was upbeat.
“The British Blue is bred to provide an efficient carcass leaving the minimum waste and the maximum profit. No wonder British Blue carcasses are in demand both by local butchers and supermarkets.

“Thus the ultimate terminal beef sire, the British Blue, is the key to producing more and better beef using calves from dairy and suckler herds alike.

“No wonder the Blue crossbred calf, store and finished animal tops mart reports nationwide, week in, week out. Our message is simple; the Blue brings you a bonus with every calf.”

Rodney Magowan

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