Buyers at the sale of the Stardale herd’s milking portion last week saw the first lot through the ring at 6000gns.

And there was more to come with a top call of 12,000gns, levelling 195 cows and heifers at a remarkable £3022.

Lancashire breeders Robert and Kath Burrow are handing over the reins to son James, and the opportunity to claim some influential Stardale genetics drew a massive crowd to the family farm near Preston.

The 126-strong buyers’ list began with Cheshire breeders John and Valerie Barlow, who gave 12,000gns to add Stardale Jed Roxy to their Painley herd.

This 87-point heifer was due in July to Picston Shottle. She is out of the Ex-95 cow Stardale Leader Roxy who, minutes before, had sold to Cornwall dairy farmers Wills Bros at 8500gns.

She was one of 34 purchases by Wills Bros who continue to strengthen their 1000-cow herd at Wadebridge.

Among other Willsbro herd investments were 10,000gns, paid for Hillbrad Leduc Vanessa 2nd – a grand-daughter of the famous Italian brood cow Aquila Cleitus Vanessa – and 9000gns to secure Stardale Durham Torpedo who is from the renowned Ivory Mark family.

The Stardale herd’s Vaakje family is legendary as one of the most enduring and successful cow families in the Holstein breed.

The sale’s star from this line – which had 100 members in the catalogue – was Stardale Stormatic Vaakje 2nd.

She is due in August with her second to Canyon-Breeze Allen and goes Sussex breeder Mike Carr at 7500gns.

The other highlight from this tremendous family was Stardale Rox Vaakje 13th who was milking with her third.

She realised 7000gns to J R Williamson & Co, Cheshire.

Stardale bulls have had a strong following and this sale gave buyers the chance to sort through a 30-strong power-pack of black-and-white genetics.

The bulls averaged £2200 and reached 5700gns for the three-month-old calf Stardale Golddust.

This ET-bred calf is by Braedale Goldwyn and out of the 80t brood cow Stardale Starbuck Stella Ex-96-7.

Averages: 195 cows and heifers £3022, eight served heifers £2821 and 11 bulls £2911.

(Norton and Brooksbank with David Jones)

jh@jeremyhuntassociates.com