17 November 2000

Belgian Blue bidding at fever pitch

By Jeremy Hunt

BELGIAN Blue breeders went in to overdrive at Borderway Mart, Carlisle last weekend. Faced with an outstanding selection of females, feverish bidding reached a top price of 7500gns for a seven-month-old heifer.

The Triple Blue sale saw cattle consigned from three herds – Tamhorn, Astbury and Burton – but it was the breathtaking selection from Staffs breeders Jane and Danny Wyllies Tamhorn herd that justifiably produced bidding that verged on frenetic.

It produced an average of £3017 for 15 maiden and yearling heifers and saw two FOT calves level at £5932.

Only founded five years ago, the Tamhorn herd has enjoyed a rapid rise to stardom with a string of top show wins – 58 championships in three seasons – matched by consistently topping main bull sales.

High on the list of the Wyllies breeding priorities have been legs and locomotion. And it was correctness combined with outstanding conformation that inspired.

Top call at 7500gns came for Tamhorn Silver Belle an April-born heifer showing superb shape and style. She is the first daughter of Escale, a cow imported from the Fond du Bois herd, and is by the Opticien son Cristal de Somme. Buyers Fenton Brass, Penrith, and JE Bellas and Son, Appleby, both Cumbria, are founding a new herd.

The same partnership also invested 3000gns in February 1999-bred Tamhorn Rosetta, the first daughter of the imported cow Escorte du Fond de Bois to be sold at auction.

The show-winning white heifer Eclatante 2316 de Miecret has matured since the summer. Undoubtedly destined for even greater things this daughter of Ministre du Bouchelet sold for 6000gns to A W Owen, Anglesey.

The heavily coated blue and white heifer calf Tamhorn Roxy is a star in the making. By Affute Du Ry Ossogne and out of privately purchased Leverhulme Nimbus, on this trade she looked a snip at 4700gns. Buyer was R Templeton, Strathaven, Lanarks.

Tamhorn Sheba also showed tremendous width combined with good legs and fluid movement. This 11-month-old blue and white daughter of General du Cortil Gayot is out of the herds famous cow Tamhorn Oriana. BK Ryder, Moffat, Dumfriesshire, paid 44000gns for her and 3300gns for the January 1999-bred Tamhorn Romance.

Best for Cheshire breeder Jim Barbers Astbury herd was 3100gns given by S Stevenson, Co Antrim, for Astbury Romany, a September 1999-bred daughter of the great show winning bull Alambic. Astbury Oyster, a blue and white heifer in-calf to Alambic, made 3000gns to R Coppinger, Wem, Shropshire.

Fellow Cheshire enthusiast Bruce Wardlaw sold Burton Orchid for 1500gns to Keith Twentyman, Wigton, Cumbria (Harrison and Hetherington). &#42

The Tamhorn herds Belgian Blue white heifer Eclatante 2316 de Miecret sold for 6000gns.