Northern herds shine on show and sale circuit
By Jeremy Hunt
TOP honours and the highest price tags are usually reserved for bulls from southern breeders at the South Devon Herd Book Societys sales, but last weeks spring gathering at Exeter saw cattle from northern herds storm to victory.
The raider who broke tradition in both the show and sale ring achieved the top price of 3600gns and the supreme championship.
The 800-mile round trip from Northumberland to Devon is a long haul with one bull in the trailer but it proved worthwhile for Alnwick breeder Robert Lee. His May 1997-bred Lumbylaw Duke 14th stood reserve overall champion and made the days highest price.
Duke 14th is by the Winsor Saffrons Trump son Lumbylaw Baron who took the best stock bull title in the breed societys 1997 herd competition. Mr Lee runs a herd of 100 cows and has been breeding South Devons for 25 years.
Weighing 926kg on the day and with a Beef Value of 23, Duke 14th went back north with buyers J B Webster (Farms) to join their Halsall herd at Ormskirk, Lancs.
And Mr Lee re-invested the major part of his takings when he made the days second highest bid of 2600gns for one of leading breeder Peter Rowes four bulls from his Trewint herd at Liskeard, Cornwall.
Trewint Jubilee Junior 7th won his class and is by the show-winning bull Trewint Jubilee 5th. He had an EBV of 36, the highest in the sale.
Even more of the spoils were carried off by northern breeders when, despite an action packed journey from Dumfries, David Irving took the supreme title with Enterprise Dakota Dude.
Mr King suffered two punctures and was bitten by a dog during his journey to Exeter but judge Mr L T Rounsevell, Loswithiel, Cornwall considered his son of Grove Charlemange 5th to be worthy of the top placing.
Dude, which stood reserve breed champion at last years Great Yorkshire Show, realised 1450gns to Messrs Kersoe Farms, Pershore, Worcs.
"Outwintered and never pampered," was how Ivybridge, Devon breeders John and Sue Irish described their bull Edmeston Centurion 24th. This is the last son of the Irishs famous sire Stretchford Centurion and he made 1750gns to L J Light, Liskeard.
The days heaviest bull at 996kg goes to work on cattle grazing the edge of Dartmoor owned by Messrs Collacombe Farms, Tavistock. They paid 1400gns for Grove Cornelius 36th, a son of Asdig Concorde 5th bred by Douglas Scott and from the top producing Coltsfoot family in his herd at Moreton-in-Marsh, Glos.
Averages: 13 bulls £1579. (Norton and Brooksbank) *