More than 400 cows are entered at this year’s UK Dairy Expo event at Carlisle, making it one of the largest shows of all the seven dairy breeds in the UK.
Judges were flown over from America and Canada, with Hank Van Exel from Lodi, California, and Barclay Phoenix from Ontario, Canada, taking to the ring to pick the days delights.
It was a family affair when Brown Swiss went before Mr Exel who milks 300 Jerseys and 1,400 Holsteins in California, with Robert McColm, Stranraer, taking the overall and reserve breed championship.
Champion cow Soulseat Jublend Beatrice is no stranger to the showing scene having won interbreed champion at Stranraer and breed champion at Dairy Day last year. This third calver is by Jublend and is homebred and will soon be dried off yielding 26l currently.
Taking the reserve ticket was Soulseat Jackpot Dee, a fresh heifer by Super Brown Jackpot and giving 28l. Dee won junior championship at the National Show last year.
Mr Exel described Beatrice as an “awesome cow”. He said: “She had a beautiful mammary system and made it really easy to judge. The reserve was also a good cow and has a lot of potential too.”
Taking the Friesian overall championship was senior cow Lismulligan Priscilla 41, from Adam Lawson, Fyfe. By Deangate Prince 2 and out of Lismulligan Priscilla 35, this sixth calver is classified EX92 and is yielding 38l having calved in February. The champion also won here last year and took champion title at the Dairy Event in 2011 and reserve in 2012.
Mr Lawson also took the reserve championship with a late entry Skyhigh Rocket Polly. This second calver was bought at the Skyhigh dispersal two years ago and was first in her class at Dairy Expo last year. She is giving 25l having calved in September.
In the Dairy Shorthorn classes it was John McLean, Bushmills, Northern Ireland who took the breed champion title with Marleycote Princess Jill 31. She has won for the last two years at Dairy Expo as well as at Balmoral Show. This third calver is yielding 45l and was bred by Richard Baynes, Hexham, who took reserve place with Marleycote Songstress 17, a third calver yielding 42l.
Mr Exel said the champion was a really good cow and was well representative of the breed. “She’s got a gorgeous udder and all the dairyness and quality of the breed. She was an easy winner,” he said.
Red and White
In the Red and White section it was Andrew and Jane Whittaker, Shropshire who took the breed champion title with Knowlesmere Adventure Dream Red, a Riverdane Adventure Red daughter. This second calver has just calved at three years old and at three weeks fresh is giving 45-50l a day. Her daughter won also took the reserve junior champion at Dairy Expo this year.
She took the Red and White reserve place at the same show last year and will be shown on the summer show circuit this year..
Taking the reserve ticket was Robert Veitch with Riverdane MB Strawberry Red, a Duroc Mr Burns daughter.
Judge Mr Phoenix said of his champion: “ She has got real showing style and was an easy decision. The reserve was a little hard over the top and had a little slack in her mammary system.”
In the Jersey ring it was a two- year old heifer that caught the eye of Mr Phoenix when he picked Bluegrass Vindications Harp as the breed champion. James Evans who owns her jointly with his girlfriend Stephanie Whittaker bought Vindications Harp privately from the Bluegrass herd in 2013 as a birthday present for his girlfriend. This two year old heifer is giving 25l having calved in October last year. She also took reserve champion heifer at Agriscot lasy year.
In reserve it was Clifton Tequila Bracken from S and DC Bland, Abbots Lodge, Clifton.
Taking the Ayrshire breed title was Richard Bown of the Richaven herd, Worcester with Loukat Lucky. She calved last March and has done over 13,000l in this lactation and over 59,000l in four lactations. Lucky is no stranger to the show scene having won interbreed at the Livestock Event two years ago. In reserve was Marleycote Brown Nell 20 from GG Baynes and Son, Hexham.
The senior cow class was described by judge Hank Van Exel as one of the best classes on senior animals he has seen in the world in terms of the number of animals in the class and the quality of the cows, with 16 senior ladies to choose from.
Taking the senior champion title was Richard Bown with Richaven Rapture Rebecca, a Richaven Rapture daughter out of Richaven Champion Rebecca. Rebecca has never been beaten in her class and won reserve overall at Agri Scot last year. She calved in October and is giving 47kg.
In reserve was Yasmin Bradbury with Peak Gold Rhapsody, a Braedale Goldwyn daughter. This fourth calver is giving 47kg and was second in mature class at UK Dairy Expo last year. Her sister Peak Goldwyn Rhapsody was grand champion at Dairy Expo last year.
It was another win for Richard Bown in the Holstein ring taking the overall breed and reserve breed titles. The leading lady was Richaven Goldwyn Squaw 6 by Braedale Goldwyn. In Mr Bown’s 25 years of showing, this is the first time he has ever won the double title. Squaw 6 was third at Dairy Expo last year and second at the Livestock Event and is yielding 54kg on twice a day milking having calved on New Year’s Eve.
The reserve Richaven Rapture Rebecca was the senior champion. Mr Bown is milking 60 cows and brought eight cows to show at UK Dairy Expo. Not only did he go home with the Holstein rosettes, but also the Ayrshire breed title.