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‘Porterhouse’ simply a cut above the rest!

Despite the difficult driving conditions throughout many parts of the UK and particularly in Shropshire where several inches of snow fell the day before, the show was well attended with several groups making it over from Northern and Southern Ireland and others from as far afield as Denmark. The size of the crowd around the show ring was also boosted by the 2nd Designer Genes Sale which immediately followed the show which was conducted by Halls Auctioneers.

Moralee 1 Porterhouse (pictured right) from T & D Harrison, Stocksfield, Northumberland took the honours at this the 10th Annual Christmas Calf Show organised by the Hereford Cattle Breeders’ Association and held at Shrewsbury Livestock Mart.

This powerfully built, stylish young bull, 14 month old Moralee 1 Porterhouse first took the Grand Male Championship at the ever-popular event under the watchful eye of current Society Chairman Richard Mann, Spinney Herefords. ‘Porterhouse’ is out of Moralee 1 Kimberly and by Danish bred bull SMH King Size 87K. This is just the latest success for Tom & Di Harrison who have enjoyed a fantastic calendar year in both the sale ring and show ring and which justified the long journey down from Northumberland.

Standing Reserve to ‘Porterhouse’ in the Grand Male Championship was Bosa 1 John Hawkins from Herefordshire breeder G Blandford. Shown by experienced stockman Matt Gray, this eight month old bull is out of homebred dam Bosa 1 Margaret 847 and by game-changing stock sire Greenyards 1 Flynn.

Bosa Herefords were also awarded first place with calves sired by ‘Flynn’ in the Best Group of Three Calves by the Same Sire and Owned by the Exhibitor. To complete a successful day for Gerald Blandford, Bosa, were also judged to have the Best Pair of Heifer Calves Owned by the Exhibitor.

In Best Pair of Bull Calves Owned by the Exhibitor it was Derbyshire breeder A & SG Stevenson who took the plaudits with two well matched bull calves.

Other young bulls that came to the fore, in some extremely competitive bull classes, were the 2017 National Calf Show Grand Male Champion, 13 month old Blakesley 1 Major. Owned and exhibited by Leicestershire’s P Cobley, ‘Major’, who is out of multiple show champion Blakesley 1 Icicle and by thrice Royal Ulster Champion the prolific Solpoll 1 Dynamite took the class Bulls born November / December 2016.

Eleven month old Frenchstone P. 1 Hercules took the red rosette much to the joy of Richard Gray from LR & AM Ayre, South Molton in the class bulls born in January or February 2017. The powerfully built ‘Hercules’ is another animal sired by a Danish bull, this time by Moeskaer Magnum 1404 and is out of Frenchstone P. 1 D.Angela.

In the following bull class it was HighHouse Paddy from Worcestershire breeder JR Whitlow who caught the judges eye. Nine month old ‘Paddy’ is out of Border Roulette K32 and by homebred sire HighHouse Merlin.

In the youngest and last bull class of the day it was Romany 1 Prime Time BL P62 from Scottish Borders breeder JRB Wilson & Sons who came out on top. Shown by young Lottie Wilson this seven month bull calf is by Barwise 1 Lancer and is another top animal to come from the well known Ishbel female bloodline.

Taking the Grand Female Championship was the beautifully balanced Normanton 1 Enoki 5th, (pictured right) this followed on from her recent success at Agri-Expo where she took the Supreme Championship. ‘Enoki’ bred and exhibited by TD & WT Livesey, Leicestershire is out of Normanton 1 Enoki J874 and by 2016 Hereford Bull of the Year, the much vaunted Normanton 1 Laertes. Judge Richard Man went on to tap ‘Enoki’ out as his Reserve Supreme Champion much to the delight of ‘Team Normanton’.

Standing as the Reserve Grand Female Champion was Pulham Blossom 20th (pictured below left) from fellow Midlands & East Anglia Hereford Breeders’ Association member PRJ & LR Vincent, Diss, Norfolk. This attractive eleven month old female is all Pulham breeding; out of Pulham Blossom 10th and by Pulham Maverick. It wasn’t just the judge’s eye that she caught, as later in the day she was knocked down to S Taylor & D Marsh, Lancashire for 5,200gns at the Designer Genes Sale.

The spoils were shared amongst some other well known Hereford breeders in the remaining female classes. Breed stalwarts DE, ED & AL Jones, Powys took the class, best heifer born in either November or December 2016, with Dendor 1 Jennefer 19th. Thirteen month old ‘Jennefer’ is out of Dendor 1 Jennefer 12th and by another Danish bull, SMH Euro 30E.

In the March born class it was Blakesley 1 Nancy from J Riley, Northamptonshire who was awarded the red rosette. The Blakesley herd has produced some stunning females over many years and this latest edition is a fitting tribute to the late Mrs P Riley. Nine month old ‘Nancy’ is out of Blakesley 1 Kathleen and by yet another Danish bull, Aland Leopold.

Scottish breeders JRB Wilson & Sons picked another first prize card this time in the male section with eight month old Romany 1 Lucy BL P61. ‘Lucy’ is out of Romany 1 Lucy RE L18 and is sired by Barwise 1 Lancer.

In the final class of the day it was rather fitting that local breeders MJ & HM Timmis, Shropshire took the honours, as no other breeder has done more to support the Christmas Calf Show over the past 10 years. They came out on top with the young animal in the show six month old Shraden 1 Alice P828, who is out of Shraden 1 Alice E283 by the Scottish bred bull Baldinnie 1 Victory.

Throughout the day two age categories of Young Handlers were being judged from the side-lines by newly married couple, Scott and Isabel Coates. In the 16 and under age group it was another battle royal for the Soutter siblings who were representing Normanton Herefords, with Isla this time pipping her brother Finlay into second place.

In the Senior age group of 16-21 years it was Luke New from Fir Farm which took top spot with Iona Smith in Reserve.

Scott and Elizabeth then selected Isla (pictured right) as their Overall Young Handler Champion, which meant that Isla had collected the Young Handler Trophy for the second successive year!