By Rosie Breakwell • Published on 5th June, 2023
Competition was strong as beef cattle kick-started the interbreed championships at the Royal Bath & West Show on Thursday (1 June).
Under the respected and sharp eye of judge Mary Cormack, the penultimate Native and Continental Interbreed Championships took place before she tapped out her Interbreed Supreme Champion.
Scooping Breed Champion and Best Native, British Limousin – two-year-old in-calf heifer, Dinmore Solovely – went on to take Supreme Champion as well, with Ms Cormack commenting on her presence in the ring.
“She was very good on parade and an excellent example of the breed; well balanced with a nice natural width across the shoulder and down the back, to a well-rounded tail.”
Purchased at 11 months old from Paul Dawes’ Dinmore herd in Hereford, the heifer now resides with Adam Smith and his parents – Tony and Jo – near Bude, Cornwall. They also took Breed Champion with their three-year-old Beef Shorthorn cow, Oceanview Perfection, for the second consecutive year.
Dinmore Solovely is sired by the Smith’s stock bull – Dinmore Orly – from purchased semen – and is out of the impressive dam, Dinmore Mylovely. “Her mother’s bloodline can be traced back to a well-respected Irish family and their 36,000gn cow, Carmorn Voney,” said Mr Smith.
And the heifer’s lineage shines through with her success. “Last year she took reserve Intermediate Champion at the National Limousin Show and we were thrilled. But this is our first Interbreed Supreme Champion at a major show,” enthused Mr Smith.
“We’re delighted and it makes all the hard work worthwhile.”
The heifer will be at the Royal Cornwall Show before taking the summer off in preparation for her first calving.
Competition was strong, with Reserve Champion going to the Bowendu herd’s three-year-old Hereford bull, Solpoll 1 Trailblazer. “He’s a super young bull with exceptional quality,” said Ms Cormack. “He has clean legs and good movement with a great showman.”
The accolade was not lost on Adam Bowen, who started his Bowendu herd at Tydu Farm in South Wales in 2016 with an in-calf heifer and a cow and calf at foot from Dendor Herefords. Today his pedigree herd is 30-head strong.
“I’m just over the moon with his success today,” he said. “It’s his first show this season and he’s taken Male and Breed Champion – and yes we would have liked Supreme Champion, but we’ll save that for another day.”
Out of Solitude 1 Duchess P946 and sired by Solpoll 1 Promotor, Trailblazer was purchased by the Bowen family at 14 months old. Now due his third crop of progeny, his homebred daughter Bowendu 1 Ruby 2nd, born in January 2022, is showing promise and had her own Royal Bath & West success, taking Female Breed Champion.
Friday (2 June) was the big day for the interbreed championships across the other three livestock sections – dairy, sheep and pigs.
First up was the dairy individual interbreed championship. Judge Linda Batty said this year’s final was a tough call with one of the finest fields of cows on display that she had judged for a long time.
After much deliberation the coveted Supreme Champion title went to Les and Tracy Rockett’s eight-year-old Ayrshire, Greenaway Ross Great Jubilee, sired by Easterchurch Ross and bred by the exhibitors.
Now in her fifth lactation and yielding 35kg, Greenaway Ross’s win came as something of a surprise for the Rockett family.
“She’s a fantastic cow and one of our favourites – but we only brought her along for the ride really,” said Les and Tracy’s daughter, Abi.
“In fact, she’s one of the ‘grandmas’ of the herd and we’re absolutely delighted that she had it in her to win against some very stiff competition.”
Now as the proud owner of the Bath & West’s Supreme Championship sash, Greenaway Ross will be doing a tour of county one-day shows this season instead of grazing at the Rockett family’s Ebsworthy Moor Farm, near Okehampton in Devon.
It was a very successful show for the Rockett family, who were also the runners-up in the interbreed pairs award and took a string of class wins.
Reserve champion was awarded to Berryholme Lighthouse Flo, a Holstein from Kevin and Sian Rickard’s Starlet herd, from Newport in South Wales. Judge, Linda Batty said Berryholme was a fine cow which could well be worthy of first-place awards in future years.
In the sheep lines, a huge entry of over 1,700 gave the judges a difficult task to select the outstanding entries. Picking the Interbreed Champion, judge Henry Doveman said the standard of entries was remarkably high, before announcing the winner: Robert Hole’s Dorset Horn and Poll Dorset shearling ewe, Eucalyptus.
“She’s a typical example of our flock, lovely looks, and stands very firm – and she just looked like a winner on the day,” said Mr Hole, of Hillstreet Farm, Sherborne in Dorset.
“We’ve been showing our Dorset Horn and Poll Dorsets here for over 40 years and to win the Interbreed Championship is a life-long dream come true.” Robert and his daughter, Sophie, are pictured with Eucalyptus in the Grand Parade.
Reserve spot was given to 13-year-old Harry Stamp’s Dorset Down ram lamb, from the Bowbridge Flock from Highbridge in Somerset.
In the pig section, the Interbreed Supreme Champion was awarded to Duroc boar, Hazeway Clyde.
The 10-month-old boar, sired by Deerpark Clyde, was bred by the exhibitor, Hayley Loveless from Bridport in Dorset.
It was the boar’s first outing in the show ring, and the win delighted Hayley.
“You never know what will happen when you put a pig into the ring for the first time – so winning the championship is fantastic for us,” she said.
Deerpark Clyde will be trying his luck in the ring through the summer, including at the Royal Cornwall and Great Yorkshire Shows.
Judge Paul Churchyard placed a Large Black, Sock Doreen 254, as Reserve winner, after careful consideration of what he described as ‘a very high quality and impressive entry’. The 10-month-old gilt was sired by Addison Malcolm 5, from Sock Doreen 236 and bred by the exhibitor, Martin Snell of Yeovil.