Steve Richardson’s Stonebridge flock was responsible for the 3400gns top price performer at the 37thNorthern Area Texel Sheep Breeders’ annual two-day show and sale of pedigree rams and females staged at Skipton Auction Mart.
Top of the flocks on price was Mr Richardson’s fourth prize April 2017-born, shearling ram, Stonebridge Albie, also third in class at this year’s Great Yorkshire Show. By the Knap Wot A Nut son, Procters Ya Belter, out of a dam sired by Oldfield Upperclass, the leading price performer found a new home in Wharfedale with Otley’s D H Ryder.
Mr Richardson, who runs his pedigree flock, established in 1994, at Mount Pleasant Farm, Great Houghton, near Barnsley, followed up with a 1900gns sale, this for Stonebridge Angus, a February, 2017, son of Pant Wolf, out of a Knap Viscous Sid daughter, claimed by Lancashire breeders, the Cochran family, Darwen.
To complete a good day, Mr Richardson was also responsible for the first prize winner in the recorded shearling ram show class with another February-born entry.
His Stonebridge Arthur, fifth in class at this year’s Great Yorkshire and by the home-bred Stonebridge Yogi – a full brother to last year’s supreme – out of a Cambwell Vasilav-sired dam, sold for 1200gns to Denton Park Estates, Ilkley.
Second top price on a day which saw 37 sheep trade at four figures was a 2200gns bid for the penultimate sheep to enter the sale ring late in the day, the first prize ram lamb, reserve male and overall reserve supreme champion from Red Rose breeder James Robinson’s Kaker Mill flock in Carnforth, Lancaster.
His February-born Kaker Mill Bailey, by Tamnamoney Ultimate, himself a son of the 20,000gns Knap You’re The Man, out of a Sportsmans Tremendous 11 daughter, was another entry to find pastures new in Wharfedale when snapped up by the Keighley family, who run the Manderlea flock in Leathley. Mark Keighley said it was well worth the wait and that he had high hopes for his new acquisition.
In turn, Mr Robinson reckoned it was the best commercial lamb he had ever bred and he has retained two full sisters to the Skipton reserve supreme in his flock, established in 2007. He is no stranger to success at the mart, also presenting the top price 2220gns shearling ewe at the annual winter Texel females highlight two years ago and averaging more than 900gns with 17 sheep entered.
Richard Wilson’s Crimple Head flock, Beckwithshaw, Harrogate, was again to the fore when achieving 2100gns with his March, 2017, shearling ram, Crimple Head Apache.
Sired by the Langside Thunderbird son, the Hellifield-bred Hull House Winner, out of a Hull House Rothchild ewe purchased at Skipton for 1900gns two years ago, Apache became a second Denton Park Esates acquisition, with the same purchasers themselves going to 1900gns to claim another shearling ram from the same home, Crimple Head Adonis, by Parkholme Van Dyke, out of a Langside Thunderbird ewe.
Also catching the eye at 2000gns was the fifth prize shearling ram from Angela Nairey’s Meinspride flock, Liusey, Blackburn. Her fully homebred March, 2017, Meinspride Abraham, by Meinspride Warrior, out of a Meinspride Viking dam, joined J Robinson, Grantley, Ripon.
Back in the championship classes, Peter Woof, who runs the Stainton Texel flock at Storth End Farm, near Kendal, stepped up on his reserve supreme championship success last year to be crowned supreme champion at the 2018 renewal.
He took top billing with another well-bred ram lamb from his multi award-winning Cumbrian flock. The February-born Stainton Bart first won the recorded ram lamb show class, before progressing to become male champion, then overall title winner.
He is an embryo and first crop son of Eden Valley A1, by Clinterty Yogi Bear, out of a first-rate breeding ewe by the renowned Sportsmans Tremendous 11. Mr Woof’s latest top performer sold for 1600gns to A and C Watson, Whitehaven.
Northumberland show judge Ian Murray said his chosen champion had a great top and carcass, good skin and showed himself well, also noting that the top end in general exhibited good skins and carcases.
Mr Woof also stepped up with the second prize ram lamb, Stainton Bartek, a February-born embryo son of the Eden Valley Whiz Kid-bred Gyrhos Andy, out a dam by the 32,000gns Hexel Wildcard, acquired in 2015 by a six-strong syndicate which includes the Skipton supreme champion. The class runner up sold for 800gns.
The shearling ram show class fell to the Violet Hill flock of North Yorkshire’s Tom Pateman, who farms at Hungate Farm, Brompton by Sawdon, Scarborough, with his March, 2017, Goldies Action Man, acquired as a lamb last year from Scottish breeder, Bruce Goldie
Having already won tickets in the show arena at both Lincoln and Driffield, before becoming breed champion at Thornton-le-Dale, the ram, by the Northern Irish-bred Ballynahone Yorkie, out of a Knock Utara daughter, sold for 1700gnsto Skipton regular Simon Bennett, Silsden Moor.
Turning to the ladies, the female championship fell to 2016 reserve supreme champions, mother and daughter, Freda Booth and Helen Keighley, who run the Wigglesworth flock at Settle, with their first prize March 2017-born shearling ewe by another Knap Wot A Nut son, Procters Youre Mine.
Out of a dam sired by Strathbogie Top Gun, the leading lady also became the top-priced female when selling locally for 1200gns to Nathan and Becky Dakin, of Hellifield.
The second prize shearling ewe from Jill Perrings’ Pergill flock in Giggleswick, tapped out as reserve female champion, also had Procters Farm breeding, being by the Glenside Whiskey Galore son, Procters Yeehaa, acquired in 2015 and a second prize winner at the Great Yorkshire a year later. Out of a Tamnamoney Ubank-sired dam, the February, 2017, shearling sold for 600gns to a breeder from Norfolk, H Sillis, Edgefield.
Picking up the winner’s rosette in the ewe lamb show class were Jack Davies and Carol Wareing, long-time partners in both farming and life, who run the Holly Farm flock at Halsall, near Ormskirk. Their February-born lamb is among the first crop of daughters by the Procters Vagabond-bred Anna Appollo, acquired last year from Keith Jameson in Dumfries. Out of a dam by Tophill Reality, the class winner sold for 250gns to Richard Hobday, Alstonfield in the Peak District National Park.
Averages; Shearling Ewes £368.38, Ewe Lambs £241.50, Shearling Rams £757.36, Ram Lambs £402.34 (Craven Cattle Marts).