Caithness Show always attracts a cracking line-up of livestock and this year was no exception – despite some horrendous wind and rain the previous day.
With the event – staged in Thurso this year – celebrating its 175th show, there were also new attractions to commemorate the big day. All competitions were judged by some of the industry’s leading ladies.
They were all on form too, with the overall champion of champions being the commercial cattle leader from Mark and Debbie Munro, which was following in the footsteps of its Latheron supreme overall win the previous week.
Similarly, the reserve overall was the inter-breed sheep winner, a Texel ewe from Charles and Isobel Angus, which scooped the same award at Latheron.
“The cattle champion just caught my eye as soon as she came into the ring,” said the overall champion of champions judge, Mrs Lorna Gunn, of Thurso.
Taking all the plaudits was the home-bred 10-month-old British Blue heifer, Kiss My …, from Mark and Debbie Munro’s well-known show calf breeding suckler herd based at Invercharron, Ardgay. Bred from the AI sire Tweeddale Guinness, she is out of a home-bred Limousin cross cow and is bound for the Thainstone Spectacular Show and Sale.
The reserve overall, the Texel first selected by breed judge Carol-Anne Warnock, from Sandilands, and later tapped out by inter-breed judge Linda McKendrick, from Cupar, was also repeating her big win from Latheron. This home-bred three-crop ewe from Charles and Isobel Angus, shown by shepherd Gary MacKay, is by Glenside Ring A Ding son Oldfield Telstar. Bred from a home-bred ewe from the 120-strong Oldfield Texel flock, she produced a best-ever result for the team.
Following the Texel in the sheep lines to take the runner-up trophy was the supreme North Country Cheviot, a tup lamb shown by Jonnie Campbell, of DN Campbell and Sons, Bardnaclavan, Westfield. Their March-born son of Cairnside Royal Mail, out of a home-bred ewe, stood first in class at the Highland.
The usual strong sheep section saw another big win for the commercial champions from William Barnetson and sons, James and William, of Lynegar, Watten. This year they not only won their section but also the inter-breed group honours with a home-bred one-crop Texel cross half-bred ewe paraded with March-born Suffolk cross ewe lambs. These are by home-bred sires and were on their first outing.
Leading the pure groups was a trio of park-type Cheviots from John Polson, from Smerlie. This comprised a home-bred shearling and gimmer, both of which were sired by Durran Rover, and a ewe lamb by a Biggins ram.
Supreme horse was Team Skelton’s show winning ridden hunter, Chadwicks Nebu, from Morven View, Spittal. Owned by Russell Skelton and ridden by James Munro, this big grey has won top show awards around the country and was bred by Sharon Chadwick Watts, from East Yorkshire. He is by Concorde and out of the Irish draught mare Bucktongate Penny, by O’Sullivan.
Aberdeen-Angus: Champion – B and J Mackay, of Skitten, Wick, with Balmachie Roderick, a thee-year-old bull sired by Balmachie Benvorlick.
Beef Shorthorn: J Campbell and Co, of Todholes, Thurso, with Ballylinney Daisy, a 17-month-old daughter of Podehole Edward. Reserve – J Campbell and Co with the 2016 and 2015 champion Todholes Rose Jenny, a six-year-old cow by a different Podholes sire.
Highland: S Gillon, of Lower Toftingall, Watten, with Robina of Aviedale. By Angus of Lyntoun, out of Myra 9 of Lagg. Reserve – I Gunn, of Cairwald House, Swiney, with the five-year-old cow, Primrose 10 of Knockendon, by James Beusach of An-Sidhean. She is out of a previous Knockendon cow.
Charolais: Champion and reserve inter-breed beef – W and A Oag, of Brims Mains, Forss, with home-bred Charolais Shebster Lucy, a 14-month-old heifer by the AI sire, Alwent Goldbar. She is out of a home-bred cow by Burradan Talisman. Reserve – J Morris, of Olrig Mains, Thurso, with Olrig Jadore, by Dingle Hofmeister and bred from the former Highland Show champion, Olrig Dubarry.
Simmental: Champion and reserve – J Sinclair Gunn, of Clairdon, Mabsey, Lybster. Champion was Omorga Five Star by Kilbride Delboy. Reserve – Mavsey Graceful, a home-bred yearling heifer by Keldrum Clio, out of Mavsey Dancer.
Continental: Champion and reserve – JJK Manson, of Upper Northfield, Wick, with British Blues. Supreme was Graymar Halle, a massive three-year-old in-calf female by Empire D’Ochain, out of Graymar Electra. Reserve – Caithness Krystal, a Drift Domino-sired nine-month-old heifer out of Caithness Caledonie.
Commercial cattle: Champion, supreme cattle and overall champion of champions – J Munro and Son, of Invercharron, Ardgay, with the supreme overall from Latheron, Kiss My … a September-2015-born home-bred heifer got by the AI British Blue sire, Tweeddale Guiness, out of a home-bred Limousin cross cow. Reserve – Dunbeath Farms, Dunbeath, Caithness, with a February-born Limousin cross stot by Haltcliffe Headman.
Clydesdale: J Taylor, of South Ronaldsay, with the home-bred yearling filly Aikers Lady Charolotte, by CW Carver and out of Aikers Lady Di. Reserve – J Munro, of Achscrabster Farm Cottages, Westfield, with the two-year-old filly, West Glen Apple Blossom. By Collessie Stepping Stone, out of West Glen New Dawn.
Highland: A McLennan, of Garth, Orkney, with the ridden seven-year-old stallion, Donald of Muck, by Strathmasty Seamus Mhor, out of Kaimes of Crowila. Reserve – N MacDonald, of Bridge Street, Halkirk, with the three-year-old gelding, Braehillor King Duncan.
Shetland: C Cameron, of Ardmhor, Munlochy, with Stow Rosie, a six-year-old yeld mare, by Warrickston Bob out of Lairg Hollygirl. Reserve – F McCarthy, of Seafield View, Mey, with the two-year-old miniature filly Beinra Springtime Minuet, by Stow Buzz out of Hawksground Lamorna.
Border Leicester: A Miller and Sons, of Aimster, Thurso, with a home-bred tup lamb and reserve with a ewe lamb.
Suffolk: D Manson and Sons, of Skaill, Thurso, with a home-bred two-shear ram by Middlemuir McCoist out of a ewe by Lakeview Loyalist. Reserve – B Swanson, of East Murkle, Thurso, with a January-born ewe lamb by Widdrington Major, out of a home-bred ewe.
Half-bred – B Swanson, of East Murkle, Thurso, with a home-bred gimmer by a Drennans sire bought at Lanark, out of a home-bred ewe. Reserve – Messrs D Miller, of Buckies, Thurso, with a March-born ewe lamb by an Aimster sire.
Prime lambs – J Campbell and Co, with a pen of two April-born ewe lambs by the Beltex sire, Bardnaheigh Trogan. Reserve – C Angus, of Oldfield, Thurso, with a pair of March-born Texel cross ewe lambs by a home-bred sire.
North Country Cheviot – – DN Campbell and Sons, of Bardnaclavan, Westfield, with a March-born tup lamb by Cairnside Royal Mail. He is out of a home-bred ewe by Cairnside Northern Light. Reserve and crofters champion – W Campbell, of Ormlie Road, Thurso, with a ewe lamb by Bardnaclavan’s stock ram, Sebay Superstar, out of a home-bred ewe by a Roadside ram. Group champion – C Angus, of Oldfield, Thurso, with three home-bred gimmers. Reserve – C Angus with three tup lambs.
Hill Cheviot – Badanloch Estate, Kinbrace, Sutherland, with three-shear ram, Hethpool Rivet. By Attonburn Grandslam. Reserve – J Mackenzie, of Langdale, Strathnaver, with a gimmer by a home-bred son of Stouphill Laddie.
Blackface: D, A and K Douglas, of Achnamoine, Watten, with a three-crop ewe. Reserve – J Campbell and Co with a home-bred four-crop ewe by a home-bred sire but out of a Bardnaheigh-bred ewe.
Native: Chloe Stewart (16), of An-Cala, Gills, with a January-born Dorset ewe lamb out of a home-bred ewe. Reserve – J Mackenzie, of Langdale, Strathnaver with a South Country Cheviot two-shear ram. A son of Stirkfield Tam’s The Man.
Lleyn: Champion and reserve – J Campbell and Co, Supreme was Fort Casanova, a three-shear ram. He was the sire of the first and second prize ewe lambs. Reserve – Todholes’ April-born tup lamb by the champion and out of a home-bred ewe by Inchture Nae Limits.
Commercial sheep: W Barnetson and Sons, of Lynegar, Watten, with a Texel cross Half-bred one-crop ewe out of a home-bred Half-bred ewe. Reserve – Messrs Sutherland, of Sibmister and Stainland Farms, Thurso, with a home-bred Texel cross ewe by a home-bred sire.
Cross sheep: W Barnetson and Sons, of Lynegar, with a home-bred three-quarter-bred Texel cross Half-bred gimmer, by Sibmister Ultimatum. Reserve – Messrs Sutherland, with a bought-in Suffolk cross Half-bred two-crop ewe.
MV Accredited Texel: Champion and supreme sheep – C Angus with a home-bred three-crop ewe. She is by Oldfield Telstar, a Glenside Ring a Ding son retained for breeding, out of a home-bred ewe. Reserve – J Forbes, of Boultach, Latheron, with a tup lamb by Cairncam Wilderbeast. He is out of a Cambwell-bred ewe by Cowal Powerhouse.
Non MV accredited Texel: K Gunn, of Shop Farm, Scotscalder, with a ewe lamb by a Trideug son of Trideug Top Notch, out of a home-bred ewe by Garngour Playboy. Reserve – K Gunn with a tup lamb by the same sire but out of a ewe by Baltier Thunderbird.
Continental sheep: Y Spence, of Gowan Brae, Skye of Curr, with Benmore Pippa, a home-bred Charollais gimmer. She is by a Parkgate sire, out of a home-bred ewe. Reserve – A Sutherland, of Bardnaheigh, Harpsdale, with a Millennium Bleu tup lamb by a Tighnahinch-bred Bleu Do Maine and out of a home-bred Beltex gimmer.
Young handlers: Ages 12-16 – 1 and champion, Alastair McCarthy, Longue; 2, Millie MacKenzie, Tillymorgan; 3, Chloe Stewart, An Cala, Gills. Ages 6-11 – 1 and reserve, Dylan Alexander, Nipster; 2, Leo Mackintosh, Gowan Brae; 3, Alexander Douglas, Achnamoin. Fives and under – 1, Sophie Sutherland, Oxford.
Fleece – DA and K Douglas, of Achnmoine, Watten, with a fine fleece. Reserve – DA and K Douglas, with a medium fleece.