In the 175th celebration of the Royal Adelaide Show Society, Poll Dorsets celebrated their 60th year since foundation with a magnificent display on the Saturday at this year’s Adelaide Royal.
Nineteen exhibitors from four states displayed 235 Poll Dorset sheep and 273 entries including group classes, with top quality to the end of every line-up. Highly respected New Zealand judge Neville Greenwood, Adelong stud, Canterbury had the honour of adjudicating this Adelaide record Poll Dorset showing. It was the first time he has judged at the Royal Adelaide show, but he has judged at the Melbourne and Perth Royal shows previously.
While all exhibitors had reason to be proud of the quality and presentation of their sheep, it proved to be a triumph for two studs in particular, the Allendale stud from Bordertown, and the Ulandi Park stud from Marrabel.
The Allendale stud of Alastair and Jayne Day and family came through to win both the senior and junior champion ram awards, with their senior champion, Allendale 224/13 getting the nod as grand champion ram.
This Allendale grand champion was a May-2013 drop and it was the first time the ram had been shown. The ram’s bloodlines stem from Wyndamah 146/09 and Leenala 118/08, the main sires the Allendale stud has been using over the last few years. The ram weighed 140.5 kilograms with 8.5millimetre fat score and 50mm eye muscle depth.
“I’ve already used him as a lamb and I’ll be keeping him for the stud,” Alastair Day said.
Judge, Neville Greenwood said the outstanding quality on display made it hard to choose a winner, especially when judging the senior champion ram.
“I’d like to congratulate the exhibitors on bringing rams as good as this. It makes it really hard to make a decision,” he said.
He said the senior champion ram, which went on to win supreme exhibit, could not be overlooked.
“The reason that I had to put the champion on top is that he’s very difficult to fault. He’s as clean as clean on top and has a heap of meat on him. He also has very good bone and a beautiful Dorset colour.”
But Mr Greenwood said the ram shown by Clayton and Andrea Rowett, Ulandi Park, Marrabel that took out reserve senior champion ram was not far behind the supreme for quality.
The ram, which came from the pair of rams under 1.5 years shorn class, weighed a whopping 157kg with a 10mm fat depth and 49mm eye muscle depth.
Allendale’s junior champion ram which came from the pair of rams under 1.5 years shorn class and born on or after July 1, weighed 119kg with 8.5mm fat depth and 45mm eye muscle depth.
After being narrowly pipped for the senior ram award, the Ulandi Park stud of Clayton and Andrea Rowett and family later took out the champion ewe award; plus their accumulated awards throughout the day, which included wins in the sire’s progeny pair, the breeder’s group and the sire’s progeny group saw them named as the most successful exhibitors. Their champion was an April 2013 drop ewe and weighed 106.5kg with 12mm fat depth and 47mm eye muscle depth.
“The champion ewe is exceptional. If you’re talking about setting a standard of excellence for the breed, she’s not far off. She’s magnificent,” Mr Greenwood said.
The Ulandi Park team was dominated by progeny of Kurralea 11/11, the $28,000 Australian record priced Poll Dorset ram the Rowett family bought in 2012 in partnership with the Hausler family, Janmac stud, Goroke, Victoria. From the quality displayed, this investment is proving to be a good one.
While the Allendale and Ulandi Park studs received the biggest gongs, Alan and Lyn Schinckel, Leenala stud, Naracoorte were knocking on the door all day, with their winner from the ram under 1.5 years shorn and born on or after August 1 class going through to be reserve junior champion.
Fittingly in the 60th year celebrations, it was flock number 1, the Close family’s Newbold stud, Gawler River that had the other broad ribbon success with the reserve champion ewe award.
Mr Greenwood was effusive in his praise for the reserve ewe.
“She’s beautiful up front; she’s got a beautiful ‘breedy’ head, she’s sound on her legs and has a beautiful top on her. Also she is carrying no waste on her at all,” he said.
The Kurralea stud, Ariah Park, NSW; the Konongwootong stud, Casterton, Victoria and the Glen Devon stud, Two Wells, SA were other class winners on the day, with all competing studs knocking on the door of the winners circle all day.
Poll Dorset awards:
Judge: Neville Greenwood, Adelong, Canterbury, NZ
Exhibitors: 15 – Entries: 273
Senior Champion Ram: Alastair Day, Allendale, Bordertown
Reserve Senior Champion Ram: Clayton and Andrea Rowett, Ulandi Park, Marrabel
Junior Champion Ram: Allendale
Reserve: Alan and Lyn Schinckel, Leenala, Naracoorte
Grand Champion Ram: Alastair Day, Allendale (Senior Champion)
Champion Ewe: Ulandi Park
Reserve: Bill Close, Newbold, Gawler River
Supreme Champion Poll Dorset Exhibit: Allendale
Most successful exhibitor: Ulandi Park