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New Simmental record at 45,000gns

WEEK TWO of the Stirling Bull Sales opened with a bang, when the Simmental breed produced a new breed record of 45,000gns – more than double the previous best of 22,000gns paid on three separate occasions.

Bel Dhu Capercaillie 11, from the MacPherson family, more than doubled the previous breed record when he realised 45,000gns
Bel Dhu Capercaillie 11, from the MacPherson family, more than doubled the previous breed record when he realised 45,000gns

With a further nine bulls hitting the magical five-figure price tag and another eight cashing in between 8000gns and 10,000gns, the breed also secured its second highest average with two more bulls sold on last year's record breaking sale which saw 119 level at £6236.

The icing on the cake this year however was undoubtedly the 45,000gns record priced bull, Bel Dhu Capercaillie 11, from the MacPherson family, from Blackford, Croy, which was selected senior champion and supreme overall by the judge and breed president, Iain Green, Corskie, Fochabers, who later backed his decision and bought the bull in partnership with Dean and Andrew Anderson, Smallburn Farms, Elgin. Living up to this name was the 20-month-old bull, Bel Dhu Capercaillie 11, bred by Anne MacPherson, who sold the bull back into the MacPerson family's renowned Simmental business – parents, Billy and Judy, older sister Fiona, and herself – last October. Backed by champion winners on both sides of the equation, he is a grand-son of the top breeding sire, Blackford Harvester being the first son sold off the 16,000gns Hockenhull Waterloo. The dam is Blackford Wagtail, a heifer by the 10,000gns champion, Kilbride Farm Strabane, and one of 15 pedigree Simmentals at Blackford which run alongside 10 Charolais.

The runner-up senior from the well-known Stronach family – father Stewart, son Stewart and his young family of Michael and Lauren – from Keith, followed the senior champion to take the reserve overall and the second top equal price of 12,000gns. Tops for this 100-cow pedigree herd this year was Islavale Chip 11, yet another son of the top breeding stockbull, Glenturk Premier, this time out of the Kilbride Farm Newry daughter, Islavale Wonder. The buyer was Paul Fovargue, buying for his 40-cow Edroda herd established four years ago at Bottom Farm, Coleorton, Coalville, Leicester.

There was more quality breeding behind the second 12,000gns bull in the shape of Keeldrum Capone 11 from Lawrie and Symington auctioneer, David Lowry, who runs 75 cows in his Keeldrum herd at Newsteadings, Cartland, Lanark. His bull, is the third son sold by the Irish-bred bull, Hillcrest Valentine, with the first two making 7000gns and 4000gns and out of the Caldwell Potentate daughter Keeldrum Fancy. Capone goes back to Camus Solitaire, which is one of the most famous cows in the breed, and was knocked down to Rose Goulding of the National Cattle Breeding Centre, Enfield, Southern Ireland.

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