Led by farm manager Mark Logan, they produced the show's top animal in front of Canadian judge, Patrice Simard, from Quebec, who performed in front of a large crowd obviously intent on seeing how the RUAS could revitalise their major winter event without the aid of the soon-to-be-let Kings Hall, which has been its home since its inception 27 years ago.
Taking the top honours was the second calver, Clandeboye CR Evita, a daughter of Clandeboye Rocket and out of Clandeboye Jazz Evita, herself a former Winter Fair champion. Back home, she's part of a 25-cow Jersey herd which matches up with a 65-cow Holstein herd. Two months calved, this cow is already looking set to improve on her 4100kg first lactation, which had high BF and protein levels of 5.68% and 4.16%, respectively.
The Holstein champion filled the runner-up spot in the inter-breed, just managing to split the Jersey winner and reserve. This was Sam McCormick's Hilltara Zenith Echo, an Ex 92-rated daughter of Ocean-View Zenith which goes back to an American family brought into the herd many years ago, with her dam, Hilltara Champion Echo, also being a successful show cow. Calved way back in May, this third calver is following on from a second yield of 11,600 litres at 4.49% BF and 3.43% P. She has also recorded some show success in the past for the Bangor-based herd, having won the Causeway Classic as a heifer in milk.
See this week's The Scottish Farmer for full report, including prizelist and photos of the show leaders, out December 22.