BIG prize tickets and even bigger price tags are the name of the game for the team at Newton of Logierait when they secured another overall championship and top price of £7800 at the Royal Northern Spring Show, on Wednesday.

There was no doubting heifers attracted the best of the trade and this was evident in the averages as 21 heifers cashed in to average £2400.91 or 537p per kg compared to 18 bullocks which levelled at £1304 or 276p per kg.

Filling the top spot was an 11-month-old heifer from father and son team, John and Craig Robertson, who run 160 cross cows alongside 700 cross ewes on the outskirts of Logierait, near Ballinluig. Selling to renowned showman and fishmonger, Duncan Morrison, who will take the 376kg heifer to a new home at Cairn Nulla, Burnside, Kinlochbervie, she is by the Newton’s Limousin stock bull, Powerhouse Harlequin, while her home-bred dam is a Limmy cross whose genetics include Cloughhead Rattle on to Cowtham Justice.

“It was a tremendous show of cattle, with the heifer classes particularly strong,” commented the judge, Mark Harryman, who shows cattle from his base at Swainsea Barn Farm, Pickering, Yorkshire. “The champion is a lovely and sweet heifer that’s not too big and will go on to do well for summer showing.”

The Scottish Farmer:

        Reserve heifer and reserve supreme, William Moir's Magic Mojo

Mr Harryman was also full of praise his reserve supreme champion, William Moir’s Magic Mojo, from Home Farm Cairness, Fraserburgh. This British Blue cross heifer by Empire d’Ochain is bred out of the same cow – a former Balmoral Show champion – as William’s Mini Mojo, which he did well with last year. This was William’s best ever result at the Spring Show, and he retained Magic Mojo for showing during the summer.

Back to the string of nine cattle from Newton of Logierait and the Robertsons commanded the dearest of the trade, with their next best price of £3500 paid by Wilson Peters, who brings in his own share of show success from his team at Monzie, near Crieff. For his money, Wilson takes home another Powerhouse Harlequin-sired heifer in the shape of a May, 2017-born entry that tipped the scales at 343kg and stood first in her class.

Last year’s judge, Devonshire lass Lyn Pidsley, of Upton Ley Farm, Payhembury, Honiton, forked out £3100 for a second prize heifer weighing 450kg. Placed second in her class, this entry was originally bred by John McAllister, at West Thomaston, and is sired by Easegillhead Exterminator, a Limousin bull that has produced a number of winners and top prices over the years.

The sire of last year’s record-setting £9000 heifer, Calogale Irresistible, was behind the Robertsons’ next highest lot when a similarly aged heifer sold to Messrs Cormack and Swanson, Blairbuie, Caithness. She crossed the weighbridge at 448kg.

Gordon Troup received a top of £1900 for a Limousin cross heifer originally bred by the Duncan family at Achdregnie. This January, 2017-born lass, which weighed 538kg, heads to Little Tottingworth, Broadoak, Heathfield, with Jason and Sarah Wareham.

Just behind on £1800 when sold to John Lumgair, East Idvies, Letham, was a home-bred Limousin cross heifer by Lodge Henri from Gordon Carroll, Edendiack, Gartly. Born in March, 2017, she weighed in at 370kg.

The Scottish Farmer:

         The McConachie family's Mr Muscle was bullock champion

The bullock champion, Mr Muscle, from the McConachie family – James together with his show team of son Gary, and daughter Suzie – was next in the trade stakes when sold to K MacIver, Mouir House, Avoch, Black Isle, for £1700. Achieving a best Spring Show result for the family from Lethendry, Cromdale, this home-bred nine-month-old is among the first crop of calves by a French-bred stock bull and out of a Limousin cross cow from the 70-cow herd.

The Scottish Farmer:

          Mark Robertson's Gordy was reserve bullock

Also in the prizes, but not offered for sale, was Mark Robertson’s Gordy, a 10-month-old bullock bought from Gordon Cameron, but originally bred by the McLarens at Classlochie. Gordy, a 480kg stot, was bought at Thainstone in October, went on to win the Young Farmers’ championship at the Rising Stars show held at the Christmas Classic, and will next contest the YF overwintering competition.

LEADING awards:

Unhaltered heifer – 1, J Robertson and Co, Newton of Logierait, Pitlochry, Lim X, 423kg, £1200.

Haltered heiferA (lightest) – 1, J Robertson and Co, Lim X, 343kg, £3500; 2, S Irvine, Anside Pedigree, Braehead, Drummuir, Lim, 328kg, unsold; 3, G Carroll, Edendiack, Gartly, Huntly, Lim X, 370kg, £1800. C – 1, heifer champion and supreme champion, J Robertson and Co, Lim X, 376kg, £7800; 2, B Duffton and R Stuart, Bogie Street, Huntly, Char, 412kg, not for sale; 3, J Robertson and Co, Lim C, 430kg, £1250. E – 1, reserve heifer and reserve supreme, W Moir, Moir Livestock, Home Farm, Fraserburgh, BB X, 448kg, not for sale; 2, J Robertson and Co, Lim X, 450kg, £3100; 3, J Robertson and Co, Lim X, 448kg, £2100. G – 1, Fraser Family, Easter Clune, Lethen, Lim X, 564kg, not for sale; 2, B Duffton and R Stuart, Lim X, 580kg, not for sale; 3, WG Troup, Shaggart, Sauchen, Lim X, 538kg, £1900. I – 1, B Duffton and R Stuart, Lim X, 600kg, not for sale; 3, W Moir, BB X, 615kg, not for sale; 3, L Lawson, Hungtly Lodge, Huntly, BB, 600kg, £1500.

Haltered bullockB (lightest) – 1 and bullock champion, J McConachie and Son, Lethendry, Cromdale, Lim X, 390kg, £1700; 2, S Irvine, Lim X, 428kg, £1150; 3, C Stuart, Lettoch, Braes of Glenlivet, Lim X, 426kg, £1200. D – 1, J Robertson and Co, Lim X, 432kg, £1350; 2, J Robertson and Co, Lim X, 445kg, £1400; 3, C Stuart, Lim X, 437kg, unsold. F – 1 and reserve bullock, M Robertson, Fodderletter Farms, Tomimntoul, BB X, 480kg, not for sale; 2, I Miller, c/o Miller Farms, North Lurg, Midmar, Lim X, 480kg, £1160; 3, I Miller, Lim X, 496kg, £1180. H – 1, J Robertson and Co, Lim X, 540kg, £1450; 2, G and J Greenlaw, Balgairn Farms, Mulloch View, Dinnet, Lim X, 519kg, unsold; 3, G and J Greenlaw, Char X, 526kg, £1450. J – 1, L and A Allan, Arnsow, Kirkmichael, Maybole, Char X, 595kg, unsold; 2, JG Reid, Tullochleys, Clatt, Huntly, A-A X, 685kg, unsold; 3, RG Youngson, Bendauch, Kinellar, Aberdeen, Lim X, 630kg, £1400.