Prices peaked at 12,000gns at a special sale at the Davies family's Somerset farm to celebrate their Davlea herd winning the 2021 Holstein UK Premier Herd competition.

The event, which attracted a large crowd of breeders from all of the country and the Republic of Ireland was topped by the first animal into the ring, Davlea Sidekick Raven VG87-2yr. A potential eighth generation Excellent-classified female, she is a grand-daughter of the Ex94-6 LP130 10* brood cow, Davlea Shottle Raven ET and sired by Walnutlawn Sidekick. Bred from one of the world’s great cow families, she sold due with her second in October sexed to Vogue Solarpower, to Cyril and Martin Millar of Millar Farms, Northern Ireland.

Also selling to Northern Ireland at 11,000gns to Jason Booth of the Beechview herd was Davlea Chief Wattle, a daughter of the reserve champion at the UK Dairy Expo, Davlea Sidekick Wattle VG89. Bred from six generations of Ex or VG cows, and sired by Stantons Chief, she sold and due to calve at two years in December, to Farnear Delta-Lambda.

The Davlea herd is universally recognised for its Alicia family, and it was a five-month-old ET heifer calf bred from the previous National Show champion Davlea Bradnick Alicia Ex-95, that sold next at 7500gns. Her choice of Chief or Lambda daughters, made 7500gs to Wills Bros, buying for the Willsbro herd in Devon.

Two Chief heifer daughters under a year old out of Bradnick Alivia’s Ex-classified Solomon sister made 5200gns selling to JM and BS Jones for their Larchwood herd, and 4800gns to Ayrshire-based breeder, Willie Watson, The Muir, Ochiltree.

Earlier, the two-month-old heifer calf, Davlea Delta-Lambda Alicia 4 ET, made 4600gns to Randolph Miller, the breeder of Bradnick Alicia's dam, Moorshard Windbrook Alicia ET Ex93-2 LP60, buying for his noted Moorshard herd.

John and Brian O’Connor, Kanturk, Co Cork, were also big spenders forking out 7000gns and 5800gns for heifers from the Pledge and Lulu families. Dearest was the seven-month-old heifer calf, Davlea Delta Lambda Pledge 3, bred from seven generations of VG or Ex-classifed cows, with the 5800gns bid given for Davlea Doorman Lulu, which sold due to calve her first at two-years of age, sexed to Lambda.

Other top sellers included Davlea Delta Lambda Rachael, which made 6200gns to John Leahy; Davlea Crushtime Lasenza VG86-2yr, realised 6000gns to W and A Patton of the Ards herd.

One of the most interesting lots was a first choice heifer from six pregnancies due later this year from three of the famous prizewinning Canadian Jacobs herd's best families. Messrs Bird of the Bartonwood herd, in Devon, were the successful purchasers at 5000gns.

averages: Four cows and calved heifers, £6562.50; 12 served heifers, £3963.75; 26 maiden heifers and calves, £3634.61. Overall, 42 female lots, £4007.50. 13 embryos, £928.84.

Auctioneers: Norton and Brooksbank.