THE SUN always seems to shine at Straiton Show and despite a weekend of wet weather forecast, it stayed true to form and was complemented by a busy livestock section, with more exhibitors than in previous years.

There was a strong line up for the overall championship and after much deliberation, Robert Marshall, Potts of Rayne, found his champion in the Limousin cross heifer, Queen of Hearts, bred by Jennifer Hyslop, Balluskie, Barhill. This adds to champion tickets achieved so far this season. The rising one-year-old is by Waindale UFO and out of a Charolais cross cow bought from David Henderson, Auchenrivoch.

The reserve overall was the Blackface section winner. Known for its big entry, this year’s section had a total of 19 entered in the ewe hogg section alone. This class provided the breed champion and reserve overall for local breeders the Kays, from Gass Farm.

This was their home-bred rough ewe hogg, whose dam, by a £13000 Elmscleugh, stood overall champion in 2014. This is the second consecutive year they have taken this title with a home-bred ewe hogg.

The dairy section was won again this year by 2018’s champion Holstein, Muir Zelgadis Lanie, owned by WA Watson, Muir Farm, Mauchline. His six-year old cow which calved in April is producing 52 litres of milk daily, with a projection of 13,000 litres this year.

A strong and improved turnout of exhibitors in the Belted Galloway section saw the champion ticket awarded to Jennifer Taylor’s Tobergill herd, Brae of Gadgirth, Sundrum, by Ayr. She did the double, picking up both champion and reserve with the top ticket going to Tobergill Uist, a rising three-year-old by Shelsley Dallas.

Leading awards

Dairy (Judge: J Sloan, Dormieston), Champion and reserve – WA Watson, Muir Farm, Mauchline, with his six-year-old Holstein cow, Muir Zelgadis Lanie, which calved in April and is producing 52 litres of milk daily. She stood champion at Straiton last year. Reserve was his 10-month old Holstein heifer Mandy, which is by Beemer and out of a home-bred dam. All classes – WA Watson.

Belted Galloways (Judge: P Hunter Blair, Nethercleugh), champion and reserve – J Taylor, Brae of Gadgirth, Sundrum, Ayr, leading with her rising three-year-old heifer, Tobergill Uist. The home-bred youngster is in calf to Turin Jumbo and is due this October. She is by their late stock bull Shelsley Dallas and out of Tobergill Questa. Reserve was the rising two-year-old heifer, Tobergill Vaila, which was the top junior heifer at Ayr. She is out of Tobergill Stornoway and by the AI bull Mochrum Kingfisher. Bull – J and B Landers. Cow – Z Kirk. Calf under one-year-old – J and R McLaughland. Two-year-old heifer and one-year-old heifer – J Taylor. Young handlers – C Cook.

Continental (Judge: P Hunter Blair). Champion and champion of champions – J Hyslop, Balluskie, Barrhill, with her home-bred Limousin cross heifer, Queen of Hearts. She has had a successful show season so far, winning champion at Dalry and Newmilns and picking up the reserve overall at Beef Expo. This yearling is by Waindale UFO and out of a Charolais cross cow bought from David Henderson, Auchenrivoch. She will be shown at the Royal Highland Show and Great Yorkshire this summer. Reserve – A Maguire, Low Three Mark, Stoneykirk, Stranraer, with his 14-month-old Limousin cross bullock, Cracker. He was bought at Carlisle in March this year and was bred by Brian Harper, at Greenwells. He will be shown locally this summer and is aiming for LiveScot at the back-end of the year. Bullock – A Maguire. Heifer – J Hyslop.

Blackface (Judge: Q. Dunlop, Elmscleugh). Champion,inter-breed sheep champion and reserve champion of champions – JW Kay and Co, Gass, Straiton, with a home-bred rough ewe hogg. She is by a £20,000 Auldhouseburn tup and out of a dam by a £13,000 Elmscleugh, which stood overall champion here in 2014. Reserve – W Stevenson and Son, Balrazzie, Ballantrae, with a one-crop ewe which won champion at Ayr, New Cumnock and champion sheep at the spring show in Newton Stewart already this year. She is by an £85,000 Elmscleugh tup and out of a Auldhouseburn ewe. Aged ram, ewe lamb, ewe hogg (shorn) – D Morrison. Tup hogg – Chirmorrie. Tup hogg (shorn), ewe hogg, best pair of ewe hoggs and group of three – JW Kay. Tup lamb – Knockdon. Ewe with Blackface lambs at foot – W Stevenson and Son. Ewe with lamb shown by shepherd/family member – D McMillan. Blackface ewe hogg shown by hired shepherd – (confined to Straiton parish) – J Welsh.

Texel (Judge: N. Douglas, Catslackburn). Reserve interbreed, champion and reserve – J and G Patterson, Oxenshaw, Mauchline, with their ewe hogg, out of a home-bred ewe by Castlecairn Vavavoom and by Sportsman Astar. She stood reserve inter-breed at Ayr and overall inter-breed at Newmilns the previous weekend. Reserve was their three-crop Texel ewe by Cornmore Velvet Jacket and out of a home-bred ewe. She is from the 40-strong Sorn ewe flock and stood interbreed champion at Catrine show. Tup and tup lamb – W Barneil. Ewe with lambs at foot, ewe hogg, ewe lamb and group of three – J and G Patterson.

Suffolk (Judge: N. Douglas) Champion and reserve – A Clark, Meikle Glengyre, Leswalt, Stranraer, who was champion here last year, this time taking the title with a January-born ewe lamb, Glengyre Mrs Brown’s Girl. She is by Broomknowes Beechy’s Boy and is out of a home-bred dam. Reserve was his home-bred two-crop ewe, Glengyre Jenny, by Castleisle Gold Medal out of a Redbrae ewe. Tup – W Barneil. Ewe and ewe lamb – A Clark. Tup lamb and group of three – J Barclay.

AOB sheep (Judge: N. Douglas). Champion – J Barclay, Mid Brockloch, Maybole, with his Beltex shearling tup, Beachy Dennis the Menace. He is by Kingledores Battleaxe, which was purchased for £10,000 at Carlisle in 2017 and is out of a home-bred dam by Gregors Achilles, bought for £9000 at Carlisle in 2016. He hails from a flock of 60 Beltex ewes, with the family farm also keeping 100 Suffolk’. Reserve – D and I Walker, Laigh Alticane, Pinwherry, with a home-bred two-crop Border Leicester ewe. She is by Knowehead Prospect, which bred a tup lamb sold at Lanark for £3300 in 2017 and is out of a dam by Eildon Merrick. Straiton was her first outing and she will be heading next week to the Highland. Tup any age, ewe hogg, ewe lamb, tup lamb and group of three – J Barclay. Ewe – D and I Walker.

Commercial sheep (Judge: N. Douglas). Champion – R Baird, Dalhowan Farm, Crosshill, with a Texel ewe with a pair of March-born Suffolk lambs at foot. Sired by a home-bred tup, they are out of a Laigh Alticane-bred dam. Reserve – J Frame, Blairston Mains, Ayr, with a home-bred pair of March-born Beltex cross lambs. They are by a Beltex cross tup and out of a cross ewe, Straiton was their first outing. Two cross lambs Suffolk sire and any other breed of ewe with pair of lambs – R Baird. Two cross lambs any other sire – J Frame.

Blueface Leicester (Judge: J Holden, N Ireland). Champion – S Guild, Ashmark, New Cumnock, with a two-month-old ewe lamb. She is by J66 Cottage Giraffe and out of a dam by the H6 Easter Dawyck. Reserve – S Rorison, Dallowie Farm, Patna, was a two-shear tup purchased at Kelso in 2018 and bought from Firth. He is by Nunscleugh G1, a tup which sired the lambs which ran with first prize crossing Blackface. Tup – S Rorison. Ewe, ewe hogg and group of three – M Drummond, Cassington. Ewe lamb – S Guild.

Mules (Judge: J Holden), champion – A Shennan, Farden, Turnberry, with a home-bred March-born ewe lamb on her first outing. She is by the £5500 J14 Blarnavaid tup and out of a Dranandow ewe. She will be shown at the Highland. Reserve – S Rorison’s home-bred two-crop-ewe by a Quarry House tup bought at Kelso in 2015. She is out of a home-bred ewe and was shown nursing a pair of April-born lambs. Mule ewe lamb – A Shennan. Mule ewe and Blackface with pair of Mule lambs – S Rorison.

Young handlers – Overall sheep – Bruce Guild. Overall cattle – Calum Cook.