The Belclare Sheep Society hosted its annual premier sale at Cillin Hill, Kilkenny, on Tuesday 8 August. The sale was met with a very strong trade, as over 20% of the rams secured €1,000 or more.
The pre-sale show was judged by Eddie O’Gorman and he awarded the Championship title to Kilkenny native, Frank Campion, of the Luskenagh Flock.
The top price of the day went to Paul Smyth of the Silverbrook flock in Co Offaly, with Silverbrook Justin.
The young ram stole the show in the sales ring and caught the eye of numerous pedigree breeders. The hammer fell for Justin at €2,400.
A son of Barry Cunninghams’s Togherberg Hector, he proved to be worth every cent with the €star values of top 1% (€8.92) and top 1% (€3.26) for replacement and terminal indexes respectively.
This ram was purchased by Belclare breeder, Roy Butler, of the Moatland Flock from Mullingar, Co Westmeath.
The first class for judging by the experienced Eddie O’Gorman was the ‘Senior ram’ class. The top honour was bestowed upon the Ballydavis Flock of David Cooke, with their ram, which was originally bred by the Coolgarragh Flock of Liam Delaney.
Laurence Barrett of the Kilmeany Flock claimed the second prize.
The competitive ‘Hogget ram’ class followed, with Eddie awarding the first prize to Tim Keady’s Oltore Hugh, from the renowned Oltore Flock in Co Galway. This powerful hogget scooped the first prize over a stylish ram of Michael Gottstein’s that was bred by the Moatland Flock of Roy Butler, Moatland Hansel.
Third prize in the ‘Large hogget ram’ class went to County Donegal to the flock of Henry and Lewis Kee – their ram Glenafton Hoven showed his power in the show ring.
Tim Keady’s first prize hogget ram, Oltore Hugh, fetched €700, while the highest-priced hogget was Oltore Hurricane, which commanded an impressive €1,800.
This ram was acquired by esteemed pedigree breeder Frank Campion of the Luskenagh Flock, boasting remarkable €star values, ranking in the top 1% for both replacement and terminal indexes.
Ram lamb show
An exceptional line-up of ram lambs were on display for judge Eddie to deliberate over in the ram lamb show.
After careful consideration, first prize was awarded to Luskenagh Johann from Frank Campion’s flock, an exceptional ram that went on to scoop up the Supreme Champion award of the show.
The stylish ram was sired by Kilmeaney Ganger, from the flock of Larry Barrett, who topped the 2021 premier sale with a price of €3,100, who also bred last year’s reserve champion, Coolkellure Harry Maguire.
The 2023 Belclare premier sale champion, Luskenagh Johann, sold for €1,100 and was purchased by pedigree breeders Liam and Eoin Dunne of the Tubber Belclare Flock in Co Offaly.
Second prize was awarded to the renowned Belclare breeder, Michael Gottstein of the Coolkellure Flock, with Coolkellure Jeffrey. This powerful, stylish ram was crowned Reserve Champion and later sold for €600.
Third prize went to long-standing Belclare breeder Liam Delaney, with Coolgarragh Jody, and later sold for €1,000.
This son of Kilmeany Great had €star values of top 4% and top 8% for replacement and terminal indexes respectively, and was purchased by pedigree breeder John Kennedy of the Dranagh Flock from Co Carlow.
The 2023 Belclare premier sale concluded with a fine selection of top-quality females from across the country.
The first prize was awarded to Liam Delaney’s ewe, which sold for €600 and found its new home in the pedigree flock of Adam Stephenson in Co Wicklow.
Tim Keady’s Oltore Flock secured the second prize, selling for €400 to another pedigree breeder named Arthur O’Riordan.
Once again, the third prize was awarded to Liam Delaney ewe, who fetched €600 as she went on to join Adam Stephenson’s pedigree flock in Co Wicklow.