I farm: “With my family outside Stradbally. We have dairy, beef and tillage. We keep all the dairy calves to beef. They’re predominantly British Friesian. We finish most of the suckler calves to beef as well.”

Tillage: “We grow winter and spring barley, beans, fodder beet and maize. The beet is fed to the finishing cattle and the maize silage to the cows. We also keep some barley. The maize has been planted in the open for the last three or four years and it’s working out OK.”

Mixed farming: “Having a mixed farm helps with soil health. The straw is kept for animal bedding and feed and the farmyard manure and slurry all goes back out onto the soil and keeps soil organic matter high. It’s a benefit to the tillage crop yields.”

Busy few weeks: “We made silage over the past few weeks. Aside from the pit silage we took out some strong paddocks and made bales. Rain was welcome for grass growth this week. We have fertiliser and slurry out for grazing and second cut silage ground.”

Macra: “I’m a member of Portlaoise Macra. It’s great for meeting people. There are plenty of social events and it’s often educational. Our club has been very active during the pandemic on Zoom and outdoor activities. It’s nice to see the country coming out of lockdown and more positivity. I got married to Laura last October during the restrictions. It’s been a difficult time for young people.”

Farm skills: “It was great to win farm skills at the weekend with my teammates Liam Brophy and Siobhán Walsh. After a number of years competing we gained a lot of experience. We saw all the difficulties and challenges that can occur and eventually overcame them. It took a lot of hard work and practice to achieve our goal of winning the All-Ireland. There’s a massive focus on safety in the competition which is really important.”