Popular vision for future of the Show

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Bob GarnantThe West Australian
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Royal Agriculture Society of WA president Paul Carter has declared the IGA Perth Royal Show of the people, by the people and for the people.

Mr Carter echoed those famous words from a great past world leader, while holding an important heritage English sheep, to declare the Show must go on never to perish from this Earth.

“Without the community of Western Australia doing what it does best, which is getting behind organisations like the RAS that they know serve their community and promote social harmony across our State, we would not be able to stage WA’s biggest community event,” he said.

The first year of Mr Carter’s reign at the Show brought new highlights to close the gap between the city and country, including a display of farming machinery, a world-class parasite exhibition and the rare Lincoln sheep breed’s return after 40 years absence.

RASWA heritage sheep steward Donald Cochrane said the Lincoln had a prominent role in the development of today’s Australian Merino.

“As early as 1841, John Murray from Mt Crawford in SA used Lincoln and English Leicester rams to broaden his wool and improve the staple length, strength and fleece weight of his fine wool Merinos,” he said.

“Other studs followed the successful use of this infusion. The Peppin brothers bought 100 Murray blood ewes and some French Rambouillet rams to develop their strain of Peppin wool.

“Simultaneously they owned a pure flock of Lincoln ewes, but the progeny of those ewes was never recorded in the initial stud records.”

Mr Cochrane said before the turn of the 19th century, many more major sheep studs in SA such as Koonoona, Bungaree and Collinsville were established on similar bloodlines, all containing the great genetics of the Lincoln and English Leicester.

“The Lincoln Flock Book was the first book of stud sheep pedigrees to be established in Australia,” he said.

“Today three of the original Lincoln studs established in 1873 are still registered and selling rams.”

Ross Miller, of Eaglenook Lincoln stud, Keysbrook, introduced a ewe lamb named Mary Todd Lincoln to the IGA Perth Royal Show.
Camera IconRoss Miller, of Eaglenook Lincoln stud, Keysbrook, introduced a ewe lamb named Mary Todd Lincoln to the IGA Perth Royal Show. Credit: Countryman

Two studs exhibited Lincoln sheep at the 2017 Perth Royal show, which were capably judged and commented on by the Australian Stud Sheep Breeders Association president Gavin Wall.

Peter and Jo Gelmi, of Caesia Lincoln stud, located at Burekup, won the supreme exhibit ribbon for their Lincoln ram, while Ross and Ruth Miller, of Eaglenook Lincoln stud, Keysbrook, were delighted to have their ewe lamb, Mary Todd Lincoln, featured with Mr Carter’s appeal to add more agriculture focus to the Show.

It was the Prime SAMM breed that stole the show, with the Squiers family, of Shirlee Downs stud, Quairading, winning both the interbreed exhibit, with a ewe, and the interbreed group of three rams.

They were pipped for the supreme ribbon in the Poll Dorset breed judging by the Garnett family, of Curlew Creek stud, Gnowangerup, who took out their first best of breed award with a ewe.

Highlights in the cattle section included a first interbreed win for the Speckle Park breed which had the Thomas family, of Tungamah stud, Gingin, celebrating their senior bull victory.

Murdoch University won the grand champion beef carcase award with equal points going to two of its entries.

In the main arena, David Dobson, from Argyle Stables, won eight show-jumping events and during the Elders campdraft, 16-year-old WA College of Agriculture student at Harvey, Darci Nancarrow, successfully drafted a steer while riding her horse, Smart Fancy Blue Duck, to take out the inaugural event.

The first RAS competitive campdraft brought riders from as far north as the Kimberley to the deep South of WA, with the participants representing some well-known cattle properties.

The uniquely Australian sporting spectacle with $10,000 in prizes, sponsored by Elders, included over $150,000 worth of horse flesh and $70,000 worth of cattle.

Michael and Stacy Stanton, of Cullalla Feedlot kindly donated the good running Angus steers which enthralled the spectators with their athleticism.

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