Winning ewes 'outstanding'
Outstanding is how judges described this year's winning group in the State Ewe Hogget Competition. The 10 commercially bred spring-shorn ewes, belonging to Rocket and Alanna Harris, scored 940 out of 1000 points.
It was the second time the Grass Patch farmers had entered the competition since taking over the farm from Rocket's father, a three-time winner in 2002, 2004 and 2007.
It also coincided with their wedding anniversary and came with a special commemorative silver plate award recognising the competition's 25th anniversary.
The Harris family has been using Ashgrove genetics for more than 30 years and Rocket said all ewes were paddock fed.
"We run around 900 breeding ewes and have been increasing our numbers every year," he said.
Judge Mitchell Hogg, from Navanvale Merinos in Williams, said ewes from the winning team were well-framed, big barrelly sheep with an even wool type. In second place, and just five points behind, was last year's winner - the Howatson Family Trust's group of 10.
Third place was awarded to RG Newman, of Newdegate, followed by NR and CJ Hobley in fourth and GB and SF Stewart, from Gnowangerup, in fifth.
Judges inspected 13 groups in the competition and $5000 in sponsorship prizes was awarded, including producers' travel costs.
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