Claypans ram reigns supreme

Bob GarnantThe West Australian

After a nine-year wait, the Bolt family, of Claypans stud, were again victorious as they won the supreme award in the Merino section at the 2015 IGA Perth Royal Show.

The Poll Merino stud, located at Corrigin, exhibited its highly successful four-tooth medium wool ram, which was admired for its big size and wool-cutting ability.

Judge Tim Dalla, of Collinsville stud, South Australia, said the big ram - which weighed about 160kg - was structurally correct and would cut a lot of wool.

The ram was earlier judged grand champion Poll Merino ram at the show, and was also the supreme exhibit at Wagin Woolorama in March.

Claypans stud co-principal Steven Bolt said there was a high standard of quality in this year's four main show competitions.

"It is a great honour to win the prestigious supreme award and to be recognised by your peers," he said.

With many competitors at the Perth Royal Show from the Wheatbelt, Mr Bolt said the State's grain- growing areas showed a lot of confidence and optimism about the sheep industry.

"Meat and wool prices are looking very positive for the future," Mr Bolt said.

The Bolt family came up trumps in several championships at the show, including winning the pen of three rams award (a $4000 prize), sponsored by the Royal Agricultural Society.

In the supreme line-up, the Claypans ram was judged against four other eligible entries.

This included the grand champion Merino ram, an ultra-fine 14.8 micron ram exhibited by Russell and Heather Meaton, of Misty Hills stud, Kojonup.

Fine wool judge Warren Russell, of Melrose stud, Victoria, said the Meatons' ram had tremendous ultra-fine wool with extreme style and it stood square.

Mrs Meaton said the ram was a first drop from an AI Grassy Creek sire.

Also in the running for best Merino of the show was a grand champion Poll Merino ewe exhibited by the Button family, of Manunda stud, Tammin.

During judging, Mr Dalla said the medium wool two-tooth ewe had long stable wool that was well nourished.

He said the ewe had purity of muzzle and stood well on her feet.

The grand champion Merino ewe, exhibited by the Mullan family of Eastville Park stud in Wickepin, was also in the line-up for the top award.

Mr Russell said the strong wool ewe was well balanced with great density and had a feminine head.

The junior champion ram, exhibited by Claypans stud, was an autumn-shorn medium wool Poll Merino ram.

It was also judged the grand champion autumn-shorn ram at this year's Royal Show.

Mr Russell said it had tremendous length of staple and neck extension and a sirey head.

In the unhoused and unrugged competition, Allaneena stud, of Northampton, won the award for champion ram with a 17.6-micron Poll Merino entry.

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