Two years ago Katie, 17, and Renee Anderson, 15, stood last in almost every class at the Royal Melbourne Dairy Show.
They made a decision that day to change those results, and late last month the teenagers dominated the new-look all breeds youth show under Canadian judge Brian Carscadden – taking home $4200 in prize money.
They won Champion, Reserve Champion and Honourable Mention in the senior heifer show, Supreme Champion of the show, and Champion and Reserve Champion handler.
It finished off a spring show programme that also notably included them winning Grand and Reserve Grand Champion handler at the Adelaide Royal two weeks earlier.
Their Supreme Champion heifer, Bluechip Toffees Apple-RC, headed off the winner of the junior heifer show, Quality Ridge Windbrook Bonnie-3-ET, owned by Jayke and Bec Fisher.
Judge Carscadden said Toffees Apple was “striking” with very few faults and she was “very easily” his champion. Sired by Aftershock, she was purchased at the start of this year from Bluechip Genetics and the 18-month-old Holstein heifer still boards at Bluechip. Her grand-dam is the $US1 million cow, KHW Regiment Apple EX96.
“It’s pretty overwhelming, I guess,” Katie Anderson said. “We weren’t expecting it at all. We were shocked how well we went – in everything.”
Katie and Renee’s father, Greg, said he was as happy for his daughters as “a dog with two tails”.
“They’re doing all the work themselves and they’ve taken all the information that has been shared with them, and they are working with it,” he said. “It makes them grow up quicker, but I think it’s better for them in the long run.”
Judge Carscadden had watched the two sisters throughout the day, so he knew what to expect once they hit the ring for the handlers’ competition. Brian is no stranger to leading high profile animals – he was booked three months ahead of World Dairy Expo to lead in every Holstein class for some of the biggest names in the global business.
“For me, the most important thing is: ‘who leads that animal the best they can at all times’,” Brian told the audience.
“Sometimes when I get to the senior handlers class, I ask myself: ‘If I owned a really good one and I was heading to International Dairy Week, for example, who would I choose to show that animal for me? And, there is one person out here that I would hire [his champion, Katie Anderson], because she never gives up.
“She has a big heifer. A difficult heifer. You’ll notice she came into line and she could have settled, but she kept working until she got her in the perfect position. When I came back around the end she had her heifer set up perfectly and I appreciate that effort, and I appreciate that she recognised the heifer wasn’t at her best and she got her to where she needed to be.”
YOUTH SCHOLARSHIP TO INDONESIA
For 18-year-old Keeley Warren, her first Melbourne Show has given her the chance to visit emerging dairy regions in South East Asia – courtesy of a $10,000 Dairy Youth Handlers’ Travel Scholarship. The award was announced at the end of judging and the first-year university student said she was excited and overwhelmed. She works part-time for well-known Holstein and Jersey breeders Stewart and Hayley Menzies, at Nowra, New South Wales.
The show had its detractors in the lead-up to the event, because it is a long way from the heady days when it was one of Australia’s most prestigious dairy shows.
Less than 50 dairy animals were on the ground, and there were no in-milk classes offered. There was also genuine confusion in the lead up to the event, about whether the show was for open exhibitors or for juniors. In the end, open exhibitors worked it out for themselves. Most spectators felt the show had a future with a junior focus.
Judge Carscadden agreed: “I think there’s something to build on from here and it’s up to the people if they want to make it work or not,” he said.
“It’s a really beautiful facility, even though it’s not easy to get in or out of. The quality of the show was good. They weren’t deep classes. They weren’t big classes, but the ones at the top were quite good and I was able to find the type that I like, which is nice. I hope they continue to make some good money available to these young people, because without the youth, where do we go?”
ROYAL MELBOURNE DAIRY SHOW
Judge: Brian Carscadden, Canada
JUNIOR CHAMPION HEIFER – Quality Ridge Windbrook Bonnie-3-ET – sire: Quality Ridge (Jayke and Bec Fisher, Girgarre)
RESERVE – Brindabella McCutchen Nan – sire: BKM McCutchen (SD and JL Sieben, Torrumbarry)
HONOURABLE MENTION – Brindabella Woody Kay – sire: Pine Shelter Clay Wood (SD and JL Sieben, Torrumbarry)
SENIOR CHAMPION – Bluechip Toffees Apple-RC – sire: MS Atlees Sth Aftershock (GB and MM Anderson, Yarroweyah)
RESERVE – Sun Vale Attitude Sara – sire: Damartini Attitude-Red-ET (GB and MM Anderson, Yarroweyah)
HONOURABLE MENTION – Sun Vale Spectrum Renita – sire: Charpentier LFG Spectrum RC (GB and MM Anderson, Yarroweyah)
MOST SUCCESSFUL GUERNSEY HEIFER – Riverton Lewis May – sire: Riverton Wonder Lewis (EST HWR Troutbeck, Yuroke)
MOST SUCCESSFUL JERSEY HEIFER – Brunchilli Glory Belle 2 – sire: Rivendell Nates Glory IMP (owned by Brunchilli Jerseys – shown by Deniliquin High School)
8 – 10 years
1st – Jet Easterbrook (Tatura)
2nd – Catherine Michael (Deniliquin)
10 – 12 years
1st – Bailey Roberts (Katunga)
2nd – Henry Michael (Deniliquin)
3rd – Charlie Waters (Deniliquin)
1st – Christopher Wright (Finley High School)
2nd – Billy Michael (Deniliquin High School)
3rd – Georgia Sieben (Torrumbarry)
JUNIOR CHAMPION HANDLER
Christopher Wright (Finley High School)
14 – 16 years
1st – Renee Anderson (Yarroweyah)
2nd – Lincoln Sieben (Torrumbarry)
3rd – Rosie Archer (Finley High School)
16 – 18 years
1st – Katie Anderson (Yarroweyah)
2nd – Lora Schulz (Cobden)
3rd – Alana Schulz (Cobden)
18 – 21 years
1st – Rachael Barnes (Finley High School)
2nd – Keeley Warren (Wagga Wagga)
3rd – Daniel Charlton (Deniliquin High School)
SENIOR CHAMPION & GRAND CHAMPION HANDLER
Katie Anderson (Yarroweyah)
RESERVE – Renee Anderson (Yarroweyah)
For full class results – http://www.rasv.com.au/Events/RMS_Home/RMDS_Home/RMDS_Results/RMDS_SearchResults/
This article first appeared in the latest edition of Crazy Cow in Print. Click here to learn more.