Archive for Show Reports

The 2012 Breeder’s Choice Awards – The Tanbark Trail Edition

Breeders Choice Awards 2012-300In the age of American Idol, Dancing with the Stars and countless other franchises where the fans decide the outcome, it’s about time for Dairy Breeders to join the decision-making fun..  That is why the Bullvine has created the Breeder’s Choice Awards.  The Breeder’s Choice Awards celebrates fan favorites in the show ring, index cows, sires and dairy celebrities.  It stands alone as the only major award where real people – not industry insiders – determine the winners.

The Winners are?

Over the past month The Bullvine has been conducting surveys on our Facebook page to see exactly  who the fans would choose as the top Holstein show cattle in North America for 2012.  To qualify the animals in each class needed to place in the top five spots at either World Dairy Expo or the Royal (Read more: World Dairy Expo 2012 Holstein Show: A Battle for the Ages and The 2012 Royal Winter Fair Holstein Show – One of the Greatest Stories Evert Told ). After thousands of votes here are the winners:

COBEQUID GOLDWYN DANNY - 2012 Breeder's Choice Spring Heifer Calf

COBEQUID GOLDWYN DANNY – 2012 Breeder’s Choice Spring Heifer Calf

Spring Heifer Calf

  1. Cobequid Goldwyn Danny
    (Read more: Who’s The Next Great One?)
  2. Siemers Gwyn Glam Thisup
  3. Cherry Crest Lavanguard
PETITCLERC GOLDWYN SIDNEY - 2012 Breeder's Choice Winter Heifer Calf

PETITCLERC GOLDWYN SIDNEY – 2012 Breeder’s Choice Winter Heifer Calf

Winter Heifer Calf

  1. Petitclerc  Goldwyn Sidney
    (Read more: Who’s The Next Great One?)
  2. Kingsway Lauthority All In
  3. Sunspark Windbrook Extra
MD-DUN-LOAFIN LAUTH ELLI- 2012 Breeder's Choice Fall Heifer Calf

MD-DUN-LOAFIN LAUTH ELLI- 2012 Breeder’s Choice Fall Heifer Calf

Fall Heifer Calf

  1. MD-Dun Loafin Lauth Elli
    (Read more: Who’s The Next Great One?)
  2. Idee Goldwyn Livia
  3. Siemers Dstry Sunraygal
CO-VALE FEVER CAMILA - 2012 Breeder's Choice Summer Yearling Heifer

CO-VALE FEVER CAMILA – 2012 Breeder’s Choice Summer Yearling Heifer

Summer Yearling Heifer

  1. Co-Vale Fever Camila
    (Read more: Who’s The Next Great One?)
  2. Belfast Goldwyn Lasenza
  3. Bismer Damion Jasmine
JACOBS ATWOOD LILLY BOY - 2012 Breeder's Choice Spring Yearling Heifer

JACOBS ATWOOD LILLY BOY – 2012 Breeder’s Choice Spring Yearling Heifer

Spring Yearling Heifer

  1. Jacobs Atwood Lily Boy
    (Read more: Who’s The Next Great One? and Breeding The Next Show Winners)
  2. Crestbrooke Gap Torrie
  3. Sharp Acres ST Jessy
Lafontaine Aftershock Arrie - 2012 Breeder's Choice Winter Yearling Heifer

Lafontaine Aftershock Arrie – 2012 Breeder’s Choice Winter Yearling Heifer

Winter Yearling Heifer

  1. Lafontaine Aftershock Arrie
    (Read more: Breeding The Next Show Winners)
  2. Springway Sassy Rae
  3. Kingsway Sanchez Armadillo
Kingsway Goldwyn Artichoke - 2012 Breeder's Choice Fall Yearling Heifer

Kingsway Goldwyn Artichoke – 2012 Breeder’s Choice Fall Yearling Heifer

 Fall Yearling Heifer

  1. Kingsway Goldwyn Artichoke
  2. Kingsway Sanchez Magician
  3. Crovalley Knowledge Akika

Junior Champion – MD-Dun Loafin Lauth Elli

R-E-W Happy Go Lucky - 2012 Breeder's Choice Fall Yearling In Milk

R-E-W Happy Go Lucky – 2012 Breeder’s Choice Fall Yearling In Milk

Fall Yearling in Milk

  1. R-E-W Happy Go Lucky
    (Read more: World Dairy Expo Winners: Investment Worthy and Exciting Times for Butlerview)
  2. Dougal Lea Goldwyn Danita
  3. Blondin Alexander Mariska
BVK ATWOOD ABRIANNA - 2012 Breeder's Choice Jr. 2yr old

BVK ATWOOD ARIANNA – 2012 Breeder’s Choice Jr. 2yr old

Jr. 2 year old

  1. BVK Atwood Arianna
    (Read more: World Dairy Expo Winners: Investment Worthy)
  2. Joleanna Gold Pourinrain
  3. Jacobs Atwood Melody
Valleyville Rae Lynn - 2012 Breeder's Choice Sr. 2yr old

Valleyville Rae Lynn – 2012 Breeder’s Choice Sr. 2yr old

Sr. 2 year old

  1. Valleyville Rae Lynn
    (Read more: Quality Cattle Look Good Evert Day,  Don Shwartz: Love what you do and do the best you can! and Quality Holsteins – Well Deserved Congratulations)
  2. Butz-Butler Gold Barbara
  3. Crate Indiana Goldwyn
Robrook Goldwyn Cameron - 2012 Breeder's Choice Jr. 3yr old

Robrook Goldwyn Cameron – 2012 Breeder’s Choice Jr. 3yr old

Jr. 3 year old

  1. Robrook Goldwyn Cameron
  2. Cobequid Goldwyn Leno
  3. Arethusa Jasper Velour
Cookview Goldwyn Monique - 2012 Breeder's Choice Sr. 3yr old

Cookview Goldwyn Monique – 2012 Breeder’s Choice Sr. 3yr old

Sr. 3 year old

  1. Cookview Goldwyn Monique
    (Read more: Exciting Times for Butlerview, RF Goldwyn Hailey: Cash Cow or Cash Hog and International Intrigue – The Secret is Exposed!)
  2. Debeau Jasper December
  3. Quality Gold Danzi

Intermediate Champion  – Cookview Goldwyn Monique

Macpes Fortune Koquine - 2012 Breeder's Choice 4 yr old

Macpes Fortune Koquine – 2012 Breeder’s Choice 4 yr old

4 year old

  1. Macpes Fortune Koquine
    (Read more: Durham vs. Goldwyn: A Clash of Two Titans)
  2. T-Triple-T Gold Prize
  3. Bourgival Goldwyn Oriel
Wendon Goldwyn Allie - 2012 Breeder's Choice 5 yr old

Wendon Goldwyn Allie – 2012 Breeder’s Choice 5 yr old

5 year old

  1. Wendon Goldwyn Allie
  2. Scientific Gold Dana Rae
  3. Rockymountain Talent Licorice
RF Goldwyn Hailey - 2012 Breeder's Choice Mature cow

RF Goldwyn Hailey – 2012 Breeder’s Choice Mature cow

Mature Cow

  1. RF Goldwyn Hailey
    (Read more: World Dairy Expo Winners: Investment Worthy and The Story Behind How Two Full Sisters Dominated Expo Quebec)
  2. Ebyholme Goldwyn Maricia
  3. Harvue Roy Frosty
Starbrite Lyster Lyndsay - 2012 Breeder's Choice Lifetime Production Cow

Starbrite Lyster Lyndsay – 2012 Breeder’s Choice Lifetime Production Cow

Lifetime Production

  1. Starbrite Lyster Lyndsay
  2. Goldenflo Lheros Bubble Gum
  3. Savage-Leigh Leona

Senior & Grand Champion – RF Goldwyn Hailey


The Bullvine Bottom Line

While cows like R-E-W Happy Go Lucky, Cookview Goldwyn Monique and RF Goldwyn Hailey rode their almost cult like followings to dominant victories,  it was really interesting to see the classes where there were different winners than at the Royal or  Madison (Spring Calf, Winter Heifer Calf, Fall Heifer Calf, Spring Yearling, Winter Yearling, Fall Yearling, Junior 3 year old and 4 year old).  Particularly surprising  was that  in two of these classes (Spring Calf and Spring Yearling) the winner was not a class winner at either the Royal or Madison.  The biggest shocker of all has to be Royal and Madison Sr. 2 year old winner, Butz-Butler Gold Barbara, falling to Valleyville Rae Lynn.   It was also interesting to see the battle between Madison Junior Champion, Lafontaine Aftershock Arrie, and Royal Junior Champion, MD-Dun Loafin Lauth Elli, going head to head as they did  both did not attend both  shows.   Elli was the Breeder’s Choice.

What’s next

Continuing in our Breeder’s Choice competition, over the next few weeks we will be conducting polls on Facebook in the following categories:

So be sure to “like” our Facebook page and Click on “Show” in the News feed as Facebook now only shows you about 20% of posts on pages you like. Don’t miss any of the great polls and great conversation.

The Story behind How Two Full Sisters Dominated Expo Quebec

As one of the last shows before Madison, Expo Quebec marks a great opportunity to figure out who are the contenders and who are the pretenders.  Arguably, Quebec breeders have one of the strongest passions for exhibiting top Holstein cattle, and this year’s edition of Expo Quebec did not disappoint.  That why it is so amazing to see two full sisters dominate such a competitive show.  It has been a long time since two full sisters dominated a major show, but that is exactly what happened this past weekend when RF Goldwyn Hailey and RF Goldwyn Halona took home the Grand Champion, HM Grand Champion and the Intermediate Champion honors.  To figure out how this happened we decided to find the story behind the story.

Stepping Up in 2012

RF Goldwyn Hailey  Expo Quebec 2012

RF Goldwyn Hailey Expo Quebec 2012

After spending the 2011 show season in the shadow of Eastside Lewisdale Gold Missy,   it now appears that Hailey is ready to shine, while Missy is off making eggs. Since earning Res. All Canadian and America honors last year, Hailey is ready for 2012.  It makes you almost wish Missy was back. What a battle that would be.

Mammary System - RF Goldwyn Halona - Expo Quebec 2012

Mammary System – RF Goldwyn Halona – Expo Quebec 2012

While Hailey is well known to most show enthusiasts, Halona is  just emerging on the scene.  Despite a strong showing at Madison last year where she finished 10th, Halona, has only  one show victory to her credit at Ayer’s Cliff last year.  However, never underestimate the power of great genetics and a great “hotel”.  And there is no better hotel  than Lookout Holsteins for Halona to mature in.  Callum and the team give the cattle the best care in the world so that they can  live up to their potential.  Halona is certainly responding.

This is No Fluke

When it comes to many great show cattle, we have to recognize that they are such an extreme of the breed that often it is hard for any of their other family members to achieve similar success.  That’s part of what makes this story so intriguing.  Here we have two full sisters achieving success at major shows.  So how does  happen?

Well  in this case it isn`t a fluke it’s great genetics.  Their dam, MELLHOLM LOUIE HANAH EX-92-2E CAN 2* was a show winner in her own right, winning HM. All Canadian Sr. 2YR honors back in 2005.  When you cross the chest width, body depth and pin width of Hanah on the bone quality and set of legs and the proven ability to sire show winners of Goldwyn,  the real question is, “How could you miss?”  When you add in the fact that  along with these two daughters  another full sister, RF GOLDWYN HALTON, also went VG-86-2YR, and you realize the odds are stacked in their favor!

Hailey and the Judge have a History

Judge David Crack Jr.

Judge David Crack Jr.

From November 2006 until September 2007 the Judge David Crack Jr. and his family Crackholm Holsteins owned Hailey, and are currently marketing a VG-86 2yr Baxter daughter, CRACKHOLM BAXTER HANNAH.  Does that make easier for David to win with Hailey? Yes and no.  “Yes!” because the judge has had firsthand knowledge of how great the cow performs. “No!”Because he knows that all eyes are on him and he had better be 100% sure in his decision.  But David is not afraid to make the tough decisions as we have pointed out before on The Bullvine (read Dairy Show Judging – It Takes Courage), when he showed the courage of his convictions by choosing to win with Earlen Goldwyn Secret over the highly touted Craigcrest Rubies Gold Rejoice. This time he is taking the 10th place Sr. 2yr old from Madison last year (where Rejoice was the class winner) and making her his intermediate champion.

Does this build or break David’s credibility?  “It definitely builds.” He is not afraid to stand behind what he thinks.  I have always had great  respect for David from the time I first met him at 4-H shows.

The Bullvine Bottom Line

Gen-Com paid $100,000 to purchase Hailey back in July 2010 at the Excellence of Cowtown International Sale, but if she marches to the head of the line at Madison or The Royal ,she will look cheap compared to some others that where purchased for upwards of a million dollars  attempting  to get the same thing done.  And, who knows, maybe Halona will be right behind her.  That would make them the first full sisters to win the honor.  At the Bullvine, we pride ourselves at bringing you more than just the results. We try to bring you the story behind the story.   Now you have it.


For the full show results check out – Quebec Holstein Show Results

Dairy Show Judging – It Takes Courage

Sr. 3 yr old Reasons Ontario Spring Show 2012I had the opportunity to attend Ontario Summer Show last week and saw something that really got me thinking.  During the Senior 3 year old class, Judge David Crack Jr showed the courage of his convictions by choosing to win with Earlen Goldwyn Secret over the highly touted Craigcrest Rubies Gold Rejoice.

Setting the Stage

By now everyone has heard of Craigcrest Rubies Gold Rejoice.  She is the 3 time All-Canadian, 3 time All-American, Res. Int. Champion from Madison last year.  But who has heard of Earlen Goldwyn Secret?  Her only show winnings of record are 2nd Sr. 2yr at a county show last year.  Their records could not be more different.  Rejoice has people drooling in the barns over her massive size and her amazing frame.  Did this nobody deserve to beat her?

Setting the Precedent

Throughout the day, Judge Crack had always gone with the most correct, most dairy heifers and 2yr olds.  Therefore, when it came time for the Sr. 3yr old class.  To some it may have seemed that he had worked himself into a corner.  He could stick with what he had gone with all day and win with Secret or give in to popular pressure and win with Rejoice.

As Judge Crack switched the two from his initial pull to then place Secret on top, in discussion with the ringside judges it was noted that making that move  would “take a set of balls”.  Big ones! Judge Crack either had to win with Secret or he had to put her into third, as the 2nd and 3rd place cows very much typed in together.

I have always found this to be a very complex and interesting problem.  The Dairy Cow Scorecard is clear on the weightings and you are taught that every animal is to be judged individually.  So then why does a judge have to put cattle in groups?  The best way I can describe it, is to remember what Murray Reisner and Lowell Lindsay once said to me.  “While the judging scorecard is very clear every judge has their preferences, and if you are going to stray from the scorecard in your preferences, you need to be consistent.  So if there is a particular type of cow you like, be consistent.”

Consistency is actually a huge part of earning credibility as a judge.  While everyone may not always agree with your placings, if they can follow them, and see that you are consistent, they may not agree but they will respect your decision.  As a spectator and an avid show advocate this is my biggest beef with some judges.  I would like to tell them, “I don’t need to agree with you, but make sure I can follow your placings.  Follow a consistent pattern, and you will earn my respect.


A question was raised on Friday that I want to address before it goes too far.  “Is Judge Crack favoring his fellow Quebecers?”  Judge Crack’s  pattern was definitely there with  the winning Senior 2 yr Old, Junior 3 year old, Senior 3 year old and 4 year old who would eventually be pulled to the centre of the ring for the final selection of Champions.  Indeed, a heck of a day for Ferme Yvon Sicard, Ferme Blondin and Ghyslain Demers.  However, having watched the classes first hand and knowing Judge Crack as I do, I would say it was more that the exhibitors knew exactly the type of cow Judge Crack likes and knew that it would be worth their while to make the long trip to The Ontario Summer Show.

If you look at the winner of every cow class, they all type in together extremely well.  You had to have a great udder, dairyness throughout and you had better have an animal with great mobility.  That was supported  by an exhibitor of a 2nd place animal who reported that as soon as his cow stuttered (blamed on a rock in the ring) he knew that he would not be winning that class.

Lily vs. Beauty

Watching the Sr 3 Yr Old  class unfold reminded me of 1999 when I had the chance to work with the western Canadian string when  ACME STAR LILY was going head to head with RAINYRIDGE TONY BEAUTY.  With both cows being from the same show string tension and speculation was high to see how Judge Comtois would place these two cows.  Compared to Rejoice and Secret their difference in backgrounds was not as great.  At that point Lily was the two time reigning Royal Grand Champion and Beauty was six years off her Royal win and had won Madison that year.  However, in a similar way to Judge Crack’s handling at The Ontario Summer Show, Judge Comtois stayed true to the same style he had selected all day and went with Lily.  Of course, there was a wide-ranging response from the ringside.

Bottom Line

The biggest thing I love about these cases is that both Judge Crack and Judge Comtois stayed true to what they liked and did not give in to the ringside pressure.  While everyone is entitled to their opinion, the opinion that matters most is that of the judge.  For all those who would have placed them differently, “Fantastic!”  I am sure you could have given a great   set of reasons too. The thing you need to remember about judging is to stay true to what you like. The judge’s job is to set a pattern for the breed. Do that and you will earn the respect of everyone that matters!  It takes guts to pick the glory!


Dairy Cattle Showing: For Ego or Profit?

There is no question that, for many dairy breeders, there is nothing more exciting than winning at the Royal or Madison.  Along with the fame comes the fortune.  But what happens for the other 99% of people who don’t win?  Do they make any money?  Does their need for inner self-gratification get satisfied?

There are many reasons that breeders show their cattle at the local fair, such as supporting their local community, or helping teach their children the joys of the dairy cattle community.  However, when it comes to competing at the championship, state and national level, is there really justification for the time, effort and expense?

Over the years, I have seen a few things happen when it comes to making money in the show cattle business:

  1. A breeder either “gets lucky” or “by design” breeds a great one, and, if they are fortunate enough to know what they have, they sell it for a significant profit to one of the many cattle dealers that run the roads.
  2. When it comes to buying the top animals, it really comes down to a small group of buyers.  These buyers seem to trade cattle like they are playing cards, and it’s hard to tell if money is actually being made, or is it the same money going around in circles.
  3. Unknowing breeders purchase progeny from these cattle hoping that they can breed the next great one.  (For more on this read Great Show Cows: Can They Pass It On?)

Should Dairy Cattle be more like Race Horses?

The dairy cattle industry is not like the horse racing industry that has gambling revenue to support their cause.  I can still remember in Ontario when they wanted to add slot machines to the horse racing tracks and the breeders fought it tooth and nail.  In the end it more than quadrupled there prize money and made many breeders very very rich.  Is there any way we could add betting on show results?  (Oh wait that is a can of worms we may not want to touch. Watch for it in a future Bullvine article).

In reality, the only ones that really make money at this are the small few that have a class winner at Madison or the Royal, or those that are fortunate enough to get lucky with a homebred animal that can compete at the National level.  All the rest are spending a great deal of money to support their ego.

Athletes vs. Doctors

I equate it to the same amount of money that big time sports players make.  Yes, you see these million dollar contracts for the big name athletes.  However, for every one of those there are twenty that you never heard of that spent a great deal of time and energy chasing a dream.  The scary part is that, much like in real life, the big name athletes seem to make more money than say a doctor.  They’re good at a game.  Doctor’s save lives.  The same is true at the top sales.  You see the major show cattle selling for millions of dollars and yet the top LPI or TPI cattle don’t sell for as much.  Don’t the top TPI or LPI cows drive the most profit for dairy breeders? Shouldn’t they command the highest prices?

The Bullvine Bottom Line

When investing in show cattle the big question you need to answer is why you are doing it.  Are you investing to make a huge profit?  If so I wish you luck.  However, if you are investing because you love preparing  great cattle to parade in top showcase events or love the thrill of competing against the best in the business then more  power to you.  The big thing is know your own reasons and stay within what works for your operation.  Profit. Ego. Passion.  Where do you pull into the line?



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