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British Friesian calf judge Owain Harries


What is your previous judging experience and what have the


highlights been? I have been part of the National Dairy Shorthorn judging panel since 2008. I have had the pleasure of judging at many shows including several major shows including the National Calf Show, Great Yorkshire, Westmorland and Balmoral. This year I was honoured to judge the interbreed championships at Balmoral, Staffordshire, Westmorland and now the British Friesian section at the All Breeds All Britain Calf Show. Judging at the calf show has been one of my highlights, with one class having more than 20 calves forward. It was great to see quality and quantity in the classes and getting to be involved in an event that has such enthusiasm from the breeders and young people involved is fantastic.


You have been


involved in HYB in the past - what were your highlights?


HYB is a great club to be part of and I have been fortunate


to have the opportunity to compete and have success at club and national level. Winning the President’s medal has to be the highlight for me, as well as winning the National Reasoned stock judging at the Weekend Rally. Having been a Coordinator in the South Wales Club, it was great to work with the next generation of youngsters coming up the ranks and seeing them do well in competitions too. As a Club, South Wales has always been pretty strong in stock judging competitions, so sometimes the biggest challenge has been to qualify within the club. Being asked to represent your Club in anything is a great achievement.


What is your favourite cow of all time and why?


In my role at Cogent I have the pleasure of seeing and working with many great cows. One of the cows that always comes to mind when I think of my favourite cows is Larcrest Chenoa. She was a VG87 two- year old Planet daughter out of Larcrest Crimson, making her a granddaughter of the famous Shottle daughter Cosmopolitan. From a home point of view, a cow that I have enjoyed working with most has been Weeton Shark Celicia EX95. She is the most correct, balanced cow we have ever had and had that balance of being a great show cow, bred well and produced in the parlour.


Over the years is there an All-Britain Calf winner that stands out for you?


On the day that the Jordan Flo won the Holstein section, I remember thinking that this was a great calf and was


similar to what


I would call an ideal calf. She had all the qualities without being extreme in any way.


What are your best memories of the All


Britain Calf Show? For me there are several, but up there is having a calf from home qualify to compete in the Holstein classes. She was a purchased calf called Llydan Gibson TC Ramira, who stood in the top 10. Judging the Dairy Shorthorns is also up there along with turning up on the Friday morning with a team of calves that you can see transform hour by hour and the great sense of team spirit as everyone pulls together to turn the calves out for showing.


What for you makes a worthy All Britain winner?


For me a worthy winner is a heifer that is correct in every way, that is functional and is relatable to the commercial milk producer, but has that added style and presence. No matter what breed you have, it should be a type of animal that is capable of delivering what the commercial milk producer needs. For me, from a calf point of view legs, feet and dairy strength are key priorities.


Photography by Richard Hodgson


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