Winner of the fourth annual ANZ and NSW SMBA Southern Tablelands flock ewe competition, Bruce Nixon said the breeding philosophy of he and his wife Narelle on Clovelly, Frogmore is simple.
"We want something that is easy, free growing and cutting a good soft stylish fleece averaging 19 micron," Mr Nixon said.
"We had always been a first-cross enterprise but decided a couple of years ago to phase them out and this year will be the first time we will join Border Leicesters to our classed sheep.
"But we are only going to join the top 60 percent to keep our good standard of first cross ewe to sell."
Mr Nixon admitted his maiden ewes had a good run through the drought grazing in big paddock and having plenty of room.
"They have only been fed in the past three or four weeks since they were entered in the Boorowa flock ewe competition," he said.
The flock won that competition.
Mr Nixon also paid tribute to his mate, neighbour and fellow shearer for his work classing the Tara Park-blood flock and also Guy Evans from Tara Park, Boorowa for his support.
Judge Doug Constance, Werralong, Berridale is a past winner of the Berridale ewe competition and he complimented Bruce and Narelle on the presentation of their sheep.
"They are a great line of sheep ... structurally correct with a good skin type and good nourishment coming through in a hard year," he said.
Fellow judge Ben Lane, Windridge Farms, Young and former manager Uardry, Hay said the ewes should join very well as they are in excellent condition.
"These days we talk about looking after your young ewes well and this is a perfect example," he said.
"I enjoyed looking at their skin type with the really soft handling wool, good staple length and with a good carcase."
They are an uncomplicated sheep with very correct conformation, Mr Lane said.
One point Mr Nixon wanted to make was he keeps the older ewes as breeders if they continue to get in lamb.
He tags their progeny to follow their genetic progress through the flock.
"We think the older ewes if they are productive will continue to add to our flock and we can place pressure of the maidens," he said.
The Clovelly flock was classed at 30 percent.
Speaking generally to the assembled crowd, Mr Lane addressed the issue of having an outside influence on the breeding and selection of Merino flocks.
"I think it is worthwhile getting someone in to class your sheep," he said.
"It will open your mind, makes good conversation at classing about what you are targeting and looking at.
"Classing your sheep should be a good day."
Second in the championship was awarded to the Tara Park-blood flock entered by Matt McGrath, Clear View South, Boorowa.
They are classed by Guy Evans, Tara Park, Boorowa and had been placed second in the Boorowa competition.
Mr Evans classed the maidens at 19 percent.