The anticipation was high and the bidding didn't disappoint at Yarrawonga's Santa Gertrudis bull sale on Thursday, when Scott and Wendy Ferguson, Glenn Oaks stud, Nobby outlaid $150,000 for the second lot into the ring, Yarrawonga Katmandu R236.
The result set a new record for the Santa Gertrudis breed for the Bassingthwaighte family, ironically breaking the record of $126,000 set last September by the Glenn Oaks stud at the Santa Central sale.
Bidding on Thursday began at $40,000, with $5000 bids being taken around the ring in the early stages until the contenders narrowed with a raising of the stakes to $10,000 bids at the $100,000 mark.
A horned bull, Katmandu is the son of Yarrawonga H Bomb (P), the 2018 Brisbane Royal junior champion and grand champion bull, and is the first of H Bomb's calves offered for sale.
As part of the Yarrawonga 2021 Ekka team, Scott Ferguson had been preparing Katmandu at Nobby, where his sire power was front and centre.
"I had H Bomb at home too - this one certainly has the same sort of body, thick and soft," he said.
"He's very correct, there's plenty of meat in him, and he's soft - that's a big thing.
"He was a standout in the Yarrawonga team all year."
The horned bull tipped the scales at 914kg at 23 months and had an eye muscle measurement of 137 square centimetres.
Yarrawonga stud principal Andrew Bassingthwaighte said he loved the bull, describing him as perfectly put together.
"Thanks so much to Scott and Wendy Ferguson - he must have performed well at their place."
Sargood Enterprises at Manresa, Augathella were the underbidders for Katmandu. They were able to use their dollars to buy Yarrawonga R454 (PS) six lots further along in the catalogue, paying $55,000.
The sale opened at dizzying heights when the Hatton family's Diamond H stud at Chinchilla paid $90,000 for Yarrawonga Krafty R6 (P).
Krafty was sired by Yarrawonga Fixer (P), the interbreed champion bull at the 2017 Ekka.
Krafty's stylish outlook, his dark coat, softness, sheath and good temperament were the deciding factors for Diamond H principal Shane Hatton, who also purchased Yarrawonga R132 (PP) for $40,000.
He was one of 108 people with bid cards for the sale, which grossed $2,424,000 and averaged $15,245 for the 159 bulls sold, a total clearance under the hammer.
The first 10 lots at the sale were sold for an average of $57,700, also going to the Speed family, Brigodoon, Taroom; Wilamba Santa Stud, Jambin; Strathmore Santa Gertrudis, Blackall; Gradna Pastoral, Talwood; Goolagong Santa Gertrudis, South Australia; Hardigreen Park, Tamworth; and Hedges Santas, Broadbeach.
The top commercial bull, Yarrawonga R660 sold for $20,000 to JW Roberts, Springsure.
Kevin and Sandy Southern, Secret Plains, St George didn't step into the sale until after 100 bulls had been sold, but finished as the top volume buyer with 13 bulls beside their names, all purchased for the starting price of $5000.
They just edged out a buyer from Elders Alice Springs, who bought 11 bulls for a $5545 average.
By the end of the sale, bulls had been purchased by beef producers from Shepparton in Victoria, Jamestown and Truro in South Australia, Boyup Brook in Western Australia, and Inverell, Casino and Wellington in NSW.
In Queensland, bulls found new homes from Cloncurry to Esk.
The sale was a landmark for Andrew and Fiona Bassingthwaighte, being the first time the catalogue was filled solely with Yarrawonga bulls.
Mr Bassingthwaighte said the huge stud support, as well as that from commercial supporters, had been very gratifying.
The sale was conducted by Elders, with Michael Smith, Elders, and Cyril Close, TopX Roma, taking the bids. It was simulcast by AuctionsPlus.
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The story Yarrawonga soars to new breed record with Katmandu first appeared on Queensland Country Life.