THIS year's Sydney Royal Easter Show will be one to remember for Wollun Merino stud Shalimar Park thanks to an outstanding performance by one of its ewes.
The August-shorn two-tooth ewe was a stand out of the ultrafine class, which had 38 exhibits, taking out the grand champion ewe ahead of Grathyln in reserve, before going on to win the Tom Culley award for junior Merino exhibit and being named supreme ewe.
Shalimar Park's Jack Carlon said the ewe, tag M28636, boasted a 15.1 micron fibre diametre, a 3.5 standard deviation and a 99.9 per cent comfort factor.
"For her age, her length of staple and quality of staple is exactly what you would expect out of a pure ultrafine type sheep," Mr Carlon said.
"Her size was also another major factor that helped her along as well I think, so overall, she had a lot of things going for her.
"She is out of a home-bred ram, which goes back to the Nerstane 9-10 sires, so that is where I think she gets that really punchy style of staple."
Mr Carlon said the stud's performance at the Royal had capped off a terrific year so far for the operation.
"We've had an extremely good year this year with our sale going as well as it did with a full clearance, coupled with great seasonal conditions," he said.
"To then come down to Sydney, where getting one broad ribbon is good enough, but to walk away with the Tom Culley and the supreme ewe is just amazing."
During judging of the supreme ewe judge Geoff Rayner said said he was very impressed with her style.
"We thought she was the complete ewe for production," Mr Raynor said.
"Her outlook is what we look for in a stud-Merino ewe, she has a great topline, is full underneath, carrying wool right to her toes, she is a very correct young ewe and will be a very good breeder."
The ram competition in the ultrafine class was equally impressive with judge Clive Pearson, Glenbrook, Armidale, awarding the broad ribbon to Westvale, Wollun, ahead of Greenland, Bungarby.
Westvale stud principal Leo Blanch said the grand champion ram, tag M28805, boasted a 16.9 MF, a 2.7 SD, a 16pc CV and 99.8pc CF.
"I think the fact he is so complete, balanced and has coverage and quality right to his toes helped him stand out," Mr Blanch said.
"He was very well prepared thanks to the great work from an old overseer of mine coming in to help me when I lost the overseer I had at the time."
Mr Blanch said the stud had big plans for the ram going forward.
"We're very fortunate because two weeks ago we did an artificial insemination program and we asked the technician to see if he'd produce semen," he said.
"Luckily enough he did produce semen so we've artificial inseminated some ewes with him and now we're a year ahead with him than we thought we'd be.
"He'll be a sire at home and it just means next spring we'll have lambs from him rather than the year after."
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