Sponsors, Show Committee Members, Northern Ireland Limousin Club Committee & Irish Limousin Representatives at the launch of the All-Ireland competitions in front of the magnificent Castlewellan Castle
All roads lead to Castwellan Agricultural Show on Saturday 14th July 2007 for the new All Ireland Bull & Heifer Derby which is a much anticipated competition in Irish Limousin circles with the top pedigree Limousin cattle already being prepared for the qualifying events. The derby will be the first All Ireland competition of any breed since the re-introduction of cross border movement of livestock. The Derby will allow breeders (North & South) to compare their Limousin cattle when they compete for the title of All-Ireland Champion Bull or Heifer.
Some ten years ago tentative plans were made between the Irish Limousin Cattle Society and the N I Limousin Club to hold an All-Ireland event incorporating the best young Limousin bulls and heifers from both Regions in shows competitions to be dubbed “Derbies”. Unfortunately, because of major animal health problems at the time, it was not possible to proceed. However, the Derbies were incorporated into the Northern Ireland Shows calendar and have been successfully run by the Northern Ireland Limousin Club each year.
Arthur Malone (centre) of Castlewellan Show Committee giving tips to the two Presidents – John Gordon (Northern Ireland Limousin Club) & John Moroney (Irish Limousin Cattle Society)
It had always been the intention, given suitable conditions, to stage an All-Ireland event and, apparently, conditions now prevail that makes this a possibility and tentative plans have been made for the final to take place in what will be a Limousin extravaganza at Castlewellan Show on Saturday 14th July 2007. This will, of course, be subject to guidelines set by DARD and DAFF being met.
It could not be emphasised too strongly that this augers to be the Major Showpiece of the year and will be an attraction not only for Limousin breeders and their families but for everyone who enjoys the showing, the judging and the prize parades at country shows right across the country. While the final is scheduled for Castlewellan the qualifying takes in Southern Ireland take place at Athlone & Charleville shows while the qualifiers at Balmoral, Ballymena, Ballymoney, Lurgan, Armagh, Newry, Omagh for the Northern Ireland shows
Irish Limousin Representatives with sponsors at the launch
With the Limousin Breed now the acknowledged leaders in the Beef sector having 35% of the market share Northern Ireland and with the Irish Limousin Cattle Society having had a remarkable achievement recently with Limousin recorded as the No. 1 Suckler Cow the stage is now set for a competition which will further emphasise the “Best of the Best” in Ireland.
The All Ireland Derbies are supported with generous sponsorship by The Ulster Bank and IAWS.