The North of Fife Foal Show Society celebrated its centenary show in style with a quality turnout of Clydesdales at Highfield at Howe.
The addition of ridden and driving classes heightened the event’s atmosphere, with the centre’s facilities proving a big draw for competitors and spectators alike.
Fittingly, the trophy for the supreme horse was won locally by breed stalwart and former Clydesdale Horse Society president Ronnie Black, with his sons Mike and Pete, from nearby Newton of Collessie.
Their show stopper was the leading home-bred two-year-old filly Collessie Jennifer.
“This filly really is in top order, I just couldn’t look past her,” explained in-hand judge Paul Bedford, who travelled north to Fife to adjudicate from Thorpe Hill Farm, Whixley, in Yorkshire.
“She sets a tremendous standard in terms of the breed – she’s just so symmetrical and beautiful to look at. The overall picture that she presents is a delight.”
Only lightly shown this season, Jennifer stood supreme at both the National Stallion Show and the City of Aberdeen, but her reputation certainly precedes her after she lifted both the Cawdor Cup and Sanderson Trophy as the supreme of the Clydesdale breed at the Royal Highland Show in 2015.
Born from leading bloodlines, Jennifer’s dam Ormiston Mains Amber also won the Royal Highland Show as a two-year-old in 2011; her grand dam Ormiston Mains Amelie won the Highland two times (2008 and 2010); while her great grand dam Ormiston Mains Sophie was the first to set the precedent by achieving the Highland’s top accolade back in 2000.
If having three generations of Cawdor-winning females preceding her wasn’t enough of a good thing her sire, Redcastle Brelee Majestic, also lifted the Cawdor Cup as supreme male at the National Stallion Show in 2011.
This was the fourth time the Black Family has lifted the Blair Brothers trophy for the supreme animal at the North of Fife Foal Show since it was first awarded in 1988; and the second time it has been won by Jennifer – as she topped the show in 2014 during her own foal season.
“I don’t think many people could dispute she was the standout horse here on the day,” Mr Bedford added.
Taking the senior animals right through the card, Mr Bedford opted to bring the reserve senior champion Roughlands Alana, from Iain Johnston, of Kirkton Farm, Bothkennar, forward to stand as reserve show supreme.
“She’s a big, rangy and good moving animal,” commented Mr Bedford. “There’s certainly plenty to like about her.”
This May-born yearling, which was home-bred out of Barlauchlan Jubilee Princess, has similarly only been lightly shown this season, but stood reserve at Braco and breed champion at Kinross.
Alana was also the first of four animals to stand in the overall line-up that were all the progeny of Ian Young’s Cawdor stallion Arradoul Balvenie (by Arradoul Cardhu), which stands at stud at Collessie.
Whilst Mr Bedford regarded the quality at the top end of all of the foal classes was very good, he said they just couldn’t surpass these top two senior horses when it came to the best in show contest.
Nonetheless, he said three of his pick of the top four foals – the senior colt, senior filly and junior filly – were equally matched and very hard to separate.
“The top three really were tremendous quality,” said Mr Bedford.
Pulling Harry Emerson’s April-born Lutterington Harry forward to stand as foal supreme, Mr Bedford said: “This colt moves so well, but he also has a great width of foot and plenty of nice hair.”
Harry, which was home-bred bred out of Middlebank Anne, based at Collessie, had come to the show buoyed by recent supreme success at both Kilpatrick and Lanark foal shows and is another to be sired by Arradoul Balvenie.
His half-sibling Collessie Flash Girl, again by Balvenie, stood foal reserve for Charlotte Young and her father Jim, who came to the show from Hall Farm, in Ayr.
This March-born filly, out of Old Greenlaw Jura, won the filly foal class during the summer at the City of Aberdeen and similarly stood reserve overall foal to Harry at Lanark last week.
Although there was no ticket for a ‘second-reserve’ foal, Mr Bedford said this would have gone to Eric and Miranda Johnston’s Ord Tinkerbell by only the most narrow of margins.
Champion of the ridden entry, which was judged by Niki Pargeter, from Northallerton, was David Burnett’s mare Swordale Lady Luck, ridden by his sister Morag Snow, of Incharvie Equestrian, Kilconquhar.
Supreme: RH Black, Newton of Collessie, Ladybank, with Collessie Jennifer (by Redcastle Brelee Majestic). Reserve: Iain Johnston, Kirkton Farm, Bothkennar, with Roughlands Alana (by Arradoul Balvenie).
Overall foal: Harry Emerson, Weardale, Co Durham, with Lutterinton Harry (by Arradoul Balvenie). Reserve: Charlotte Young, Hall Farm, Ayr, with Collessie Flash Girl (by Arradoul Balvenie).
Senior colt: 1 Harry Emerson, with Lutterinton Harry; 2 Charlotte Young, with Doura King of the Ring (by Doura Kingmaker).
Junior colt: 1 RH Black, with Collessie Convoy (by Arradoul Balvenie); 2 Edith Gunn, Hawthorn House, East Calder, with Hawthorn Highwayman (by Millinshillhead Celebrity); 3 Jacqueline Tate, with Bandirran Flint (by Redcastle Brelee Majestic).
Confined colt: 1 Harry Emerson, with Lutterinton Harry; 2 RH Black, with Collessie Convoy.
Senior filly: 1 Charlotte Young, with Collessie Flash Girl; 2 Iain Johnston, with Roughlands Ziva (by Collessie Stepping Stone); 3 Mr and Mrs McIntyre, with Freezlund Miss Esmie.
Junior filly: 1 Eric Johnston, Highfield Circle, Muir of Ord, with Ord Tinkerbell (by Eskechraggan Ernest); 2 Kevin Wilson, Moray Place, Blackford, with Blueton Willow (by Doura Master Eddie); 3 Desi Hill, with Collessie Snowflake (by Collessie Stepping Stone).
Confined filly: 1 Desi Hill, with Collessie Snowflake.
Overall senior: RH Black, with Collessie Jennifer. Reserve: Iain Johnston, with Roughlands Alana.
Gelding: 1 Mr & Mrs McIntyre, Gillmill Cottage, Stewarton, with Bailey (by Collessie Sir Alex); 2 Miss S Gibb, Collessie Full Monty (by Collessie Stepping Stone); 3 Benny Duncan, Rose Cottage, Balmalcolm, with Davie (by Great American Ben Franklin).
Mare: 1 Scott Greenhill, Leuchars Lodge, with Macfin Ruby (by Doura High Spirit); 2 Ailsa Clarke, Blairmore Farm, Crieff, with Lara (by Great American GW Carver); 3 Dave Young, Finmount, Kinglassie, with Finmount Ruby (by Mollinhillhead Celebrity).
Two-year-old colt or gelding: 1 Alan Campbell, Netherwood Cottage, Kilmacolm, with Pacemuir Angus (by Dillars Scottie Boy).
Two-year-old filly: 1 RH Black, with Collessie Jennifer; 2 S Campbell and A Merchant, Laurencekirk, with Rolling Thunder Maggie May (by Singlie Storm); 3 Scott Greenhill, with Lodge Lexi (by Glebeview Sir Charles).
Yearling colt or gelding: 1 Desi Hill, with Collessie Lodestone (by Collessie Stepping Stone); 2 Gillian Prentice, with Collessie Defender (by Collessie Stepping Stone); 3 Rachel Mangto, with Bogton Harris (by Bogton Renown).
Yearling filly: 1 Iain Johnston, Kirkton Farm, Bothkennar, with Roughlands Alana (by Arradoul Balvenie); 2 Janet Gray, Cameron Knowe, Philipstoun, with Fawnspark Elizabeth (by Ingliston Perfect); 3 Agnes Jackson, Thankerton Mill, Biggar, with Boat Lady Victoria (by Dillars Top Gun).
HHT Singles: 1 Benny Duncan; 2 Margo McIntyre.
HHT Ladies cart: 1 Helen Carr; 2 Benny Duncan; 3 Margo McIntyre.
HHT Pairs: Margo McIntyre; Benny Duncan.
HHT Cone Driving: 1 Benny Duncan; 2 Margo McIntyre.
Ridden: 1 David Burnett, with Swordale Lady Luck; 2 Charis Gray, with Bogton Commander; 3 Laura Henry, with Collessie Pride.
Young handler: 1 Blythe Sinclair.
Young handlers (senior): 1 Kiera Gowans; 2 Abby Slaven; 3 Rebecca Donald.