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Thomas family sweeps up with three top honours at Llandyfaelog Show

Carmarthenshire’s Llandyfaelog Show is unique in staging an end of season ‘champion of champions’ spectacular. Barry Alston reports from West Wales.
Champion of champions cow, Gatrog Sarge Lavender
Champion of champions cow, Gatrog Sarge Lavender

Victory in three of the five main ‘champion of champions’ awards on offer turned Saturday’s Llandyfaelog Show into a day to remember for Gelligatrog’s Thomas family from Pontantwn, Kidwelly.


Not only did Elwyn and Cheryl Thomas take both of the top Holstein cow and heifer titles, but their daughter Anwen finished out in front of the overall heifer line-up for coloured breeds.


Then, for good measure, the 12-year-old went home with the young handler championship.


In the 25 years since the competition to find the best of the season’s breed champions began, the head-to-head challenges have seen some of the UK’s leading animals take pride of place.


This year was no exception, with the marathon four-hour judging stint set for the Monmouthshire-based Sahara herd’s David Jones far from being an easy task.


He said: “It has been a privilege to judge such quality line-ups.”


Before him were breed leaders drawn from shows across Wales, but it was to his choice from earlier in the day in the Llandyfaelog classes his main cow and heifer titles went.


Out in front for the top black and white rosette for the second year running, was the Thomas’ home-bred, widely-won fourth-calver, Gatrog Sarge Lavender, with another home-bred milker, Feithy Bolton Glenys, from Eifion and Mary Jones and sons, Wyn and Rhys, Cilfeithy, Kidwelly, in reserve.

Gatrog was in the limelight again for the Holstein heifer championship, with Normead Baxter Kansas, which calved its first back in May, leading the way.


The Wilson family and their Cardigan-based Tregibby herd had a fairly fruitful day as well, taking reserve Holstein heifer championship, with Maplerose Jordan Frantoosh, and third place for the cow title with home-bred Tregibby Beacon Rosina.


They were also at the top of the cow championship for coloured breeds with their Jersey milker, Tregibby Panama Tequila, closely followed by Anwen Thomas and her Jersey milker, Fourcrosses Pineapple.


The two-year-old was back in the ring for the coloured breed heifer parade, this time pushing another Wilson Jersey, Bluegrass Tequila Blusher, into number two.


Tregibby, however, finished at the head of the junior championship turn-out for under two-year-old heifers, with Woodmarsh Doorman Zandra 3.

Inter-breed and commercial pair champions, Limousin-British blue heifers

Llandyfaelog also stages beef and sheep inter-breed championships. The three-year-old home-bred Limousin cow, Deri Hot Chocolate, from Terry and Dawn Griffiths, Llangain, Carmarthen, took the individual honours, as commercials from Eddie Morgan, Cilycwm, Llandovery, headed up the group of three parade and two Limousin-British Blue heifers from Dai Thomas, Llanwnnen, Lampeter, led the pairs.

Inter-breed sheep and Beltex champion

In the sheeprings, both the overall and group of three honours went to home-bred Beltex entries from Adrian and Wendy Evans, who keep the Bancycrwys flock at Farmers, near Lampeter.


Runner-up for the individual award was a North Country Cheviot ewe from Julie Earle, Penybont, Carmarthen.


Leading the pigs was a Welsh sow from Llannon exhibitors Gerallt and Joyce Owens and their son Llr, with Sam Meredith, a relative newcomer to showing pigs, taking reserve with his Welsh entries.


Welsh champion of champions


Holstein (D. Jones, Wilcrick, Monmouth) Cow: 1, E. and C. Thomas, Gatrog Sarge Lavender; 2, E.R. and M.E. Jones and Sons, Feithy Bolton Glenys; 3, A.H. Wilson and Son, Tregibby Beacon Rosina; 4, N. and R. Roberts, Cramar J Misha; 5, E. and C. Thomas, Cramar Sid Cherry; 6, N. and R. Roberts, Wilsbro Shottle Amanda. Heifer, 1, E. and C. Thomas, Normead Baxter Kansas; 2, A.H. Wilson and Son, Maplerose Jordan Frantoosh. Junior, 1, A.H. Wilson and Son, Woodmarsh Doorman Zandra; 2, M. and C. Davies, Sterndale Dorcy Ghost; 3, N. and R. Roberts, Dulais Saloon Roxy; 4, G. Thomas, Cilgwyn Goldchip May.


Any other breed (D. Jones) Cow, 1, A.H. Wilson and Son, Tregibby Panama Tequila (Jersey); 2, A. Thomas, Fourcrosses Pineapple (Jersey); 3, Nicel Jerseys, Nicel Tonic Delight (Jersey); 4, Nicel Jerseys, Nicel Iatola Delight (Jersey). Heifer, 1, A. Thomas, Fourcrosses Pineapple (Jersey); 2, A.H. Wilson and Son, Bluegrass Tequila Blusher (Jersey); 3, A.H. Wilson and Son, Bluegrass Tequila Hula-Hoop (Jersey); 4, Nicel Jerseys, Salfach Exactly Poppy (Jersey); 5, I. Harries, Gwenlais GG Florence (Jersey).






Holstein (D. Jones) Supreme and female, E. and C. Thomas, Gatrog Sarge Lavender; reserve sup., and res., female, E. and C. Thomas, Noremead Baxter Kansas.


Any other dairy breed (D. Jones) Sup. and fem., A.H. Wilson and Son, Tregibby Panama Tequila (Jersey); res. sup. and res. fem., A. Thomas, Fourcrosses Pineapple (Jersey).






Inter-breed (A. Thomas, Carmarthen) Home-bred and female, T.B. and C.D. Griffiths, Deri Hot Chocolate (Limousin). Group of three, sup., E. Morgan (Commercial); res. sup., G. and L. Thomas (Limousin); pair, sup., D. Thomas (Commercial) res. sup., T.B. and C.D. Griffiths (Limousin).


Limousin (S. Thomas, Llanpumpsaint) Sup. and fem., T.B. and C.D. Griffiths, Deri Hot Chocolate; res. sup. and male, T.B. and C.D. Griffiths, Deri Jiffy.


Hereford (J. Evans, Haverfordwest) Sup. and fem., A. John, Lax Regina 15; res. sup. and male, W. Griffiths, Penrhiwgoch Ll Achieve Progress.


British Blue (A. Thomas) Sup. and fem., D. Jones and I. Davies, Cromwell Indigo; res. sup. and male, D. Jones and I. Davies, Lone Tree Hicky.


Welsh Black (G. Thomas, Llanddeusant) Sup. and fem., H. Evans, Alwen Jan 32.


Commercial beef (A. Thomas) Sup., D. Thomas (Limousin cross British Blue heifer); res. sup., D. Thomas (Limousin cross British Blue heifer).


Young handler (J. Evans, Llawhaden) Sup., Anwen Thomas; res., Ioan Harries.






Inter-breed (E. Hughes, Llangadog) Sup. and fem., A.J.P. and W. Evans (Beltex); res. sup. and res. fem., K. and J. Earle (North Country Cheviot); group of three, A.J.P. and W. Evans (Beltex); res. sup., S. Thomas (Suffolk).


Mountain breeds (G. Thomas) Sup. and fem., K. and J. Earle (North Country Cheviot); res. sup. and res. fem., A. Hemmings (Brecknock Hill Cheviot).


Suffolk (C. Davies, Llangadog) Sup. and male, T. and H. Griffiths; res. sup. and fem., J. and L. Griffiths.


Any other lowland breed (C. Davies) Sup. and male, Richards Family (Bluefaced Leicester) res. sup. and res. male, D.S. and S.L. Brigginshaw (Charollais).


Texel (G. Williams, Gwynfe) Sup. and fem., N. Griffiths; res. sup. and res. fem., D. Evans.


Beulah Speckled Face (D. Davies, Llanwrda) Sup. and male, Richards Family; res. sup. and res. male, Richards Family.


Balwen (B. Eagles, Meidrim) Sup. and male, Evans Family; res. sup. and fem., Evans family.


Welsh Badger Faced (B. Eagles) Sup. and fem., S. Jeffries; res. sup. and male, A. Hemmings.


Beltex (G. Williams) Sup. and fem., A.J.P. and W. Evans; res. sup. and res. fem., A.J.P. and W. Evans.


Cross-bred (G. Rees, Llanelli) Sup. and fem., T. Thomas (Texel cross Lleyn).


Butchers lambs (G. Rees) Lighter than 38kg, G. Davies; res., W. Williams; heavier than 38kg: R. Davies; res., W. Williams.


Young handler (E. Hughes) Sup., Fflur Richards; res. T. Griffiths.





Inter-breed (A. Jenkins, Kidwelly) Sup., G., J and L. Owens (Welsh); res. sup., S. Meredith (Welsh).

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