WHILE the Tullamore Show has expanded beyond expectations since its inception, the undoubted stars of the show are still the livestock who will battle it out for top honours in the AIB National Livestock Show.
Painstaking preparations will have been put in by owners all across Ireland hoping that their animal will be named the pick of the bunch at the Show this Sunday.
As always there will be a host of prizes handed out ranging from the small to the far more prestigious.
There is an international flavour in the Pedigree Cattle section, with no less than 11 continental breeds; Simmental, Charolais, Limousin, Belgian Blue, Angus, Hereford, Salers, Aubrac, Blond d’Aquitaine, Shorthorn and Parthenaise.
There are a total of 148 classes in this, the biggest cattle section in the AIB National Livestock Show.
There promises to be keen competition from the top breeders in the country, for the new specially commissioned Gold Medal and the coveted AIB National Livestock Show rosette.
The programme in the Pedigree Beef section also incorporates the National Show for the Limousin and Hereford Societies.
The standard and quality of animals exhibiting in the AIB National Livestock Show is a sight to behold. Classification of livestock includes the introduction of weight denominated classes.
A number of new classes for Commerical Cattle has also been introduced. The prize fund is very attractive this year with an almost 50% increase since last year.
Young people are not forgotten, with a class especially for those aged between 12 to 16 years, to encourage them to get involved too. This is a great platform to showcase and reward the talent of our young competitors with the effort they put in.
Two rings will operate for part of the day with two judges present.
The Dairy section is a key component in the AIB National Livestock Show. There are four breds catered for within the Dairy Cattle section; Pure Fresian, Jersey, Dairy Shorthorn, and The Holstein Friesian.
This is the first year for the Pure Fresian classes in our Show. Exhibitors are sure to find something to catch their attraction with these beautiful breeds on exhibition.
Some of these classes have a big prize fund of €2,500 for the winning animals, such as the Senior Holstein Cow in Milk. Don’t forget a certificate of registration is required for all Pedigree and Dairy Cattle, and please remember to bring it along on show day.
To help local breeders we have a confined section where the specific classes are limited to Laois, Offaly and Westmeath breeders. International Judges will be involved in the judging of animals presented.
Last but certainly not least in the final area of the AIB National Livestock, the Sheep section includes 67 pedigree and 10 commercial classes, covering the Texel, Vendeen, Suffolk, Charollais, Rouge De L’Ouest, Galway, Beltex, Lleyn, Jacob, Belclare, Zwartbles, and Border Leicester breeds.
Two new competitions have been continued on this year for young people, who wish to compete for the Tullamore Show Young Shepherd of the year or the Junior Sheep Stockperson of the AIB National Livestock Show.
There is a class for everyone. Two new breeds have been introduced in the Pedigree sheep section; Zwartbles and Border.