Strong entries set to take part in annual Christmas Classic show and sale

The 2018 Christmas Classic at Thainstone, organised by Aberdeen & Northern Marts in conjunction with the Aberdeen Fatstock Association, will take place November 26 - 27. Sponsored by NorthLink Ferries, this year’s Christmas Classic will showcase the very best prime and pedigree livestock in the North and North East over the two days of shows and sales, including the Rising Stars Exhibition calf show.

The annual show and sale will feature 60 prime cattle; the haltered section will be judged by Hugh Black of Hugh Black & Sons, Lanark, and Murray Lauchlan, David Comrie & Son, Comrie, with the unhaltered section judged by John McIntosh, Goval, Dyce. The 150 prime lambs will have Louise Forsyth, WTS Forsyth & Sons Butchers, Peebles and Ben Wight, Midlock, Biggar oversee the judging.

The young farmers section of haltered and unhaltered cattle and sheep will take place on Monday evening, which Guthrie Batchelor, Fleming Butchers, Angus will be judging.

Monday’s schedule of events will be concluded with the Rising Stars Exhibition calf show, an event that highlights the very best future exhibitors for the upcoming 2019 show season. The Rising Stars show will be judged by Stuart Hunter, West Cairnhill, Culsalmond.

Prime and cull livestock manager Tim McDonald, said: “We are pleased to offer a high-standard of prime cattle and sheep entries at this year’s Christmas Classic. I am honoured to be leading the prime cattle section and delighted with the entry of stock for the event. We look forward to welcoming buyers and sellers from across Scotland to Thainstone for this fantastic show and sale.”

The pedigree female sheep category will see an outstanding selection of top-quality animals, with 230 pedigree female sheep comprising of 102 Texel, 65 Suffolk, 30 Beltex, 16 Charollais, 11 Blue Texel and six Berrichon. Pedigree sheep will be showcased and judged beginning at 2:00 PM on Monday, November 26, with the sale commencing at 4:00 PM.

The pedigree sheep will see an excellent line-up of experienced and reputable judges, led by Robin Orr, Halbeath Farm, Dunfermline for Texels. Suffolks will be judged by Iain Bissett, Mariain, Evanton, and Beltex will be judged by Gordon Carroll, Edendiack, Huntly.

Deputy head of livestock Colin Slessor, said: “This year’s Christmas Classic promises to showcase yet another excellent, high-quality entry of pedigree sheep across all breeds. We are excited to build on last year’s highly successful event, which saw a new record price of 4,500gns achieved for the 2017 champion Texel exhibited by R H Wilson.”

This year’s show and sale of pedigree bulls will see seven Limousin, seven Charolais, nine Simmental, four Aberdeen Angus, two Salers and two pedigree Angus females. Mr Colin Smith, Towiemore, Keith will oversee the judging of this section.

The Aberdeen Christmas Classic – sponsored by NorthLink Ferries – is well-established in the agricultural calendar as one of the UK’s most prestigious annual shows and sales of prime cattle and sheep; pedigree female sheep; pedigree beef bulls; and the Rising Stars calf show with £16,000 of prize money and a range of trophies together with commemorative quaichs for leading prize winners and judges.

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