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Luings on Fire at Castle Douglas
by Eilidh MacPherson
The Luing limelight was glowing with brilliant luminosity on the McNees of Woodend, Armadale, West Lothian at the recent Premier sale in Castle Douglas. Their position of first in the ring certainly did not hamper bidding as the ten Benhar in-calf heifers averaged £2373, with three selling to 2500gns.
Lots 2 and 3, Benhar Tulip J33 and Benhar Pansy J50, both sired by Luing Eclipse, sold as a pair to Paddy Crear, New Mains, Dunbar, for 2500gns, while Benhar Beauty, another Eclipse daughter headed south of the Border to D Stanners, Home Farm, Knowsley Park, Prescot, making up the trio.
Past Chairman, Neil McCorkindale, Ardencaple Farm, Scammadale, by Oban, who was splashing the cash, buying 16 heifers in total, purchased Benhar Poppy J42 for 2400gns. “I have total confidence in the Luing breed and have confidence in the beef industry,” commented Neil.
The champion pair, from the same sire made 2200gns, returned close to home to Messrs Calglen, Bridgegate, Balmuir, Bathgate.
Like a gripping novel, with a fantastic opening and a tremendous end, the McNees ended the day on a high, with the second last consignment of the sale through the ring – bull Benhar Kansas – being knocked down to Ted Fox of Eldsonburn, Kirknewton, Wooler, for 13000 gns. “The second youngest bull in the sale, weighing in at 840kg and measuring 56” at the shoulder with a good scrotal circumference of 42cm, this June 2008-born son of Dirnanean Geldof holder and out of a home-bred Luing Soldier sired dam came from a very strong line up of Benhar bulls,” reported Johnny Mackey, breed secretary.
Benhar Kyle, who was used in house as a youngster, sold to Steven Murray, Rockcliffe, for 6000gns, while Benhar Kite flew to new breeder Tom Wilson of Brampton, Cumbria at 5,000gns. The McNee family spent some of their booty securing College Kracker for 6,500gns from Ted Fox.
Dougie Helm of Haltree, Stow, Galashiels, who is building up a Luing herd, now numbering 30, bid 6000gns for Harehead Kojak, out of Professor Penny’s stable in the Lammermuirs. Dougie initially sourced ten cows from Mr MacGregor on the Isle of Kerrera.
Other notable bull transactions included; Harehead Kirk sold to D&A Barr of Milkieston, Peebles for 5,000gns and Luss Estates paid the same for Welbeck Kracker from Welbeck Scottish Farms, Caithness.
Selling at Castle Douglas for the first time, the Grahams of Craigdarroch, Sanquhar came top of the pops with a pair of red bulling heifers, out of Clunie Figo. Runners up in the annual Bank of Scotland sponsored heifer competition, judged by Messrs Cosgrave of Castle Luings, Co. Meath, they made 3000gns a piece – purchased by Messrs Burke of Stewarton Farm, Peebles. The Grahams had the highest average of the sale – £2,572 for 4 heifers.
The Luing natives from the Cadzow Brothers numbered 27 in total and averaged just under £2000. Four hit the 2200gns mark, while a pen of three headed back up to Argyll with Neil McCorkindale.
Keen bidding from the packed ringside kept Wallets Markets auctioneer – Robin Anderson – on his toes, but helped him to rattle through the sale catalogue in record time.