Trip to Holstein Friesian champs

Black & White Show Trip winner Kimberley Simmons shows Belbrook US Seisme-RED-ET VG86, which won...
Black & White Show Trip winner Kimberley Simmons shows Belbrook US Seisme-RED-ET VG86, which won the South Island Intermediate Champion Holstein at the Ellesmere Show last month.PHOTO: SUPPLIED
A prize of a trip for a young enthusiast to attend a Holstein Friesian championship encourages them to continue their passion beyond childhood, says winner Kimberley Simmons, of Southland.

Miss Simmons (17) won an annual competition to attend Holstein Friesian championships at Ellesmere A&P Show in Canterbury last month.

Holstein Friesian New Zealand runs the competition for the trip, as part of its Black & White Youth programme.

“Holstein Friesian NZ Black & White Youth encourages young people to get involved with their breed association and to continue with their passion beyond childhood, going on to breed good stock and show their cattle as adults,” Miss Simmons says.

Kimberley, a year 12 Menzies College pupil, lives on 60ha Lowburn and Brydale Studs in Southland with her family — mother Teena, father Sandy and brother Jack (22) — milking 170 cows, mostly Holstein Friesian.

She first showed her pet calf, age 4, and had since shown cattle across the South Island.

Each year, programme members, aged between 14 and 17, had a chance to win a trip to either of the Holstein Friesian championships in the South Island or North Island.

Holstein Friesian NZ organised her return travel and billeted her with local Holstein Friesian NZ members, the Wakelin family, of Belbrook Farming.

Kimberley spent three days with the Wakelins and helped them prepare for the show including washing and clipping their cows.

Robbie Wakelin said his family were impressed with Kimberley throughout her stay.

“She was a tremendous help and was a well-deserved recipient of the trip — she really got stuck in and did a good job.”

Kimberley said a highlight of the show was leading the Wakelin’s Jersey heifer, Belbrook Choice Lulu, and winning the title of South Island Junior Champion Jersey — the cow she led to win the handling section.

“Attending the show was awesome. I got to meet lots of new people and talk about all things cows, and it was cool seeing cattle of a high standard compete.”

Youth programmes helped keep breed associations ‘‘alive’’, she said.

She encouraged other Black & White Youth members to apply for opportunities offered by the association, particularly if they had limited experience in attending shows.

“It’s a great introduction to the showing circuit, and a good opportunity for a ‘newbie’ to meet people with similar interests.”

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