Red Poll Beef Catle

Australian Red Poll Cattle Breeders Inc."

Victorian Region

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Red Poll wins Champion Heavy Domestic Carcase at Royal Melbourne

Congratulations to the Johnson family who exhibited the champion heavy domestic carcase at Royal Melbourne show. Sire: Lynbarry Superfluous, Dam: Lynbarry Annlex, 87.990 points.

An Almora trifecta !

Merle Hipwell with some of Almora's winning steers.

Once, twice, three times a winner

  Age Live wt P8 Fat Rib Fat Eye Muscle
Steer 1 17 months 476kg 8mm 7mm 84 sq cm
Steer 2 14 months 452kg 9mm 8mm 87 sq cm
Steer 3 14 months 391kg 5mm 5mm 72 sq cm
* Steer 3 was a twin. His brother came third in the lighter weight class.

Hipwell and Halliday's Almora Red Poll Stud in northern Victoria almost brought off a remarkable clean sweep in the two classes of the 2005 Elmore Beef Expo carcase competition.

Almora entered five steers in the two classes of the competition and came away with five of the six placings on offer.

The stud, run by Merle Hipwell and nephew Greg Halliday with Merle's sister Olive as book-keeper, came first, second and third on the hoof and on the hook in the 221kg to 260kg dressed weight class. The stud's remaining two steers, entered in the 180kg to 220kg class, came second and third in the carcase section.

"I thought it was pretty good," Merle Hipwell told us, "because they looked beautiful steers. They were the best we've seen for some while, our steers."

Almora runs around 90 breeders and is not new to carcase competition victories. "Over the years we've always had some success in carcase competitions, not for a few years, but down in the Melbourne show mainly."

Unfortunately, detailed results of the Elmore Beef Expo carcase competition have been lost, according to organisers of the expo. But the Hipwell and Halliday partnership should have no problem remembering this remarkable victory for many years to come.


A cross to bear in mind.

The little bloke pictured at right is proof positive of the fact Red Poll cattle are ideal for use in all kinds of crossbreeding operations.

Bred by Ian and Jill Coghlan's Eurimbla stud (the first calf from a heifer bred by embryo transfer), the Angus-Red Poll cross steer came third in the heavy domestic category of the 2005 Royal Melbourne Show Carcase Competition.

The steer, IJC Underbar, pictured at six months of age last November, was on loan to St Paul's College, Walla Walla (40km north of Albury), which entered him in the competition. Underbar scored extremely well, with a P8 of 10mm and eye muscle area of 84 sq cm.

He was less than two points shy of the Champion Heavyweight Domestic Carcase and less than half a point behind the second-placed beast.

Interestingly, all three place-getters were first cross animals.


Meat miscalculation

A team of three Red Poll steers took third place in the prestigious Borthwick Trophy, part of the 2005 Royal Melbourne Show Carcase Competition.

The three purebred Red Poll steers, supplied by Oakwood, Red Cactus and Redward studs, were just squeezed out by Charolais and Murray Grey teams in the competition.

Again, judging of the live animals underestimated the Red Polls' final carcase qualities. We don't want to harp here, judging of live animals is, after all, subjective and prone to human foible. But the Red Poll animals were judged second-last of the nine breeds involved in the live section, yet gained more points for their carcases than anyone else, including the ultimate first and second places.

In other words, dispensing with the live results would have seen the Red Polls in front with 228.913 points, Murray Greys second on 228.681 points and Charolais third on 225.809.

That's good enough for us to hail them as champions of a different sort.


Adelaide Show - 2004 Led Steer Competition

After mediocre results in the on hoof judging ( Oakwood , a third and Burra School (Moyle Park) , a fifth). The Red Polls again proved their worth in the carcase results.

We (red polls) were successful in winning the O'Conner Cup teams event, the three steers were :

Maleer Tasty Tom, exhibited and bred by JF, VE and CJ Malone.
Gum Hill Roger, exhibited by Cummins Area School, bred by IJ and JA Rogers.
Oakwood Cougar, exhibited by Kadina High School, bred by RM Wilson and Son.

Wilson's Red Polls won the Reserve Champion Domestic Carcase, with Oakwood Gladiator, scoring 80 points, 1 point behind the Grand Champion.

The breed also achieved a second place, Kadina High School and a sixth place, Faith Lutheran School in the schools domestic steer class with 33 entries. Burra Community School was placed fourth in the schools export steer class with 67 entries.

Every Red Poll steer scored more points as a carcase than the Domestic on hoof Champion (Murray Grey).

Breed averages Points Range No. of steers
Red Poll 60-80, ave. 69.16 12 steers
Angus 45-80, ave. 64.57 19
Poll Hereford 38-78 ave, 62.26 19
Murray Grey 49-81 ave, 66.69 23
Shorthorn 44-77 ave, 63.60 15
Red Angus 48-73 ave, 63.36 11

It is most interesting to note that Red Polls very rarely have really low scoring carcases, always consistent.

Peter Wilson said "We were ecstatic about the O'Conner Cup result", our win in the O'Conner stopped the Shorthorns getting three in a row and claiming the Trophy. A breed needs 3 wins in succession or 5 wins total to win the cup. We now have 3 wins ( since 1995) two more to win it outright!

25th Whittlesea Hoof and Hook Competition

2003 was the Silver Anniversary of the Whittlesea Society's Beef Hoof and Hook Competition. There were 47 entries and the carcases were judged after slaughter at Belandra Abattoirs at Altona before being purchased by GJ Coles. Carcases were then analysed for the same range of characteristics as used at Melbourne RAS, so assessment of Market Specifications (15 points), Saleable Meat Yield (40 points) and Eating Quality (45 points) were carried out. Of the two Classes - Light Domestic (160-220 Kg HS Carcase Weight) and Heavy Domestic - (221-260 Kg ), the Light Domestic providing the highest scoring beasts.

A steer entered by Barry and Lynette Johnson, of Kinglake Central was declared the Grand Champion Carcase for 2003 and Winner of the Bruce Lloyd Memorial Shield and $500. The pure-bred Red Poll steer, sired by Lynbarry Superfluous, scored 91.3 out of a possible 100 points and scored three points higher than the Grand Champion Steer at the Melbourne Show.


Royal Melbourne Show 2001
Exhibitor: Northern Melbourne TAFE, Epping Vic.
Class 2: Vealer / Yearling
HSCW 221-260 kg
P8 fat 6-12mm Body #238
Breeding RP Tag #60
Live weight: 448kg
HSCW: 261kg
Dressing 53%
Item Measure Points
Min Max
Weight Suitability 0 -5 0
P8 fat depth 7mm 10 10
Fat Colour Chip 1 5 5
Eye Muscle Area 88 sq cm 25 23.1
Rib Fat Depth 6mm 15 15
pH 5.5 10 10
Meat Colour Chip 1C 5 5
Ossification (WAM) 110 10 9.2
Bos Indicus Content 0% 5 5
Marbling 0.9 5 0
Fat Distribution   10 7
Total Score 100 89.3

  Champion Carcase Domestic &
Grand Champion Carcase
Red Cactus Stud Northern Melbourne Institute of Tafe  
  Champion Domestic Steer #33 Red Poll R M Wilson & Son  
  Reserve Champion Domestic Steer #45 Red Poll Burra Community School  
  3rd Place Domestic Steer #56 Red Poll Eastern Fleurieu School  
  4th Place (equal) Domestic Steer #25 Red Poll Moyle Park Red Poll Stud  

After taking 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and equal 4th place at Adelaide show this year in a field of 45 entries, Red Poll has again taken 1st prize at Royal Melbourne show.

Winning the Grand Champion Carcase Competition at the 2001 Melbourne Show was a real thrill for Northern Melbourne Institute of TAFE (NMIT). Top honors were received with a locally bred Red Poll Steer prepared by one of NMIT's students.

Nicknamed "Cactus" by his handler, Hannah Horman, the red steer amassed an impressive 89.3 points for its meat quality, placing it ahead of 90 other entries.

Hannah Horman, who is completing her first year of a Diploma of Agriculture at the Yan Yean based TAFE farm, was pleased with the win.

Hannah Horman

"We knew Cactus had a fantastic eye muscle area, as NMIT scans all its steers in the weeks leading up to the Show. We didn't do so well in the ring, but it's the carcase results that really matter," said Hannah.

NMIT has an enviable reputation in the Melbourne competition, which requires competitors to parade cattle in the show ring for judging, before the animals are slaughtered for carcase assessment.

The award is particularly satisfying for Arthurs Creek Red Poll breeder, Ross Draper, who's Red Cactus Stud has been a long time supporter of the TAFE agriculture program. Mr Draper, who also runs a livestock transport business, delivered all of the Institute's 12 steers to the show grounds for judging.

The winning steer had been in the school's feedlot for nine weeks, weighed 448kg live, and dressed out at 58.3 per cent for a carcase weight of 261kg. It earned full marks for P8 fat (7mm), fat colour, meat pH and meat colour.

NMIT also received a boost to its own cattle breeding program, taking out the award for highest scoring carcase bred and prepared by a school. The 14-month-old Angus steer "Ringo" was bred at Institute's Yan Yean farm, sired by Gunbar bull, Tennyson.

In addition to steers selected from NMIT's own Angus herd, several local producers enter animals in the NMIT program, to see how they perform as a carcase. Steers are fed a high growth ration and weighed regularly to maximise meat production.

The Melbourne Show competition is a highlight in the school calendar for NMIT students. Students select an animal to feed and train over many months, as part of their agriculture qualification.

Most students agree that the worst part of the competition is seeing their animals loaded onto trucks for their journey to the abattoir. This year a "Save Eimo" campaign was being hatched by some students for one particularly friendly animal.

For further information about NMIT courses phone 03-9269 1042.

Success at Paddock to Palate competitions

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Page last updated:  December 11th, 2006