`An honour’ to win mentor’s trophy

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When Peter Christie won the Mervyn Ladbrook Memorial Trophy with a ram from the Hinerua Perendale Stud, it was a fitting tribute to both men.
The trophy was awarded at the South Island Stud Ram Fair in Gore recently. The trophy was donated by the late Mr Ladbrook’s wife, Edith.
The trophy had special meaning for Mr Christie.
“I took over Mervyn Ladbrook’s property and stud at Greenvale. He was my mentor,” Mr Christie said.
“It’s an honour to win it.”
The trophy came with its own book that traced the early history of the stud and gave information on winners, he said.
The perendale ram that secured the title for Mr Christie is Number 523/16 Hinerua.
“He’s a big ram and he had a great presence,” he said.
“You’d walk into the pen and he caught your eye.”
The ram had very good conformation and was true to the breed, he said.
The Gore farmer and his partner, Julie Wilson, run a farming venture that is home to two perendale studs.
Mrs Wilson’s stud is called
St Helens.
“We’ve kept our studs separate but we farm together,” Mrs Wilson said.
The Hinerua stud consists of 220 stud ewes and St Helens has 120.
The couple also winter 100 R1s and 100 R2s.
“We do dairy grazing for a local farmer,” he said.
The ewe hoggets were wintered off farm but the ram hoggets were kept at home.
The ram lambs were sold each year as two-tooths and the couple had a list of regular clients.
The couple liked the breed for several reasons.
Perendale ewes were easy lambers and good mothers, and had the ability to forage for food in tough conditions.
And they were also good-looking sheep, he said.
Farming perendales was a tradition in Mr Christie’s family – his father farmed the breed.
The couple also bred Texel perendale crosses, which were all recorded, and there was good demand for the progeny. They had 60 ewes that were mated to Texel rams.
This cross produced a good commercial lamb.