Leewang ewes - champions of Central Western Merino ewe competition

James and Elise Nixon, Leewan, Yarrabandai, with their children, Maggie, Henry and Elkie, with their champion maiden Merino ewes.
James and Elise Nixon, Leewan, Yarrabandai, with their children, Maggie, Henry and Elkie, with their champion maiden Merino ewes.

The champion flock of maiden ewes from the three Central West Merino ewe competitions came from the Nixon family's Leewang commercial flock at Yarrabandai.

The Central and Western ewe competition puts first place getters of the Ted Little (Trundle), Don Brown (Condobolin) and Doug Bicket (Parkes) Memorial Competitions head-to-head, as well as the second placed teams and judged by breeders from outside the regions.

RUNNER_UP. The Watt family's Allambie flock, Alectown on Darriwell blood was placed second in the Central Western Merino Ewe Competition. Pictured with their maiden ewes are Sarah Watt with classer Russell Jones, Ben and Robert Watt with Lachlan, Tristan and Adelaide Watt.

RUNNER_UP. The Watt family's Allambie flock, Alectown on Darriwell blood was placed second in the Central Western Merino Ewe Competition. Pictured with their maiden ewes are Sarah Watt with classer Russell Jones, Ben and Robert Watt with Lachlan, Tristan and Adelaide Watt.

This year both judges came from the Monaro, James Barron, Adina stud, Peak View, and Greg Alcock, Greenland stud, Nimmitabel, who both said they could see the difference in the sheep from the three regions.

However, both agreed on the winning flock from James and Elise Nixon, Leewang, Yarrabandai, whose Bundemar blood ewes classed by Tom Kirk, now of Baldry, took their eyes for champions due to their nourishment of wools.

Mr Barron said the Leewang ewes were well nourished, very square on their feet and had good wool and plenty of it.

"The main thing that grabbed us was the nourishment in the wool; they have a really good surface on them," he said.

Judges from the Monaro, Greg Alcock, Greenland stud, Nimmitabel, and James Barron, Adina stud, Peak View.

Judges from the Monaro, Greg Alcock, Greenland stud, Nimmitabel, and James Barron, Adina stud, Peak View.

Mr Alcock commented that they may have been younger than the other teams, but they were growing very well nourished wools.

"All well-grown for their age with good length and shape with good lock structure, a pretty even team," said Mr Alcock.

The Nixon family flock gained the hat-trick - three wins in three years - in the Ted Little Memorial.

James' parents, Grant and Dominique, first won the competition's hat-trick in 2000, 2001 and 2002.

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The winner of the second-place teams was the Allambie flock of the Watt family, Alectown, of Darriwell blood and classed by Russell Jones.

The judges said the winner of the second placed teams could have gone either way.

Mr Barron said the Allambie ewes were heavy wool cutters and Mr Alcock added the ewes had good wool and good length of body.

"Overall, each flock was a winner in its own right, but our job was to select what we thought the best, and coming from the Monaro and breeding different types, both of us chose these two as the better flocks in our eyes," Mr Alcock said.

The contest was made up by the Hood family's Wendouree flock, Parkes; the Karu flock of the Crouch family, Condobolin and the Nixon family from Trundle.

Runner-up flocks included Mat and Korina Aveyard's Plevna West flock, Trundle; Menzies family at Moonbah, Condobolin and the Watt family from Allambie, Parkes.

Both judges agreed the concept created extra interest in the Merino breed.

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