FRED Smyth of the Windyhill flock took the leading price at the recent Suffolk Sheep Society Northern Ireland Branch Premier Export Sale at Ballymena Mart.
The Limavady breeder topped the sale with his Frongoy Five Star sired ram being knocked down to Michael & Marie Jennings of the Ballygarris Flock, Co. Mayo for 2,800gns.
Brian McVicker, Bushmills paid 2,400gns for a Mullaghboy Goliath ram from the Claragh pen of James McCullough, Kilrea.
A shearling ram from Alastair Gault, Forkins flock, was knocked down to Robert Walker, Kicurley flock, Co. Limerick for 1,400gns.
Southern Ireland breeders were largely represented at the sale with a total of 16 lambs being sold to Southern breeders.
Commercial customers were also dominant at the Premier sale with some of the top price rams being sold to local and regional buyers giving them a healthy return in tight times.
Premier Export Sale averages were 780gns with a 79% clearance.
There were also some excellent top pen sale averages (three or more lambs sold):-
Stephen Sufferin averaging 1,156gns; Andrew Moses averaging 1,087gns; Alastair Barkley averaging 725gns; John Murnion averaging 550gns;
Norman Robinson averaging 541gns; Dennis Taylor averaging 538gns; Michael McNally averaging 500gns.
Leading prices at the sale:
n 2,800gns Fred Smyth sold to Michael & Marie Jennings, Co. Mayo;
n 2,400gns James McCullough sold to Brian McVicker, Co. Antrim;
n 1,800gns Michael Smyth sold to Jalex, Co. Antrim;
n 1,800gns Stephen Sufferin sold to Dennis Lynch & Sons, Co. Longford;
n 1,700gns Alastair Gault sold to James Cannon, Newtownstewart;
n 1,600gns Philip Gurney sold to John Hanly, Co. Tipperary;
n 1,500gns twice Stephen Sufferin sold to Susan O’Keeffe, Co. Cork & James Maybin, Co. Antrim;
n 1,400gns Alastair Gault sold to Robert Walker, Co. Limerick;
n 1,400gns Andrew Moses sold to Patrick Sharkey, Claudy;
n 1,300gns Andrew Moses sold to A Heffernan, Co. Kerry;
n 1,300gns Stephen Sufferin sold to Daniel McCann, Ballinmallard;
n 1,100gns Fred Smyth sold to G Thompson, Bushmills;
n 1,100gns Philip Gurney sold to Patrick Sharkey, Claudy;
n 1,000gns twice Stephen Sufferin sold to William Halligan, Co. Wicklow & SH Stewart, Co. Tyrone;
n 1,000gns Michael McNally sold to Thevenoux, France.
Thans go to sponsors Danske Bank for their continued support of the NI Branch of the Suffolk Sheep Society and to all advertisers in the Premier Sale catalogue.