Friday, August 12, 2011

Market Competition - 1st day - County Fair 2011

We arrived early Thursday morning. The kids washed their lambs again then put covers on them (I don't think I have a picture of those). They always pick a silly name for their 4-H group. This year it is Bottles Baas and Boots. There are 4 families in our group and some of them wear cowboy boots, we wear snow boots, some of the lambs were bottle fed after being weened and they all BAAA like crazy. Perfect name!

Today is the Market Competitions. This is where each lamb is evaluated for its meat, bone structure, fat and especially muscle. Then the kids are placed in line from best to least in quality. Each child has trained for months to handle their lamb well enough to show off its best features. The kids need to set their lamb up so that it flexes its muscles when the judge feels it and it doesn't get too spooked. Lambs are unpredictable but if you have trained well then whatever happens you are ready and can get the lamb back into its place and looking good even after it might have got away. They set the lamb up so it is standing square so that from a distance they look big in the backside and lean through the middle. No hunched up backs or saggy backs. This takes constant attention and you need to watch the judge at all times, never getting between him and the lamb.

Peter and Lucy's lambs both weigh 124 lbs. Ideal! So they are both in the Market class together. The lamb is being evaluated not the child.

They both made it into the top 6 of their class, this puts them earlier for the auction then later. Great Job!

Susan's lamb Dandy thought he was a race horse! Here he is calmly waiting to enter the arena but when the gate was open he took off and ran around like a crazy lamb until he was caught and Susan caught up. Everything went smooth after that.

Her lamb was placed in the 6th spot. It weighs 130 exactly. There are about 12-15 in each class in the ring at one time.
She was nervous but helped her lamb shine!

They were really glad to have this first day over with.

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