Wednesday 24 September 2014

Whalton Village show sheep racing

Saturday saw our annual outing to Whalton Village Show, this is always a busy one for us because not only do we have the alpacas and our knitwear I also race some of my pet sheep.  Team Barnacre Barnstormers has a reputation to uphold, we have won three of the four previous years so we have standards to keep!

This year we had three of the usual team, Mocha, she's back left, next to Ebony back right, then there's Mia who is closest to me as usual, so you can hardly see her and the big girl in the middle was new to sheep racing, she's Curly one of my new Wensleydales.

Having had a few practice goes it was clear that despite a huge height advantage Curly wasn't really made for sheep racing; but she was there now so no team changes could be made.

There are four heats then a final and it has to be said this is about the only time that I get really competitive, I have no idea why, but something just comes over me and I get super excited and shout like crazy encouraging the girls over the finish line to a bucket of feed!

First up was Mocha, she was the very first ever winner of the Whalton Sheep race so I have high expectations.  Unfortunately I wasn't quick enough to get a bet on the tote, but plenty of others did and she did them proud, clear winner.

Next up was Mia, two times previous winner and would have been a third time winner had somebody not decided to open a crisp packet on the way round which caused Mia to stop in her tracks and make sure she could eat them, she had a half course lead at the time!!!

Anyway off they set and she was clearly in the lead, but being rather well built (she is very greedy) and having a bit, or rather a lot of a weight disadvantage she was tiring towards the end and being caught.

And at the last hurdle she was over taken, the jockey waving to the crowd didn't really help aerodynamics! 

Third up was Curly, now this was funny, she didn't like the jockey for starters, then she didn't want to leave her mates, the crowd thought it was funny but poor Curly was last!

The final heat, Ebony's race was fantastically close and three of the four ewes crossed the line together, sadly for Ebony she was beat by a nose.  For the first time in its history there was one sheep from each team in the final, it was going to be hard for me to retain my crown; the cup vanished the only year I didn't win it so there was not much chance of getting that back anyway!!

Thankfully Mocha did me proud; and I'd managed to place a bet that time so double whammy; go Mocha, despite being an old girl in sheep years, 10.5yrs and having no teeth that wasn't going to stop her winning.

Many thanks to the Cronicle for some fantastic photo's, you can see more on their website


Shirley said...

Terrific action photos and a great story about Mia and the crisps! Were they 'Walkers?!' Shirley & Robbie

Apple Vale Alpacas said...

A nice bit of light relief from the serious business of alpacas...but then your sheep raacing is serious too!

Rosemary said...

Great photos!