Grace McIlroy | Year 12 Student and Cattle Club Captain
On Sunday 31 July, 10 Cattle Club members, led by Mr Collet, and Mrs McIlroy (our volunteer supervisor) headed off to Brisbane for the 2022 EKKA. Grace, Maddie, Mackenzie, Dan, Ben, James, Georgina, Natalie, Georgia, and Cruz jumped off the bus and were thrown straight into the hype and excitement of preparing cattle for the School Steer competition.
For the whole team, this was their first time experiencing the EKKA and with some assistance, they were able to locate their stall, prepare the animals and have them ready for showing the next day. We were grateful to have past students David Bartley and Emma Mills onsite, who gave the team some guidance with clipping and shared some insight about what to expect at a Royal Show. It was really helpful to learn some tricks of the trade, which help settle the nerves for the team.
We welcomed another 7 members of the Cattle Club along with Mrs Kuhn on Monday. Monday also saw the commencement of the School Paraders’ Competition. In the 14-15 years class, Ben Carey and Georgia Mulcahy were successful, with Ben placing 4th and Georgia placing 6th. In the 11-13 years class, Natalie Mulcahy and Grace Muller were successful, with Natalie placing 4th and Grace placing 5th. Daniel Hughes placed 8th in his paraders class from a huge field of 98 competitors.
On Tuesday, the Cattle Judging and the Junior Judging events got underway. Grace McIlroy, Ben Carey and Dan Hughes competed in the Team Judging competition, producing a great speech; however, they were not successful in gaining a placing. Mackenzie Taylor should be highly commended for being awarded the overall champion young led steer judge, which is a major achievement. Ben Carey made it all the way through to the State Final of the Prime Steer Judging but unfortunately did not place.
Our cattle also performed well – we placed 2nd and 3rd in the class Led Heifer (401 – 460kg) and 2nd in the Junior Led Steer (401 – 445kg); this same steer also placed 2nd on the hook in the carcass competition.
Although it was difficult saying goodbye to some of our favourite steers and heifers (who departed for the carcass competition) we all had a fantastic overall experience. By the end of the competition, we were keen to come home for a well-deserved rest. We are all really pleased with our efforts and it was great to meet and spend time with students from other schools who share our love of cattle.