Saturday 5 June 2010

Hot legs...

Yesterday morning we set off for the Royal Bath & West Show, only an hours journey for us. We had only entered Ambrosia in the Intermediate class as she was 1 yr old on monday, while Autumn is still Junior and that class was on thursday, and we'd have needed two days away with all the disruption to work etc.

A nice touch was that our set of instructions included a list of what to bring with you, and the last item on the list was, 'a sense of humour'!

So with that in mind, the Judges Briefing included a demonstration of how he wanted the animals paraded around the ring - one of the Assistant Stewards (sorry, not sure who it was) obliged, and she did such a good job, theatrical and animated, that I though I must have got the wrong show ring and was in the Showjumping ring! A light-hearted touch always helps, and didn't get in the way of a professionally run show.

"Can you ride them?"

No-one told Mark about the quicksand...

Judge Nick Harrington-Smith helps to pull her out... (only joking, it is a different alpaca, in a different class, and the judge is checking her 'nether regions' and she is deciding to 'kush')

So to our class, and Ambrosia was youngest, and as she was shorn at only 5 weeks old, the judge noted that some baby fleece was causing 'cross-over' of the fibres. I'll not mention the success of other bloggers, so as to let them tell their story.

Despite the 'bare-leg amnesty' that was declared, I felt that my legs combined with the white show coat wouldn't be a good look, and then regretted not wearing shorts in the sweltering heat.
Outside in the sunshine it was very hot, but in the marquee the sides were open, a breeze blew through, there was shade from the trees and it was very comfortable for us and the alpacas.

A nice touch was the lunch-time barbeque put on by Tim Hey, which gave a chance for breeders to get together.


  1. I have heard that Nick prefers a covered leg!...sounds like great fun Dave.

  2. I am opting for the above the knee shear..this year..! What a bugger that quick sand !!!....Jayne

  3. Poor Mark! Sounds like a good show with fun included. Brosie looks huge now!

  4. Nice one Dave. That was Helen doing the demonstration. I think she enjoyed it a little bit too much!

  5. AnonymousJune 08, 2010

    Not impressed by the handling of the animals in the ring or the standard of the attire. And we expect people to buy alpacas ???

    I am sure it was fun for the owners though.

  6. Hello 'Anonymous' - did you visit the show?
    If so, which days? Perhaps you saw the younger Intermediates or Juniors - the long, severe winter hampered halter training for many breeders.

    If it appeared to be fun for the owners, I expect that would have encouraged prospective purchasers.

    What aspects of handling and attire left you unimpressed?

  7. AnonymousJune 09, 2010

    Your blog pic of Nick Harrington Smith dressed as a cowboy dragging the poor obvioulsy stressed alpaca off the ground by its tail went around this country and Europe as cruel treatment.
    Time these aninmlas were respected.

  8. The camera never lies...but it can be mis-leading. I have checked the data in my camera, and other pictures and the show brochure - the alpaca kushing in the first picture is definitely not the same alpaca having her rear examined by the judge. They are in different classes, fawn and then brown - the photographs were taken 17 minutes apart. The judge was not lifting her, but examining her genitalia. If my light-hearted captions have given the wrong impression, then my apologies to both the judge and the handler.