Donegal double as 'love' pays dividends for Pat

Patrick McClean, Roughan, Newtowncunningham, Lifford, Co Donegal (centre) with double prizewinners, Roughan One and Roughan Once sold for €9,400 at the Irish Charolais Cattle Society Bull Show and Sale at Tullamore on Saturday and handlers, Kieran McLough
Patrick McClean, Roughan, Newtowncunningham, Lifford, Co Donegal (centre) with double prizewinners, Roughan One and Roughan Once sold for €9,400 at the Irish Charolais Cattle Society Bull Show and Sale at Tullamore on Saturday and handlers, Kieran McLough

Martin Ryan

A Donegal breeder had a winning day out on the double at the Irish Charolais Cattle Society show and sale at Tullamore.

The Roughan herd from Newtowncunningham, near Lifford, founded more than 30 years ago, has a long-established record for the quality of its pedigree stock.

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Pat McClean doesn't hide the "love" he has developed for the Charolais breed or his desire to seek out the best breeding lines across the continent.

One of his most successful breeding achievements has been Roughan Madilin, a heifer that became the breed price-topper of the year in 2017, selling for €14,500 at the society elite heifer show and sale.

Pedigree breeders have regularly paid up to €10,000 for bulls from the herd at home or at the society sales, where Pat has become a regular exhibitor in the judging rings over recent years.

While Saturday's success couldn't match many of his days out in the past for either rosettes or prices, he added a double honour not often achieved.

Pedigree bulls Roughan One and Roughan Once were placed second and third respectively in the class for bulls born between March 20, 2017 and April 9, 2018, with the winner of the class going on to become Champion of the Show.

The two bulls maintained as much interest from the breeders at the ringside as they had attracted from show judge Paddy McCabe to sell at the second and third highest prices of the day, €4,400 and €5,000.

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Both bulls were March 2018-born and bred by Roughan Gibraltar, a sire with award-winning ancestry in France.

Once was bred from the herd dam Roughan Haven and One was bred from Roughan Jacintha.

They are both five-star and four-star for terminal and replacement indexes within the breed, and five- and three-star across all beef breeds, with calving difficulty of 6.4pc and 5.7pc.

It may not have been the best ever day out for the herd, but Pat ranked it as "a nice one" in a season which has not matched up to recent years for pedigree breeders of any description.

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