SHOWSTOPPERS

The Sunday Times - - News - TREVOR PADDENBURG

THEY might look like an odd cou­ple, but pint-sized Brid­gette Ow­ston, who tips the scales at just 40kg, reck­ons she loves hang­ing out with her “big” sis­ter Jaffa, the 700kg Jersey cow.

Jaffa was a 2007 Perth Royal Show cham­pion and now she’s help­ing train the next gen­er­a­tion of milk­ers at Broselinda Park, a small dairy run by Wayne Ow­ston, 35, and his wife Belinda, 31, who will be ex­hibit­ing nine heifers this year.

Help­ing them will be their chil­dren Brid­gette, 7, who is in charge of feed­ing each new­born calf, and four-year-old Jake, who has al­ready de­vel­oped the fam­ily fond­ness for bovines.

“Jaffa is re­tired now and liv­ing a life of bliss, but she helps to train the young cows,” Mr Ow­ston, who has ex­hib­ited at ev­ery Royal Show since 1999, said.

As well as feed­ing du­ties, Brid­gette is in charge of nam­ing the new­born calves.

“The last one was Clara­belle Cow. They’re mostly named af­ter Dis­ney char­ac­ters,” Mr Ow­ston said.

He has been al­lowed to name just a few him­self, show­ing a pen­chant for sul­try hero­ines from gory TV se­ries Game

of Thrones and Vik­ings. “I went with Daen­erys and Lagertha,” he ad­mit­ted.

The fam­ily, who will ex­hibit hol­stein, jersey and guernsey cows at this year’s show, said train­ing a cham­pion was no small feat.

“When you win, you see the hard work of years and years and years pay off. You don’t grab a cow and take it to be show and win. It’s se­lect breed­ing, rais­ing it so it can win. Plan­ning for next year is al­ready un­der way now,” he said.

Or­gan­is­ers of the IGA Royal Perth Show, which has been run­ning since 1831, are ex­pect­ing about 16,000 en­tries in more than 40 com­pe­ti­tions. Aside from an­i­mals, there are food cat­e­gories such as olive oil, beer and cider, meat, bread and pas­try, dairy and choco­late.

The show runs from Septem­ber 2229 at Clare­mont Show­ground.

En­try for chil­dren is half price on Septem­ber 27 and se­niors can get in for half price a day later.

Pic­ture: Daniel Wilkins

Help­ing hand: Brid­gette Ow­ston with former Royal Show cham­pion Jaffa.

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