Se­nior show judge will be missed

Matamata Chronicle - - News - By TERESA RAM­SEY

Manawaru School stu­dent Zoe Kidd was awarded the MidNorth­ern Dis­trict rib­bon at the Te Aroha AP&H Show in hon­our of the late Jersey breeder and se­nior judge Rion Belfield, who passed away last month.

Judge Gra­ham John­son said Belfield had been judg­ing for more than five decades and would be missed.

‘‘He had a strong character, he with­stood no non­sense,’’ he said.

‘‘He made up his mind and was very con­fi­dent. He didn’t hold back he knew what he was talk­ing about and knew what he was do­ing.’’

Belfield had his own style in the show ring. ‘‘ He al­ways wore shorts and shirt with a tie. He was the only fella I’ve ever seen judg­ing in shorts,’’ he said.

Belfield de­vel­oped his fam­ily farm 15 kilo­me­tres north of Mata­mata into a lead­ing Jersey breed­ing stud.

Made­ley Park Jersey Stud held its 60th an­nual sale last year, with buy­ers com­ing from as far as In­ver­cargill and Kaitaia, with a top auc­tion price of $16,000 for an in-calf heifer.

John­son said


also trained up-com­ing show judges and was on the Thames Val­ley panel of judges.

Zoe was awarded the spe­cial rib­bon after she won Cham­pion Dairy Type with her calf Ginger at the Te Aroha AP&H Show on Novem­ber 22.

Te Aroha Dis­trict Calf Club and show con­venor Dave Hig­gins said Zoe’s calf was a very well struc­tured an­i­mal.

‘‘It’s a very good, well-bred calf,’’ he said.

Zoe’s mother Maria Kidd said she was pleased the rib­bon was awarded to a Te Aroha per­son.

‘‘It’s a great hon­our, (Belfield) was a great man and he judged me for years,’’ she said.

Com­pe­ti­tion was fierce in the calf ring, with 38 calves com­pet­ing at the show.

Belfield passed away peace­fully at home on his farm in Ngarua on Oc­to­ber 14. He is sur­vived by his wife Tr­ish, three chil­dren and one grand­child.

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