Farmer White scoops top prize for cattle breeding
FORMER Tigers, England and Lions prop Julian White now has a prestigious farming award to place alongside his various jerseys, rugby trinkets and a cabinet full of medals won with Leicester.
White, right, and his wife Sara recently won the much-coveted National Herd award for breeding South Devons on their farm near Market Harborough.
“After 12 years breeding South Devons we are absolutely delighted, it’s right up there with winning my Test caps,” says White, who combined farming and rugby towards the end of his career.
“Within our farming world and community it’s quite an important thing, a public acknowledgement that you are getting things right and the quality of your product is guaranteed.
“Our herd is 250 strong so it’s a pretty full on job – dawn to dusk – as I’m a bit of a perfectionist which is probably a hangover from my rugby days.
“We have nearly 1,000 sheep to look after as well now so I’m keeping in pretty good shape. I’m 44 and feel as fit as when I retired at 39 and I haven’t been anywhere near a gym since I packed the rugby in.”
As tradition demands among South Devon breeders, White doesn’t get to defend his title. He now becomes a judge for a year, touring the country with two other eminent breeders inspecting and marking the entrants for 2018 competition. After that he can return to the fray.
“I will be a blazer for a year,” jokes White.
Now there’s a delicious thought to leave you with.
Competition mode: White with his award-winning South Devon