A massive ram from the North Ashrose stud, Gulnare, named Salto after the major Merino producing area in Uruguay, has won one of the major awards at the 2019 Australian Sheep & Wool Show.
North Ashrose stud worker Sebastian Salaberry who also hails from the region was delighted when the 20.7 micron ram- exhibited by the Ashby family - was given the nod for grand champion medium wool ram of the show.
The August shorn, NA 4119, impressed the judges with its overall balance, structure and abundance of white wool.
"Structurally he is so sound, he stands so well, his staple is bright and he is so well covered," Vic associate judge Will Crawford said.
The four-tooth ram had a 20.7 micron fleece with a 3.2SD, 13.8CV and 98.8CF which it carried on its 165kg frame.
Salto had another South American connection, being an AI-bred son of a ram which sold to Teka stud, Argentina, for $25,000 in 2016.
Stud principal Tom Ashby was thrilled with the stud's first medium wool grand championship at Bendigo with the ram out of an Olympic family ewe.
"It is one of the hardest ones to win with so more entries in the medium wools, it takes a pretty good sheep to get up," he said.
Mr Ashby rated Salto as one of the best structured rams North Ashrose had ever bred, especially the way he handled his immense weight.
"We sold his father so we thought we had better keep him - he could even be a fraction better," he said.
"We were looking for a good horned sire for about four years but now we have bred one so we are pretty lucky.
"He has depth of body, width of carcase and spring of ribs and also has tremendous staple length and great white wool wherever you open him up."
Also progressing through the ranks in the medium wool section was a four-tooth, full wool, Merino ewe from the Brooks family, East Bungaree, Hallett, which won champion medium wool ewe.
North Ashrose also rose to the top with the champion March shorn fine-medium wool Poll Merino ram.
In the strong wool March shorn section the Sullivan family, Greenfields stud, Hallett, claimed the champion Poll Merino ram , while the Meyer family, Mulloorie stud, Brinkworth, took out the Merino ewe with a 19.9M two-tooth.
SA studs stood up in the junior championships with Mallee stud, Kamora Park, Karoonda, winning champion fine wool with KP772 a ram being offered in their on-property sale next month.
Old Ashrose stud, Hallett won reserve junior champion strong wool ram with an AI-bred son of 'Will'.
The 20.9M ram will be offered as the second lot in the stud's Adelaide Merino ram sale team.