NICOLE Priebbenow was positively beaming after an impressive run at the Heritage Bank Toowoomba Royal Show.
Ms Priebbenow shows Australian illawarra shorthorns on behalf of her parents, who run a 180-strong milking herd at Silverleigh.
Mum Leanne Priebbenow said the family had already done quite well in terms of their profile in the breeding community and probably wouldn't bother with showing if it wasn't for their daughter's enthusiasm.
"Nicole does it because she just loves doing it," Mrs Priebbenow said.
"We were doing alright getting our name out there without the show.
"We've always bred good bulls and cows, so we're well-known in the illawarra side of the industry."
It was that enthusiasm that helped them pick up Champion Illawarra Cow, Supreme Juvenile Heifer, Reserve Supreme Intermediate (junior) Udder, Supreme Intermediate Heifer, Supreme Udder and the all-important Supreme Champion Dairy Cow.
Mrs Priebbenow said it was rare for an illawarra to do so well in the supreme sections, with awards more traditionally going to other dairy breeds.
"The cow that won this year we took along last year and got Champion Illawarra, but usually it's jerseys and holsteins that come through for supreme," Mrs Priebbenow said.
"I don't know what was different this year, but usually they have all the judges from every breed, but this year they trialled one judge who came highly recommended.
"But she did deserve it and looked the better cow, and that's also what we heard from everyone else."
She said they were pleased with breed performance in terms of calving ease and temperament, with the slightly lower milk production a fair trade-off for better protein and fat content.
Mrs Priebbenow said the family felt it had found the perfect balance with the herd, which was small enough for them to run without employing additional labour, but large enough to make it profitable.
"I think we've found we've got to milk that many cows to get by," she said.
"I think smaller producers struggle a bit. When we were milking 120, that was a hard slog."
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