Finger family wins Clermont Beef Expo four out of five years

Sally Gall
By Sally Gall
Updated November 3 2020 - 9:35pm, first published 9:30am
Hoch & Wilkinson's Jake Passfield, centre with Clermont Beef Expo grand champion pen winners, Frank Finger and Scott Finger Hillview Cattle Co. Pictures: Alisha Hoch

Clermont's Finger family, based at Hillview, has claimed a quadrella of wins in the last five years of exhibiting at the highly regarded Clermont Beef Expo.

Of the 1200-head yarding last Friday, their pen of Simmental-cross 704kg grain-fed bullocks yielded the grand champion exhibit, the 100-day Jap bullock class, champion pen of grain-fed, and Sally Taylor Memorial champion beast prizes.



The pen was sold for 379c/kg, or $2668 a head, to JBS Rockhampton.

They also won the trade steers grain-fed class with Simmental-cross steers weighing 630kg, making 376c/kg or $2368/hd.

The family started their winning way in 2016, backing up in 2017 and 2018 before returning to the winner's podium this year, crediting both the Simmental genetics and their finishing at Capella's Paringa feedlot with their success.

"We first bought Simmental bulls in 2007 and we like their softness," Scott Finger said. "We just can't have straight Simmental because we have some marginal country."

The winning cattle were from Simmental bulls and either Brahman or Droughtmaster cows.

Mr Finger said they'd been up against a great line-up of cattle in a day they enjoyed participating in because it kept the yards busy and put their cattle before a good number of buyers.

"We'll definitely be back next year," he said.

Local veterinary legend Alan Guilfoyle, Table Downs, Clermont took out the pen of feeder steers class with Charolais-cross steers that weighed 405kgs to make 424c/kg or $1717/hd.

It was also judged the champion pen of store cattle.

A and C Guilfoyle also won the feeder heifer class, with a pen of Simmental-cross heifers that weighed 403kgs to reach 416c/kg to return $1679/hd.

Mr Guilfoyle said he preferred to background cattle rather than breed them, buying out of the local sales and from Glynn Williams and family, Mt Mica Grazing.

"Our season hasn't been brilliant but I've been able to roll these over in a 12 month period," he said. "Charolais and Charbray seems to work for me, as well as the Simmental and Simbrah heifers from Troy and Ann Kinnon at New Corry."

He credited quality weaners and sensitive management of his country with his wins - this is one of many he has to his name.

"If you treat your country fairly it treats you back," he said.

Droughtmaster bullocks shown by the Saal and Beil families, Mazeppa, Clermont, weighing 647kg, won the grass-fed Jap bullocks class, selling for 377kg and returning $2441/hd.



Similar steers weighing 487kg won the families the grass-fed trade steer class, making 379c/kg and returning $1848/hd.

Two prizes were handed out to the Murphy family, Tay Glen, Dysart - the crop/grain-assisted bullock class won by their Droughtmaster-cross Jap bullocks weighing 639kg, making 385c/kg and returning $2460/hd; and the export cow class won by their 570kg Brahman cows that made 295c/kg to come back at $1681/kg.

The pen of crop/grain-assisted trade steers prize was won by the Harvey Family, Kenlogan, Clermont with a pen of 548kg Droughtmaster steers that made 382c/kg and returned $2093/hd.

Angus-cross heifers weighing 450kg exhibited by the Kuene family, Sunny Park, Clermont won the trade heifer crop/grain-assisted class and sold for 368c/kg or $1659/hd.

The grass-fed trade heifer class went to the Hughes family of Wentworth, Clermont. Their pen of Angus/Wagyu-cross heifers weighing 403kg sold for 343c/kg to make $1384/hd.

Hoch & Wilkinson selling agents Jake Passfield and Tony Hoch drumming up bids for the 1200 head in the expo.



The pen of store steers prize was won by Troy and Ann Kinnon, New Corry, Clermont with a pen of Simmental-cross steers that weighed 308kgs to make 476c/kg to return $1466/hd. Their 293kg brothers won the weaner steer class, making 472c/kg to return $1384/hd.

The pen of store heifers was won by Michael Borg and family, Calveston, Clermont with Gelbvieh-cross heifers weighing 247kgs to make 430c/kg to return $1064/hd.

Cattle were drawn from the local Clermont district as well as from Dysart and Mackay regions.

Spokesman Jake Passfield described it as an "unbelievable sale" with records hit across all classes.

Weaner steers went for up to 532c/kg.

In keeping with the "waste not, want not" theme of the 2020 expo, guest speaker Krista Watkins, the 2018 AgriFutures Rural Woman of The Year, spoke about her and her husband Rob's journey to commercialising green banana flour and making use of excess bananas.



Sally Gall

Sally Gall

Senior journalist - Queensland Country Life/North Queensland Register

Based at Blackall, CW Qld, where I've raised a family, run Merino sheep and beef cattle, and helped develop a region - its history, tourism, education and communications.

Get the latest Queensland news in your inbox

Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.

We care about the protection of your data. Read our Privacy Policy.