Riding Shotgun – The Supremes

Riding Shotgun Caption
As we travel the highways and by-ways of the Limousin family and breed we often cuss and discuss the cattle business, sports, politics, great cheeseburgers and most of the time, the promotion and marketing of Limousin cattle.

Through “Riding Shotgun” we invite you to join us in the right-hand seat, so that we can let you in on what we find to be our marketing pet peeves, shortcuts and some of the favorite habits of top-flight professional producers. Grab a cup of coffee and take the ‘shotgun seat’—we are pleased to have you riding along.

We would like to take this space to congratulate all of the “Supremes”. If you have been watching L365 and social media, it is obvious the Limousin Show Heifer is making quite a mark around the countryside. At State Fairs and Jackpots everywhere, the Limousin female has made her way to the top of the heap. The exhibition of all the breed champions together is a relatively new phenomenon, in the U.S. Thirty years ago, when I judged the Royal Melbourne Show in Melbourne, Australia, it was the highlight of show the week with the show of the breeds taking place in a soccer stadium, with more than 10,000 cheering Aussies in attendance. The judges were the judges from various breed shows, and we had our results publicly posted and had to talk reasons.

I’m glad to see we are bringing this into the show programs here, and I think it is satisfying that our cattle are not only winning their share but are also making people that don’t normally watch the Limousin show, observe what functional, performance-oriented, sound creatures you the breeders are creating and exhibiting. THANKS go out to all exhibitors who fight the parking, camping and show crowds to exhibit for the rest of us; you are making an impression we all are benefiting from. CONGRATULATIONS and a big pat on the back to the winners, you have beat them all and even if you don’t win you have impressed someone. GO Limousin! In the fall of 1977, I spent four of the best months of my life as a member of the Mizzou Livestock Judging team. Ten of my current best friends and I spent many mornings and late nights traveling around the Midwest stopping at as many as six farms a day and talking reasons on 10 classes a day of hogs, sheep, horses and cattle. We missed every football game our senior year (Mizzou was horrible) to learn how to make a decision and defend that decision in two minutes or less. I went to places I never thought I would see like: Glenkirk Farms, HampAn Farms, Forkner Durocs, Weaver Angus, Wiese Herefords, Sydenstricker Angus and many more that left us with new ideas, new knowledge and personal relationships that are still strong today, 45 years later.

Thank you, Dr. Greg Martin and all the breeders nice enough to make classes for us and to serve lunch, dinner and maybe a cold beer. Thanks for the new ideas and discussions I remember to this day. I got my first job and every other one since because of the judging team and have enjoyed a life in the livestock industry every day.

This brings me to my closing comment. I will bet that a FFA, Junior College or College coach would love another place to stop and judge for two hours or all day. Find a team in your area and call them up. Offer your place and some hospitality. Figure out how to show them at least a couple of classes of four head and a small part of your operation. Get some sandwiches and chips together and be a salesman for 20 minutes. The person you make an impression on may be the next buyer of your top heifer or herd bull. Their dad or grandad may take their advice and show up on your doorstep the next time they need seedstock. If nothing else you will spread the word, Limousin, and that’s a good thing. If you don’t know who to call, call me, I’ll find you one.

See ya down the road.


Mark A Smith
email: [email protected]
phone: 515-229-5227