Weld County Fair: Longmont teen’s steer takes top honor | TheFencePost.com

Weld County Fair: Longmont teen’s steer takes top honor

Bill Jackson
Greeley, Colo.

ERIC BELLAMY/ebellamy@greeleytribune.comKyndal Reitzenstein, front, and Grant Vickland, exit the show ring after winning reserve grand champion and grand champion, respectively, in market beef at the Weld County Fair Friday in Greeley.

Grant Vickland of Longmont said he thought he had a chance at winning this year’s market beef championship at the Weld County Fair.

“No you didn’t,” his mother, Patty, and several others reminded him. He thought, they said, that his sister, Hannah, would win.

But in the eyes of Ryan Rathman, an associate professor of animal science at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas, Vickland’s 1,298-pound crossbred steer was at the top of the class of the 110 beef animals he evaluated under sunny skies Friday morning.

Reserve championship honors went to Kyndal Reitzenstein, 16, of Kersey, with a 1,345-pound purebred Black Angus she called “Tank, because he’s so big.” She’s been showing market beef animals for the past eight years and it was the second big championship she’s won at the Weld fair. She had the grand champion in 2007.

Grant, 13, a member of the Calico ‘N Jeans 4-H Club of Johnstown, was a man of few words. He said he’s worked with his grand champion since last October and just called him 557, which was the number of his ear tag.

“Sort of,” he said when asked if he thought he could win the top trophy at this year’s show. That’s when the rest of the family and friends gathered around who jumped on him, enjoying watching him turn a little on the red side.

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“He’s not much of a talker; he’s a little shy,” his mother said.

Kyndal, the daughter of Mark and Aye Reitzenstein, is a member of the High Plains 4-H Club of Kersey and said she got her steer in Kansas in January and has worked with him since then getting ready for this year’s fair.

She was happy with the win and the way her steer handled, despite the warm and muggy conditions that set in by noon when the show concluded.

“As hot as it is, he really did pretty good,” she said.

Rathman, in making comments to a good-sized crowd on the grassy area in front of the 4-H Building in Island Grove Regional Park, noted the rising heat as well.

“It’s been a fun morning, but as bald as I’m starting to get I guess I should have worn a hat or put on some sunscreen,” he said. He’s coached six consecutive national championship livestock judging teams – three each at Texas Tech and Texas A&M – plus four national championship meat animal evaluation teams at Tech.

He said he enjoyed judging the animals and the kids who exhibited them.

“It’s been a great bunch of kids to work with. I hope I didn’t work too fast or too slow, but I wanted to make sure each of them got a fair look,” Rathman said of the exhibitors. He said Grant’s steer “captured my attention right away” when it came into the show ring for the first time, and added the rest of the animals that made the championship run all had a good chance at the reserve championship.

“There was just a tremendous lineup of animals here this morning and every single one of them out here in the championship run could justifiably be the best,” he said.

Grant Vickland of Longmont said he thought he had a chance at winning this year’s market beef championship at the Weld County Fair.

“No you didn’t,” his mother, Patty, and several others reminded him. He thought, they said, that his sister, Hannah, would win.

But in the eyes of Ryan Rathman, an associate professor of animal science at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas, Vickland’s 1,298-pound crossbred steer was at the top of the class of the 110 beef animals he evaluated under sunny skies Friday morning.

Reserve championship honors went to Kyndal Reitzenstein, 16, of Kersey, with a 1,345-pound purebred Black Angus she called “Tank, because he’s so big.” She’s been showing market beef animals for the past eight years and it was the second big championship she’s won at the Weld fair. She had the grand champion in 2007.

Grant, 13, a member of the Calico ‘N Jeans 4-H Club of Johnstown, was a man of few words. He said he’s worked with his grand champion since last October and just called him 557, which was the number of his ear tag.

“Sort of,” he said when asked if he thought he could win the top trophy at this year’s show. That’s when the rest of the family and friends gathered around who jumped on him, enjoying watching him turn a little on the red side.

“He’s not much of a talker; he’s a little shy,” his mother said.

Kyndal, the daughter of Mark and Aye Reitzenstein, is a member of the High Plains 4-H Club of Kersey and said she got her steer in Kansas in January and has worked with him since then getting ready for this year’s fair.

She was happy with the win and the way her steer handled, despite the warm and muggy conditions that set in by noon when the show concluded.

“As hot as it is, he really did pretty good,” she said.

Rathman, in making comments to a good-sized crowd on the grassy area in front of the 4-H Building in Island Grove Regional Park, noted the rising heat as well.

“It’s been a fun morning, but as bald as I’m starting to get I guess I should have worn a hat or put on some sunscreen,” he said. He’s coached six consecutive national championship livestock judging teams – three each at Texas Tech and Texas A&M – plus four national championship meat animal evaluation teams at Tech.

He said he enjoyed judging the animals and the kids who exhibited them.

“It’s been a great bunch of kids to work with. I hope I didn’t work too fast or too slow, but I wanted to make sure each of them got a fair look,” Rathman said of the exhibitors. He said Grant’s steer “captured my attention right away” when it came into the show ring for the first time, and added the rest of the animals that made the championship run all had a good chance at the reserve championship.

“There was just a tremendous lineup of animals here this morning and every single one of them out here in the championship run could justifiably be the best,” he said.