When Jessica Siedhoff’s steer “Stan” stepped on her foot and tore her jeans before she brought him into the ring it was a good omen.
The same thing happened to Siedhoff at last year’s market steer competition at the Washington Town and Country Fair and her steer won grand champion.
The 15-year-old from New Haven did it again Thursday evening.
For the third year in a row, Siedhoff’s steer was named grand champion which Fair livestock officials say has never been done before.
Siedhoff’s 1,260-pound Chi-Cross will be the first steer on the auction block at Saturday’s blue ribbon livestock auction which begins at noon.
All 62 steers in the competition received blue ribbons and will be eligible for the steer auction which grossed $168,080 last year. The average price paid per pound for steers at last year’s auction was $2.22.
Siedhoff, who admitted being superstitious, was wearing the same pair of “lucky” jeans Thursday night she has worn at six previous steer shows this year. Her steer performed well at every one including being named grand champion at the New Haven Fair.
“I’m very surprised,” Siedhoff said after the competition. “But when he ripped the bottom of my jeans it was a good sign. The same thing happened last year so I felt pretty good after that. I worked with him every day since January in the hot and cold weather. It was a lot of hard work but it was worth it.”
Siedhoff is the daughter of Alan and Sheryl Siedhoff, New Haven. She is entering her sophomore year at St. Francis Borgia Regional High School. She is a member of the New Haven 4-H Club.
Andi Placht exhibited the reserve champion. Her 1,000-pound Maine-Crossbred steer “Swagger” will be the second steer auctioned Saturday.
Placht, 17, is the daughter of Barb and Bill Placht, New Haven. She will be a senior at Washington High School and is also a member of the New Haven 4-H Club.
“I call him Swagger because he’s got ‘swag.’ ” Placht said after the show.
Placht said she will use a portion of the proceeds from the auction to buy another steer for next year’s competition. She hopes to go to the University of Missouri and become a large animal veterinarian.
Showmanship winners were Chris Kahlenbeck, Union, senior division, Jessica Siedhoff, New Haven, intermediate and Anna Elbert, Washington, junior division.
Kane Causemaker, Atkinson Ill., judged the steer competition as well as the hog show earlier in the day. He said this was his 15th steer show he judged this year and he was impressed.
“This was my first experience in Washington,” Causemaker said after the show. “I have to say I’m pretty impressed with your Fair and the way you run your livestock shows. As far as the steers go in terms of quality, it was on the upper end of all the shows I’ve judged this year.”
Last year Happy Apple Company, Washington, bought the grand champion steer for $4,812.50 or $3.50 a pound.