The Diageo Baileys Champion Cow competition is back at this year’s Virginia Show, taking place on August 24, after a two-year absence due to the pandemic.

Purpose-built showgrounds make this event the envy of other counties. Its picturesque setting, close to the shore of Lough Ramor, right in the heartland of Co. Cavan, also makes it a great day-trip for farming and non-farming families alike.

And, the Diageo Baileys competition is a huge draw to farmers.

Owen Brodie, President of the Virginia Show committee

Diageo Baileys Champion Cow

Baileys and its cream supplier, Glanbia Ireland, are searching for Ireland’s finest example of the Holstein Friesian breed.  

Fondly known as the ‘all-Ireland for dairy cows,’ entrants will be battling it out for a share of the €10,000 prize fund.  

There’s much at stake for the owners of these great cows. A win in the show-ring at ‘The Baileys’ is the ultimate form of promotion for their herd and there is huge pride in representing their county.

This year’s bovine beauties will have to impress David Booth in his first judging role at an Irish Show.

David hales from North Yorkshire where the family farm Feizor Holsteins won Master Breeder status in 2017.

A range of category prizes will be awarded first. Then all eyes will be on David as he taps out this year’s Diageo Baileys Champion.

500 classes

The competition, ‘The Baileys’, gets underway at 3:15p.m at the Virginia show in Co. Cavan.

Before then, there are almost 500 classes showcasing the very best of Irish agriculture from horse, sheep, beef and dairy classes as well as stockperson contests.

Biodiversity hall

New to the show this year is a ‘Water and Biodiversity Hall‘ which provides information for land managers, farmers, gardeners, homeowners, and food producers to help address the current situation with biodiversity and water quality, and to shine a light on the positive role farming and food production can play.

The hall is intended to inform farmers, householders, gardeners and the general public on opportunities to support essential ecosystems in a meaningful way.

Visitors will be able to learn about water quality, identify the rivers in the Lough Ramor catchment and study the biology that inhabits these rivers.

It will bring to life how sustainable management of the land has an important role to play in securing a viable future for all.

Celebrity chef cookery demo

For families in search of an end-of-summer day out, the popular artisan stalls selling locally produced crafts and food; children’s amusements; trade stands; floral and baking displays; fashion and cookery demonstrations; and an art exhibition will offer something for all ages.

Cavan-born celebrity chef Adrian Martin, owner of Wildflower Restaurant in Dublin, will demonstrate his fine culinary skills at this year’s cookery demonstration.

Here are six more fun things to do at the Virginia Show:

  • Take a selfie at the gig rig with live outdoor music;
  • Pick your favourite to win ‘the Baileys’ in the Baileys Cow Hotel;
  • Share a coffee with friends at one of our many eateries;
  • Visit the Baileys Cow Hall of Fame in the Glanbia marquee;
  • Spot the winner of the most appropriately dressed person competition;
  • Find out about the latest trends at the fashion show.

If that’s not enough, visitors can also expect to see: Birds of prey; dogs doing tricks; ponies prancing; sheep shearing; sheep racing; and an array of hot and cold delicious foods to purchase throughout the show.

Tickets are available to purchase online via the show’s website, with an early bird €5 discount on the ticket price available now.

For further information, contact the Virginia Show secretary on: 049 854 7197; or 086 075 8364; or email [email protected].

For the latest updates on the show, check out Virginia Show’s Facebook and Twitter accounts or search the following hashtag: #diageobaileyscow.

For further information on the Virginia Show, click here.