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Burlington sister and brother now back-to-back Grand Champions at Wisconsin State Fair

Posted at 10:55 PM, Aug 07, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-07 23:56:58-04

WEST ALLIS, Wis. — A 14 year-old Burlington girl is following in her brother’s footsteps when it comes to winning a top prize at the Wisconsin State Fair. Riley Runkel beat out her older brother Reid Runkel for Grand Champion Market Steer. That means she gets to sell her steer at the Governor's Blue Ribbon Livestock Auction on Wednesday night for big money.

“I was blown away," said Riley Runkel after she was named Grand Champion.

So was her mom, Gaill Runkel because this is the second winning year for their family.

"Last year, my son Reid won the Grand Champion Steer and this his sister Riley also won the Grand Champion Steer so back-to-back," said Gail Runkel.

And winning this prize is no easy feat. Riley starts her day at 5:30 a.m everyday to take care of her steer.

“We’re best friend because I am with him all the time,” said Riley Runkel.

Riley and fellow 4-H members basically eat, sleep and live their steer right until they go into the show ring.

“It’s a lot of work. These kids bust their butts everyday. It’s a full time job for them,” said Gail Runkel. "It makes you as a parent really proud of your kids because you could see that they can do this.”

Even more exciting, how much Trippie, Riley's steer, was able to earn. He sold at auction for $47,500. The exact same amount Riley's brother's steer sold for last year.

"It’s crazy," said Riley as she left the auction ring.

“I’m really proud of her,” said her brother Reid Runkel.

This has been a family affair for the Runkel family. Riley’s dad also had a champion steer when he was a kid in 1993.