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Championship Trial
Venue: Tewkesbury
Trial Held: 30 March 2013

STAKE: CD  

Judge: GARY HAIM

Steward: Sandra Haim

23 entered, 17 ran.

My thanks to BAGSD for the invitation to judge the CD stake.  Also to Trials Manager, John West, and his team who made sure we were well looked after.  Special thanks to Sandra, who laid all the squares and scribed the control round.  Jan Darby looked after the base and did all the scores; Julie Skipp kept us fed using an awning as her kitchen in bitterly cold conditions - many thanks to both of you.

The farmers at Tewkesbury allowed us to use a field at the back of their yard where we could do all the nosework and control without having to move.  The field was in lovely condition and considering the problems the farmers have had this year we were lucky to be allowed on there - many thanks to them.

I would like to thank all the competitors, who had clearly put a lot of effort into their training, especially the jumps.  Out of seventeen competitors fifteen qualified the jumps, four of those on full marks, and one of those was only 17.5 inches high, and made it look so easy.  It just goes to show the solution is not always about lowering the standard in trials, it’s about getting dogs fit and training the exercise properly, as competitors clearly had, and a lot of those were new to trials.  It was a pleasure to judge your dogs.

1st Ann Ketteringham with PADDYDEPAWS AT COALWAY, X-Breed, 95.5, Q.  17.5 inches of pure power, beautifully trained; Ash could not wait to show us how good he was.  Lovely calm handling from Anne.  I look forward to seeing him progress up the stakes.  Very well done, Ann, he’s a credit to you.  C/A 47.5, Agility 20, N/W 28.

2nd Neil Green-Morris with EYLAVERHOF WICKED AT DANOKA, Rottweiler, 92.5, Q.  Kai has a more laid back attitude to his work; he works in a steady and precise manor and made a good job of all the exercises.  Well done, Neil.  46.5, 20, 26

3rd Sue Main with JAZZ THE JOKER, WSD, 89.5, Q.  Another good all round performance from Jazz and Sue. Heelwork needs a bit more work, other than that a good attempt.  Well done.  43.5, 17.5, 28.5

4th Meg O’Kelly with STARDELL NAOS, BC, 87.5, Q.  Heelwork and long jump cost you a better place today, all the other exercises Taos carried out to a very good standard.  Well done, Meg.  45.5, 14, 28

Also qualifying CDEx:

Shirley Simpson with WESTMIDS KYRE, GSD, 87.5

Felicity Veazey with JANALLEN BAKARI, Groen, 87

Catherine Manfield with GLENALPINE OZZY ZIG, BC, 86.5

Pete Jones with DURSTONE BRYN, WSD, 82.5

Elinor Anderson with LITTLE TONIC FOR MYRTILLAS, X-Breed, 82

John Fitzpatrick with THREENINES ACE OF CLUBS, Malinois, 81.5

Margaret Sterry with DAISTANS RECARDO, X-Breed, 81

Qualifying CD:

Hilary Wilson with HOLLOWAY HOT CHOCOLATE, WSD, 79.5

Nicky Prescott with WAGGERLAND TWINKLE, WSD, 71


 

STAKE: UD

Judge: MARNEY WELLS

Tracklayers: Val Upton and Sue Ashby

Steward: Lindsey Poole

Thanks to BAGSD for asking me to judge the UD Stake at Tewkesbury, and many thanks to John West for taking on the onerous task of Trial Manager – brave boy and well done!  Jan Darby did her usual brilliant job in the base and Julie Skipp provided exactly the right food. Thanks to both ladies!!  Many thanks to Val and Sue for laying the tracks with their usual skill, which gave all of the dogs the best chance possible, and huge thanks to Lindsey who has to be the most efficient steward I could have had.  You were all brilliant and great company.  With those three, I had the best team I could have asked for out in the fields: all of them so experienced, it made my job easy – all I had to do was watch the dogs and they really did have to work hard; it was very cold, dry and windy for the nosework.  All of the handlers should be very proud of their dogs for doing any tracking in those conditions, they were most impressive.  Not surprisingly with it that difficult, we only had three out of eight qualifying the nosework, and, sadly, none of those managed to qualify the C/A, but the three who attempted all of the exercises were placed as follows:

1st Pete Jones handling DURSTONE BRYN for Sue, WSD, D.  Bryn worked very well on the track, gaining the best track mark but with only one article – I think Pete may have been standing on the first one!  (Bryn did try to tell him!)  Bryn has such a lovely attitude to his work and followed the track with a good square.  His agility was near perfect and his control round was good apart from the sendaway and that was such a shame!  He is a lovely dog, and I am sure he will continue to have a very successful career in trials.

2nd and Best Nosework Pippa Bentham with MY BILLIE, WSD, B.  Billie worked her socks off on the track with just a few moments where she appeared to think it was all too much but Pippa kept her going really well.  At the end of the track they certainly kept us in suspense as to whether or not they would get the last article, but Pippa kept her head and let Billie work it out eventually.  Very good team work.  With all four out of the square their performance gained them the Best Nosework rosette.  One of only two dogs to manage the 88 pace sendaway during a good control round.  Unfortunately, the jumps were her downfall today but overall, she shows great potential.

3rd Felicity Veazey with JANALLEN BAKARI, Groen, D.  Jet’s track was very good – he really applied himself even when the going got very tough on one particular corner.  His search square was good with all four articles out.  But for the sendaway, his control round was excellent (even a full mark retrieve, Flis!) and near perfect jumps.  All together a very good, solid performance.

Thanks to all of the competitors who entered your lovely dogs under me; they were a pleasure to judge and good luck in your future trials.  To finish off, special congratulations to Lindsey, who not only managed to steward all week, but found time to work Remy so well that she qualified TDEx and came third!  Brilliant!


 

STAKE: WD

Judge: RUTH CAHILL

Tracklayers: Sue Ashby and Val Upton.

Square and C/A Steward: Lindsey Poole

Thanks to BAGSD for the invitation to judge.  Thanks to John West for his part of the Trials management, and to Ann Clarke for her pre Trial work.  Thanks to Jan Derby in the base and chef Julie Skipp, who coped very well in difficult and cold conditions – still reckon my hot cross buns were cold though!  My tracklayers Sue and Val were so experienced that I knew I could just point out the fields and turn up to find everything organised for me, wonderful!  Thanks to Lindsey for bringing the jumps, putting them up, being great company and an expert steward throughout the test.  Thanks to farmers Tim Morris and Richard Harvey for the tracking land and lastly the Warners for C/A fields.  I sourced the land for this trial and although I found stubble with underlying green growth for TD, the only land available for WD and UD was bare earth, sown two weeks earlier and drying out rapidly in the very windy conditions.  The winner did an amazing track but the all the others struggled against the conditions, and any combination who got away from the pole achieved something and should be proud of their dogs.  The damned wind blew all week and greatly affected all the tracking stakes.

1st. Joyce Tibbetts and VONHAUSWOLF MAUD, GSD, B, WDEx, 195.75.  Could have been tracking at Brook Farm in Surrey on beautiful grass (remember that base folks?) the way she stormed round on the dirt track surface, only losing half a mark for a slight wobble into the strong wind.  All the rest of her work was equally good, a superb dog who should go far.  I will remember seeing that track for a long time!

2nd. Sarah Burroughes and TARNEDGE VELVET, Lab, B, WDEx, 189.  Also a good track (86) and square, full mark jumps and sendaway but just silly mistakes in heelwork and retrieve costing a few marks.  Well done.

3rd.  Judith Owens-Poole’s FIRCROFT DOMINI, BC, B, extremely well handled by Jeff Poole, WDEx, 171.75.  Ziva worked hard in the more difficult field of the two.  Jeff’s quiet handling brought out the best in all her work. You were both so impressive I even forgot to tease you about working a small dog.

4th.  Deb Williams and ASTRA TZIAKA, BC, D, WD, 159.75.  Going wrong at the end of the track and only two articles from the square meant you were struggling even before the dog misread the sendaway.  But I hope you were pleased with his nosework in such difficult conditions.

I felt very sorry for Maurice Millington whose Jud worked hard on the track only to fail the down stay in the last minute.  I have never seen him work so well before; all your work was so good today you deserved better luck.


 

STAKE: TD

Judge:  PAUL ADAMS

Search Steward: Sue Jones, 4 days starting Tuesday

C/A Scribe: Sue Jones

Track Layers: Tom Darby, earlies for 5 days + Run Off tracks; David Barker, 2nd set for 5 days; Ruth Cahill, last set on Mon, Tues and Fri; Chris Gregory, last set on Thurs.

Stay Stewards: Sue Jones and Jan Darby, plus John West was there if we had any trouble with any dog during the stays (fortunately we didn’t)

Sue and Pete were unable to get out of their road because of the snow on Sunday, which meant they were not at the trial until the Monday afternoon, so the track layers kindly laid all the search squares on the Monday.

Ground: 10’’ Stubble on very wet mud.  Weather: Dry but very cold all week

57 Entries, 47 Competing, 10 Scratched.  10 Nosework Qualifiers, 2 Unable to return on Saturday, 7 Qualified TDEx.

Search articles: 1, 4" green earth cable; 2, 4" sash cord; 3, 6" plastic spoon; 4, 2" x 5/8" leather

I would like to thank Sheila Tannert and the BAGSD committee for the invitation to judge the TD Ticket at Tewkesbury 2013. Thank you to John West, Trials Manager, for his hard work; thank you to Jan Darby who ran the base, was stay steward and also sat in John’s van on Saturday filling in the control sheets and letting me know the final scores.  Thanks to Julia Skipp for keeping us fed and watered every day (not an easy job in a tent in the freezing cold).  Thanks to whoever wrote the certificates at the end (I think it might have been Lindsey, if not, sorry).  Thank you to my track layers; without their hard work this or any trial wouldn’t run.  I was privileged to have probably the best ever track layer, Tom Darby; thank you, Tom, also David Barker, who laid every track brilliantly and if necessary used track layers licence to avoid the worst parts of the fields.  David has laid tracks for me before, and he is good – thanks, David.  Chris Gregory made the journey down on Thursday to stand in for Ruth, who was judging WD; she only laid 3 tracks but in the conditions worked very hard - thank you, Chris.  And finally, Ruth Cahill - what a star!  Not only did she organise all the tracking land (the week before she took David and me to see all of the ground so I knew exactly what it was like), she organised B&B for me and the other judges, the base and a lot of the help needed, and then she judged WD over 2 days; oh, and for 3 days laid the last set of tracks – thanks, Ruth.

What can I say about this next person, Sue Jones?  Apart from being a good friend for many years she is an excellent search steward and C/A scribe.  At Oxford last year she stewarded for me and this year was there again.  Sue knows how I work and I think we work well together; she is also good company, so thank you, Sue (and Pete for bringing you to the trial).

Tracking was on stubble and mud.  It wasn’t easy, there was only the odd footprint which was no help to anyone.  It was freezing cold and to be honest the 10 nosework qualifiers can be proud of their dogs - they worked really hard.  I designed the start of the track so the handler would have to trust their dog because as soon as they got to the end of the first leg the track layer, search steward and myself stood by the start pole which meant that they were tracking back towards us; a lot of handlers didn’t believe their dog and really struggled with that part, especially Lindsey Poole. Her dog was desperate to follow the leg but she wasn’t having any of it, insisting that it couldn’t possibly go that way.  This went on for quite a while and I almost said to her, "It does go that way, shut up and follow your dog", but fortunately I didn’t have to, as finally she said, "Go on then", and off she went to do a beautiful track. 

The track articles were big; the first was a piece of green cloth 4" x 2", the second was a 3" piece of green hosepipe and the third was a 7" piece of willow stick.  The first and last were not easy to see, so the dog had to find them.  Conditions beat all the dogs that didn’t get round; it was pretty awful.  However, the nicest day was Friday and we thought this was going to be good.  How wrong can you be?  Out of eleven dogs not one qualified. 

On control day the weather was nice although a bit cold.  We had a fabulous control field and I set what I thought would be a straight forward test - if your dog could do it, you qualified.  Not a lot of heelwork, sendaway was straight out to a boundary 160 paces away for 5 marks, recall halfway and stop them for 1 mark and redirect 100 paces left to a boundary for 4 marks.  Then we had the jumps; it was heelwork up to the clear and then more heelwork up to the long and then a bit more up to the scale; none of this heelwork was marked, I just wanted the dog to be under control.  After the scale it was the speak; on this all I wanted, was to see if your dog could speak after doing all the other exercises.  Leave your dog with me at a pole, not tied up, walk to a second pole 12 paces away, stand with your back to your dog; if your dog stayed in position and barked 10 times you got 5 marks, if it moved half way you lost half a mark, if it joined you at the other pole and barked, you only lost 1 mark; as I said all I wanted was to hear your dog bark.  We had 7 dogs with 5, 2 dogs with 4.5, 1 dog with 4 and 1 dog with 0.  So I think that my overall test was a nosework test with a fair for everyone C/A test.   Val Upton failed the nosework so offered to do a run through of the control test on the Friday and then also go on first on the Saturday.  It was a great help, so thank you, Val.  After the control had finished we did the stays.  Unfortunately, after the stays had finished there was a bit of confusion and I was told that Tony and Isla had won the ticket, so I told him.  However, after we got back to base we discovered that in fact there was a tie with both Isla and Gyp on the same marks and so there would be a run off track between his 2 dogs.  Tom had laid 3 run off tracks earlier and so off we went.  Gyp completed his track with 2.5 articles and then Isla went on but missed the second article, so I called Tony off as he couldn’t beat Gyp’s score.  So to the results:

1st Tony Lockyer with WTCh DOUBLE TOP AT HARTSHILL, CDEx – TDEx, WSD, D, 211.5, winning the TD Ticket and Q TDEx after a run off.  A nice steady track only losing 7.5, which considering conditions is good; he got 3 and 4 with a full mark square.  On his control he only lost 1 mark on the sendaway and got full mark jumps, which he was pleased about.  I think this was Gyp’s 16th Ticket - what an honour and a privilege to be able to judge probably the best TD dog ever and certainly the best handler ever.  Good luck at this year’s KCC’s, Tony.

2nd Tony Lockyer with WTCh LAWINICK COME N GET IT AT HARTSHILL, CDEx – TDEx, GSD, B, 211.5, winning the reserve Ticket and Q TDEx.  Another excellent performance from Tony and Isla, missing that 2nd article on the run off track being the only thing to separate these 2 dogs.  Tony is the man to beat; it’s up to us all to improve and give him a run for his money.  Well done, Tony.

3rd  Lindsey Poole with VOMKYNA DIAZ, CDEx – WDEx, GSD, B, 204, Q TDEx.  And also winning the Best Nosework Award with 160.5/165.  I have never seen a dog drag someone around a track the way Remy did - she was brilliant. Lindsey didn’t want to track back towards us at the pole but Remy did and eventually Lindsey went with her.  As she passed us she said, "Perhaps I should follow my dog."  I think we should all do that sometimes.  She did a nice control round but no redirect and no clear jump cost a lot.  Lindsey was really tearful at the end when she realised she had got TDEx; it was well- deserved and a pleasure to award her with her certificate.  Well done, Lindsey.

4th Len Newman with SALLY BELL, CDEx – TDEx, WSD, B, 200, Q TDEx.  Did a nice track, only losing marks at the start of the track.  Control was not too bad but no speak was costly; full mark jumps.  Well done, Len.

5th Mike Williams with MARINA BEN’S PAL, CDEx – TDEx, Cross, B, 196.5, Q TDEx.  As always, nice nosework and a steady control round.  Well done, Mike.

6th Mark Lewindon with MANPOL SPIRIT AT BRACOKELI, CDEx – WDEx, GSD, D, 190, Q TDEx.  This dog seemed to be a bit of a handful but was controlled well by Mark.  To be honest, I was a bit worried how he would be in the stays, but he was left in a flat position and never moved a muscle.  Mark, I am glad you did not give up with him.  Well done, Mark.

7th  Julie Skipp with ZAK OF SKIPAWAY, CDEx – TDEx, WSD, D, 177, Q TDEx.  Julie had the first track of the trial and conditions were hard, but her dog worked his socks off.  She didn’t think she would qualify but Zak had other ideas and only lost 3 marks on the control, and with full mark jumps she was OK.  Well done, Julie.

Because of the bad weather conditions before the trial started it wasn’t until the Saturday that a final decision was made to run the trial.  I would like to thank my team for not letting a bit of snow stop them helping all week and making a big effort and turning up to work in horrendous conditions, so thank you Ruth, David, Tom, Chris and Sue.  Thank you to the farmers for letting us use their land - without you there would be no trials.

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