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Open Trial
Venue : Hinton in the Hedges
Trial Held: 15 April 2007

Trials Manager’s Report

It turned out to be one of those magical weekends, totally unexpected, as last time this Trial started on Friday 13th, it was the Foot and Mouth year and we had to cancel it.  So I had been waiting for something drastic to go wrong, but it never did.  Only good things happened, like we got some of our old land back, which we lost nearly 3 years ago, and we managed to run the whole of the TD stake on it.

I suppose it was the weather that made the real difference; it was hot, dry and sunny, but obviously not too hot, as the conditions were still good enough for the dogs to be able to track.  So none of the helpers got wet or miserable and the success rate was very high, which made it all worth while, and we had lots of smiley faces.

Of course we had some great Judges: Pete and Pat Hodgkins returned after 10 years and judged the TD and UD nosework respectively, the C and A was judged by Deb Williams, and the CD Stake by Stella Smyth.  Big Thank You to all of you for being such great company and setting very sensible tests. You gave everybody a chance to qualify, and those who did not qualify are definitely not yet ready.

We were overwhelmed with helpers again, and I will leave the judges to thank their tracklayers and stewards, but would like to list a few special thank yous.  First of all to our Catering Team, who ended up having to take over from Sue Lawrie at the last minute, due to a bereavement in her family.  They were Steph Gordon, Colin and Lynne Bricknell, and Mark Riley, who did the early morning breakfasts between them.  Luckily Sue had organised herself and the team very well, and she had cooked us a delicious meal for the Friday night, and had organised a rota, so big Thank You to Sue and all of you,  especially Steph and Colin, who ended up having to do a 12 hour stint in the kitchen on the Friday.  Also all the other club members who kept popping up to help out - too many to mention here by name.

Big Thank You also to Penny Bellis, who volunteered once more to do all the early morning TD tracks for the 3 days, Lynne Griffiths who ran the Base and did the Scoring also for the 3 days, assisted by Jane Webb on the Sunday.  Lynne coped very well considering she has never competed herself, but she is obviously a very good mathematician. 

Our regular escort Pat Sunderland managed to get everybody to their tracks on time, and kept all the helpers fed and watered.  John and Shirley Simpson organised the Calorgaz this year, and also helped clean the trailer together with lots of other members of our team, again too many to mention all by name.  So thank you all and can we book you all again for next year, please?!

Last but not least I would like to thank the competitors for entering our trial.  I hope you all enjoyed the trial as much as we enjoyed running it.

Carla Nieuwenhuizen


Stake: CD


Steward: John Simpson

Many thanks to Banbury for this appointment; if I am not working my own dog then watching other people work their dogs is the next best thing.  Thank you to the kitchen staff who always work so hard - love the cakes!  John Simpson was my steward for the day - many thanks for your help and company.  Thank you also to the competitors, who accepted my test without complaint.  I had ten entries with two scratched.  The weather was lovely for us, but the lack of wind on the search squares meant that the dogs had to get right over the articles to find them.  My search articles were a six inch nail, a five inch long piece of knobbly yellow plastic and a four inch long piece of black flex.  All dogs found at least one article, and no one article proved more difficult than the others.  The retrieve was done reasonably well, although there were too many extra commands and handlers moving to adjust the dog’s position on the present.

I started the C and A with the Sit Stay, but left the down until the end.  I feel that too many handlers get upset if their dog fails the first stay and then, when they do the second stay immediately after, there is a greater risk of the dog breaking that too.  One dog went down in the Sit and another stood as the handler returned – lucky the time finished while handlers were out of sight!  Both these dogs did their Down Stay with no problem, but two different dogs decided to change position, although they stayed in line.

As Open CD is beginner dogs and, often, beginner handlers, we had HOL next in the hope that both the handlers and dogs would settle down with a familiar control exercise.  This was done on three sides of a square around the jumps.  The dog was then left at the end of the heelwork and recalled to the sendaway point.  HF followed the return from the sendaway and then the jumps completed the round.

There were some nice rounds of heelwork and good sendaways.  Recall presented no great problem; only one dog anticipated although, again, there were rather more extra commands and body movements from the handlers than there should be.  The jumps took the highest toll of my competitors, with the scale giving the most problem.

Sadly there were no qualifiers at the end of the day, but we still had to have a run-off for first place.  Remind me to add the marks up as I go along in future!  We had retrieve of the judge’s article, which was a soft toy kookaburra that made a noise.  Tizer couldn’t quite believe the noise and had to shake it a couple of times to check, so the first place went to Kai.  Well done ladies and thank you for your sportsmanship.

1st     TARNEDGE POSY, (Lab) with Kelly Sear.  Overall a very competent round, just needs some polishing. Would have had all three from the square if her handler had not interfered!

2nd   BUDSHAN SOLO, (GSD) with Sue Ward.  Another competent round, just sort those jumps and you’ll be away.

3rd   GEFNI CAUGHT ON CAMERA, (GSD) with Norma Ansell.  The dog I’d like to take home!  Worked last on search and retrieve and came in with such attitude that I was sure he’d qualify and probably win.  Unfortunately throwing the sendaway and the down was too costly.

4th    ANNACOURT LUTHER, (GSD) with Jeannette Davies.  One more search article would have made all the difference!


Stake: UD Nosework


Tracklayers: Clive Griffiths and Anne Shepherd

Steward: Diana Stephens

It is 10 years since I judged at Banbury trial, so thank you to the Society for the invite to return and judge the UD nosework.  Where have the last 10 years gone?  To Carla and Jeremy, many thanks for your hospitality in your beautiful home once again – very relaxing!  All the helpers at the base deserve a pat on the back – Lynne doing scores etc. and all the kitchen volunteers, who put in a lot of effort.  The Friday meal was really appreciated, too.

Many thanks, Diana, for laying the search squares, and for being great company for the two days.  Clive and Anne laid all the tracks, and had everything worked out perfectly on the large fields, and also had a high success rate.  Thank you both.

Tracking was good to watch – super land with a lot of growth of crop and the weather was good – what more could one ask for?  Regarding the competitors – it was a pleasure to judge you and your dogs at the start of your trials career.  Good to see so many different breeds in the 22 entries.

1st     Tony Orchard and GOODREST SKYE OF TADMARTIN, (Lab).  Quincy set off on the track at a fast pace, but Tony’s experience showed in his handling, also in the square, with all articles retrieved.  Well done, and good luck in future trials.  84/20/31, Total 188.5

2nd   John Turtill and BISQUET TORRA, (WSD).  John and Torra have only recently started competing in trials.  I’m sure you have a bright future together.  A very competent nosework round.  Enjoy your trialling.  87.5/20/27, Total 187

3rd   Liz Hickman and WOLFHART TOUCH OF GOLD, (GSD).  Another good nosework qualification by Liz and Jay, a lovely young shepherd.  Good luck with her.  88/20/26, Total 185.5

4th    Judy Meekings and STYPERSON BRIG AT WINDLEBROOK, (Lab).  Super track by Judy and Brig; missing the first article made all the difference.  One of only two dogs to have a full mark search square.  Well done.  89/10/35, Total 183.5

Also qualified:

Hilary Morris and CARISHILL PARSLEY, (G Ret), 180.5

Lynne Cousins and MOORTIME NIGHT SPIRIT, (ASD), 180

Tanya Whorwood and RUSKIN SEA SHEPHERD, (GSD), 178

Roger Shrimpton and CORNDON TAFF AT GRELGANNA, (BC), 174.5

Best Nosework – Kim Astbury and BIG TROUBLE – LITTLE CHINA, (BC)

Best Track – Lindsey Poole and MORROW BILBY, (GSD)

Congratulations, Carla, on running a super, successful trial.


Stake: TD Nosework


Tracklayers: Penny Bellis, Jennifer Speake, Jane Webb

Steward: Carol Bowler

Thank you, Banbury and District DTS for inviting me to judge your TD nosework.  I had three very enjoyable days, in glorious weather, watching dogs work.  Many thanks to Carla and Jeremy for making us so welcome.  Everyone at this trial was so friendly – nothing was too much trouble.  All the helpers (catering, escorts, base, etc) did a great job.  It was a pleasure to work with you.  Well done, Carla and your team!

My tracklayers, Penny, Jennifer and Jane, and search steward, Carol, all worked hard, giving competitors every chance to complete my test.  Thank you all.

I had 35 entries, 30 ran, and 15 qualified the nosework.  Tracking was on winter wheat of good growth.  The early morning tracks each day were laid in fog (well done, Penny) and the ground was wet.  It soon became very hot, making it more difficult for the dogs.  The dogs who completed the track worked at different times of the day.

1st     Gavin Thompson and CONCENN ZANADU, (GSD).  Super track, well handled with 3 and 4, gave you a well deserved win.  This team should go a long way.  Congratulations.  Won the trophy for the Best Nosework, and Best GSD.  98/30/31, Total 207.

2nd   June Reed and ESSEX GIRL, (GSD).  Tracked during the hottest part of the day, and had to work hard to complete the track.  Good to see a rescue dog do so well.  Well done.  92/30/33, Total 205.5

3rd   Pat Parkinson and CARISHILL HYACINTH, (Goldie).  Nice track – your experience showed.  Just missed the first article, but 4 out of the square gave you this 3rd place.  Good luck in Ticket, Pat.  97.5/20/30, Total 198

4th    Lynne Davies and MISTER MISFIT MONGREL, (Crossbreed).  Another good track followed by the best search square.  Also won the trophy for best Crossbreed.  96/20/34, Total 196

Also qualified:

Joan Watkins and DURSTONE O’RILEY, (WSD), 195

John Simpson and GLENROYAL YAZ, (GSD), 194.5

Lynne Watkins and STARSHOT DOLGOS WITH SZIKRAS, (HWV), 192.5

Margery Lee and LOKI MISCHIEF MAKER, (WSD), 190

Yvonne Filleul and SODEN JAY, (WSD), 184

Fran Atkin and BRONFYNNON BRECON, (WSD), 184

Best track – Sue Jones and DURSTONE MELODY, (WSD), 99/100.  Unfortunately, only one track article.


Stake: TD and UD Control and Agility


Steward: Shirley Simpson

Thank you Banbury for inviting me to judge the UD and TD Control and Agility. To all the helpers at the base, Lynne, Jane and Pat and the excellent catering from Sue, Colin, Mark, Lynne, Steph and others, a very big thank you. To whoever ordered the sunshine weather, thank you.

My steward for the control and agility work was Shirley, who ensured all competitors were put at ease and commands easily heard. Thank you for your company and work.

There were 22 entries in UD, of which 14 completed C/A, and 35 entries in TD, of which 28 completed the C/A.

As to be expected in UD the standard varied, of the 14 dogs competing four obtained full marks in the heelwork, nine full marks for the sendaway, five full marks for retrieve and one full marks for the jumps; however eight obtained sufficient marks to qualify.  Second attempts were allowed on all jumps.  The sendaway was 65 yards straight to a hedge and was performed well by all.  Those competitors achieving full marks for the heelwork had excellent control marks and were a pleasure to watch.  At the end of the trial we had eight dogs qualifying UD.

In TD I set a straight forward round so that those dogs ready for ticket would obtain high marks, whilst those with dogs just entering TD open would be able to assess where further work was required.  I was disappointed in the heelwork with only 3 dogs obtaining full marks.  The sendaway outrun was to the same place as the UD dogs (65yds) and 18 dogs achieved full marks.  If dogs were in the general vicinity of the sendaway point, handlers had the option to either send their dogs left or right for 65yds along the hedge. If they sent their dogs left, this was to a bin and if they sent them right, this was to a farm gate.  Three dogs out of the 28 achieved full marks for the sendaway and redirection.  The speak exercise required the handlers to leave their dogs in any position on a lead looped over a pole, then take five paces and be side on to their dogs.  They were asked to get their dog to speak and be quiet and then speak and be quiet; I was expecting five barks on each speak command for full marks and thirteen dogs succeeded.  Eight dogs out of the 28 obtained full marks for the jumps.  At the end of the trial we had ten dogs qualifying TD.


1st               Tony Orchard with QUINCY, 188.5 marks.  A deserved win with an excellent C/A round from this experienced handler. Congratulations.

2nd             John Turtill with TORRA, 187 marks.  Second attempt at the long jump was costly.  A very polished C/A performance with full marks. Well done.  Best UD Control and Agility Trophy.

3rd              Liz Hickman with JAY, 185.5 marks.  Nice to watch.

4th               Judy Meekings with BRIG, 183.5 marks. Another good round.

Other UD qualifiers:

Hilary Morris with PEPI, 180

Lyn Cousins with SPIRIT, 180

Tanya Whorwood with RUSKIN, 178

Roger Shrimpton with TAFF, 174



1st               Gavin Thomson with ROSCO, 207 marks. Congratulations. Superb nosework, however do not forget the C/A work.  Won the Best Nosework and Best GSD Trophies.

2nd        June Reed with ABBY, 205.5 marks. Good sendaway and redirection.

3rd              Pat Parkinson with POPPY, 198 marks. Excellent C/A round from this experienced handler.  Best TD Control and Agility Trophy.

4th          Lyn Davies with ZEKE, 196 marks.  Well done.

Other TD qualifiers:

Marjorie Lee with LOKI, 190

Joan Watkins with O’RILEY 195

John Simpson with YAZZ, 194.5

Lynne Watkins with BRACKEN 192.5

Yvonne Filleul with JAY 184

Fran Atkin with BRECON 184

My best wishes to all the competitors and their dogs for competing in future working trials and thank you for accepting my decisions.  Last, but not least - Carla (Trials Manager), you and your helpers have a wonderful and friendly trial at Hinton in the Hedges, may it continue for many years.

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