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7 – 9 February 2014

Cappanargid, Co. Kildare






Tracklayers: UD - Jeff Poole, Jenny Hickey and Steve Fearon; WD - Jeff Poole; TD – Steve Fearon

Square Steward: All Stakes - Riona Kilbride

CD, UD and WD C/A Steward and TD Scribe: - Riona Kilbride.


I would like to thank the Border Collie Club of Ireland for the invitation to judge their championship trial this weekend and also thank Judith and Jeff Poole for their hospitality; Elaine and I enjoyed our stay with you. Judith works nonstop preparing meals and feeding everyone, so a special thank you to Judith. Of course, trials wouldn’t happen without the co-operation of the land owners and I would like to thank the 2 farmers for the use of their land; they are Bernard Connell and his brother David Connell.

All work was on grass and all the tracking fields were water-logged in places, but the C/A field was quite dry and caused no problems. The weather ranged from dry and sunny to rain and strong winds - we had a bit of everything but not as bad as some people have been having just lately, and in fact there was one lady who had to scratch from UD because her car was under flood water.



3 entered with only 1 working.


1st Clione O’Toole with TIME TO TANGO, BC, B, 72.5/100, NQ. Only dropping 1 mark on search and retrieve, good marks on C/A and full mark jumps but unfortunately broke both sets of stays.



8 entered with 2 teams completing the test, 1 team doing the nosework only, 2 teams who I asked to leave the field and 3 scratched.


1st Vicki Dixon with RUSTIX ALI, Mali, B, 185/200, Q UDEx. Dropped 3 on the track and 2 in the square. She had full mark jumps but unfortunately she failed the down stay, but with a superb control round, gaining full marks, she still qualified. It was a pleasure to judge this team, Vicki and Ali showing just how good they are. Well done, Vicki, and good luck for the future.

2nd Clione O’Toole with TIME TO TANGO, BC, B, 173.5/200, NQ. Again, good nosework, control and jumps but the down stay let her down. Put this trial behind you and keep training - you will get there.


It was disappointing that I had to ask 2 competitors to leave the C/A field, both experienced people, one who brought a toy onto the field despite me asking for no food or toys on the field, and the other a young dog not quite under control (don’t give up, but in fact work harder)



2 entered only 1 working.


1st Edwina Dunne with FALK VON KONGISHOF, CDEx, UDEx, GSD, D, 100/200, NQ



5 entered and 5 worked.


1st Samantha Rawson with RYAN’S DAUGHTER, TDEx, X, B, 207.5/220, qualifying TDEx and winning the Green Star. Good track, full mark square, full mark jumps and good control - this was a pleasure to judge. Good luck for future trials.

2nd Jenny Hickey with Ch and Int Ch HAPENNY KELTIC MAGIC, Jun Ch, CW08, CJW08, CDEx, UDEx, WDEx, Nov Ex, BC, B, 199/220, NQ. Only dropping 2.5 on nosework, did a good control round but failed clear, long and return over scale, however she won the best track award. Well done, Jenny.

3rd Anne Collen with ShCh ACHOUFFE FANTOME, Slovakian WH Pointing Dog, B, 176/220, NQ.

4th Judith Owens Poole with ShCh, CIB and WTCh FIRCROFT BELISIMA, Jun Ch, CJW08, CW08, CDEx, UDEx, WDEx, TDEx, Portuguese Water Dog, B, 97.5/220, NQ.







Tracklayers: TD - Steve Fearon, WD - Judith Owens-Poole, UD - again Judith with Jeff Poole,

Square Steward: Riona Kilbride.

Control Steward: Riona Kilbride

This was my 4th trip to judge in Ireland and my second for the Border Collie Club of Ireland; my first was in 2008. I’m glad to say that you would have to go a long way to beat the hospitality and camaraderie that is given in Ireland - it hasn’t changed one bit. A big thank you to the Border Collie Club for the invite and also to Jeff and Judith for all the food and accommodation for five days, for two of which I was on holiday.

Thank you to all the tracklayers for an excellent job well done - some in heavy rain, some in beautiful sunshine - and a specially big thank you to Riona for all the squares and control rounds, never once getting confused which stake and pattern was being competed for.

The Sunday was the control day and this is when the worst weather hit us, with quite strong winds and heavy rain. I’m sure that there would have been more qualifiers in all stakes, especially in CD, if the weather had been better.

Although the trials scene is nowhere as big as in the UK there are a lot of good quality handlers and dogs in Ireland - long may this continue!



1st Cliona O’Toole with TIME TO TANGO, BC, 76.5, NQ. Tango was very unlucky that the stays were in such poor weather conditions, because all of the rest of her work would have challenged for first place anywhere.



1st Roberta Bolster with EILENBURG KUKI, GSD, 116.5, NQ. Unfortunately lost the track half way round; a little more work on learning to read, Kay, and this could be a good team.

Best Track: Caroline Woods with PARAVEL JUNIPER, GSD, 105 marks . For a young dog this was a pleasure to watch. Once old enough Dekah could be competing for the Green Star!



1st Edwina Dunne with FALK VON KONGISHOF, CDEx, UDEx, GSD, 155.5, NQ. Just one article on the track would have been the icing on the cake; not only was the control round excellent but Alfie also won the best track WD trophy.



1st Samantha Rawson with RYAN’S DAUGHTER, Collie, 200.5, Q TDEx and winning the "GREEN STAR. A very good nosework round but to keep this level a little more work required in the control round. On the day, one of the few dogs to get the down. Well done and maybe see you in the UK.

Best Track: Judith Owens-Poole with ShCh, CIB and WTCh FIRCROFT BELISIMA, Jun Ch, CJW’08, CDEx, UDEx, WDEx, TDEx. Every time I see this girl work Jorja never fails to impress me, and this time was no different. A well-deserved best track - only losing six marks in difficult weather was no mean feat!








13 – 15 December 2013

Cappanargid. Co Kildare






Tracklayers: TD and WD – Steve Fearon, UD – Jenny, Judith and Jeff

Square Stewards: Jenny Hickey, Judith Owens Poole and Riona Kilbride

C/A Steward: Riona Kilbride


I’d like to thank Blanchardtown and District Club for the invitation to visit Ireland to judge at their trial, and to Judith and Jeff for their fabulous hospitality and for looking after me so well.

This is only a small trial compared to the ones in the UK but everyone takes part and contributes in some way to the running of the trial, making it a really pleasant weekend. Thank you to my tracklayers, Steve, Jenny, Judith and Jeff for laying tracks in really strong winds - thankfully though, for most part we managed to avoided the rain! Steve also provided us with some lovely soup for our lunches…scrummy. Thanks to my square stewards, Riona, Jenny and Judith for laying perfect squares and for being great company. Riona also kept me company on Sunday, doing a very professional job stewarding the control and agility and keeping everything flowing smoothly - thanks to everyone for all your help and your great company. Thank you to all the competitors for entering and allowing me to see your dogs work. Congratulations to the qualifiers and good luck to everyone for your future trials.



1st Neil Lowndes with NANA’S BILLYBOY, 91.5, Q. A well-deserved win from a lovely dog expertly handled by Neil. A very impressive control round with lovely heelwork and a full point sendaway. Congratulations.

2nd Cliona O’Toole and TIME TO TANGO, 83, NQ. Another super team just starting out in trials, and obviously going to do really well in the future, just a hiccup in the stays costing a qualification on this occasion. Well done.



1st Cliona O’Toole and TIME TO TANGO, 180.5, NQ. Super track and square in high winds which Tango didn’t appear to notice, even though we were struggling to stay upright! Again, a nice control round but the wind seemed to cause a problem in the down stay. Track 88.5/20, Sq 4/32.5, Control 19.5, Agility 20. Well done.


There were 5 teams entered the UD stake but sadly the others did not do the control round.



1st Anne Collen and ShCh ACHOUFFE FANTOME, 171, Q. Anne and Purdy also received the Best Track Trophy. This team worked in extremely high winds and gave us a real scare at one point, but managed, with some hard work, to find their way back and complete the track. Nice control and full point sendaway gave them a well-deserved qualification. Track 79/20, Sq 3/23.5, Control 33.5, Agility 15. Congratulations

2nd Denis Conlon and REGAN’S BOY. Sadly, Denis and Harley had a set back on the track, but did a nice square and went on to do a lovely control round; for such a big dog, he makes the agility look so easy. Track 18.5/0, Sq 4/30, Control 33, Agility 20. Good luck in your future trials.


There were 2 other entries in WD who did not go on to do the control round.



1st Jeff Poole and FIRCROFT CASHEL, 204.5, Q. Cash worked really well in the windy conditions, gaining the Best Track and, subject to the Irish Kennel Club confirmation, this qualification makes Cash an Irish Working Trials Champion. The conditions were not easy but Jeff’s experience and determination from Cash proved a winning combination. A slip on the wet grass at the scale had us holding our breath, but it failed to put Cash off. Track 93.5/30, Sq 4/33.5, Control 30, Agility 17.5. Congratulations.

2nd Judith Owens Poole and ShCh FIRCROFT BELISIMA, 191, Q. Judith and Jorja seemed to draw the windiest, coldest field of the trial and really struggled in some parts, but with Judith’s calm experienced handling they got to the end and with all 3 articles; this was followed by a lovely square. Track 85/30, Sq 4/32.5, Control 25, Agility 18.5. Well done.

3rd Sam Rawson and RYAN’S DAUGHTER, 194.5, NQ. Sassy worked really hard on the track and did a lovely search square and agility, but was very distracted during the control round which cost them a qualification this time. Track 86/30, Sq 4/34, Control 24.5, Agility 20. Good luck for your future trials.


There were 6 TD entries with 2 scratches and one team who did not do the control round.



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