2008 Kennel Club Championships
Kennel Club Working Trial Championships
WESSEX WORKING TRIALS CLUB
Wessex Working Trials Club was honoured to be given the opportunity to host this most prestigious event. Our aim was to make the whole weekend a very relaxed and enjoyable occasion for competitors and spectators alike - I think we did just that. To begin with, the weather was very kind to us; as all who attended will know, it was mostly warm, dry and sunny.
I would like to start my votes of gratitude by thanking our main sponsors, Arden Grange for their continued support, The Kennel Club and also to Mark Skillin at WTM. Without their support it would have been impossible to stage the event. Many thanks to Anne Bussey for organising the sealed bid auction and to those of you who so kindly donated your time - you are all very generous. Thanks also to the farmers for allowing us the use of their land; their understanding and patience was as usual first class. Without their help we could not operate.
Our Judges were Rosie Jones and Nigel Hines, for PD and TD respectively; my thanks to you both for the thought and effort you put into your tests. I would like to collectively thank all of the tracklayers and stewards - I will leave it to the judges to name their individual teams. A special thank you must go to the track watchers, for this must be the worst job of all - you were all fantastic.
I suppose I should say a few words about the land we used. All tracks were laid on grass. The PD stake was held on our normal training ground, and the TD stake was held on the grass areas running alongside the runways of the disused Smeathharpe Airfield, which gave us great parking and viewing facilities. Many thanks to Lindsey for keeping the scoreboards updated and for writing the certificates so beautifully. To Margery Lee, no amount of praise is too much; she has worked endlessly producing all the pre-trial paperwork, tickets and letters etc. She also made the winners’ dog coats and the attendance certificates, which were presented to all of the competitors; these were then framed by John West, who also contacted each competitor to ensure their gilet was the right size and colour. He was also responsible for ordering the rosettes, making key rings and much more. Many thanks to Jacqui West for running the fund raising shop and for ordering all the sweatshirts etc. She was as usual in charge of catering, ably assisted by Lynne, Margery, Irene and Mary - my thanks to you all. Thanks also to Paul, Liz and John and all of the committee for their help throughout. My final thank you must go to my wife, Barbara, for all the support she has given me over the past months, for arranging the presentation table with John and for making sure that everyone’s needs were taken care of.
The evening events took place in Chard, at the Lordleaze Hotel. I would like to say a very big thank you to Robin, Diane and Tom Owen, the hotel owners, and also to their staff for making us all feel so welcome; nothing seemed to be too much trouble. Thursday evening was a casual affair, and included a doggy quiz organised by Lindsey. Friday night was Disco night, following a superb Buffet attended by 102 quests. The trial concluded on Saturday night with the Presentation Dinner and customary speeches. Many congratulations to Anne Fowler and Dave Marchant for winning the TD and PD Tickets. Good luck to you both at next years KCC’s.
TRACKING DOG STAKE
JUDGE: NIGEL HINES
Tracklayers: Tom Darby, John West
Steward: June Hines
Firstly, I would like to make a few “thank you’s” – to Brian and Barbara Riste and the Committee at Wessex Working Trials Club for organising a fantastic Kennel Club Championship. Everything, from the base, the tracking land, the control field and spectator viewing, was excellent. Full marks for finding the Lordleaze Hotel for the accommodation for everyone; it was brilliant for the evening meals and presentation dinner, with ideal walks for the dogs.
Wessex certainly have a good band of helpers, who all make you feel so welcome; thanks to the ladies in the kitchen at the base for the lovely food during the day. Thanks also to the Kennel Club for allowing me to judge at this prestigious event. I felt very honoured when I received the invitation, and grateful thanks to those who put my name forward.
I had two excellent tracklayers in Tom Darby and John West. My thanks to them, not only for being so conscientious in their tracklaying, but also for their good company throughout the trial. June laid the squares and stewarded the control in her usual efficient way. The weather was kind to us for all three days on which we worked. Tracking was on grass with 4-5 inches growth and all the fields seemed to be in good condition for working.
I set a track pattern to test the handlers’ trust in their dogs and each team acquitted themselves very well. We only lost one competitor on the track and one more with not enough articles from the square. Margaret Robinson scratched due to Lacey being unwell – I hope she’s alright now and soon competing again so that she can perhaps qualify for next year’s KCC’s.
All the teams worked well in the control exercises but two went out on the jumps, otherwise the placings would have been quite different. There was a run-off for 3rd place.
This was the last trial for two of the dogs, so I would like to wish Judith Owens-Poole’s Brody and Barry Gilbert’s Lowry long and happy retirements.
1st WTCh WAGGERLAND FLOSS, BC, handled by Anne Fowler, 207 marks.
A good all-round performance gaining 160 on the nosework, 28 on the control and 19 for the jumps. The heelwork still needs some attention and Anne’s vocabulary kept us amused! A very worthy winner – well done, Anne and Floss.
2nd IR WTCh and WTCh FIRCROFT DOON, BC, handled by Judith Owens-Poole, 200.5 marks.
Another good round from Brody and Judith in their usual professional manner. That missed article in the square would have made all the difference. Well done to you both.
3rd WTCh BRIGLEN NUTMEG, WSD, handled by Glenys Page, 199.5 marks.
A steady performance from this team and also winning the run-off. Although Glenys was nervous, she needn’t have worried as Meg just gets on with it. Well done.
4th WTCh STYPERSON BRIAR, Lab, handled by Sheila Tannert, 199.5 marks.
Sheila and Briar were in the run-off for 3rd place; the dropped article in the square was costly, Sheila, but still a good performance in all the exercises as usual.
WTCh GLENALPINE IZZIE AT DALEMAIN, BC, handled by Anne Thorpe, 197.5 marks. Well done.
CARISHILL HYACINTH, Golden Retriever, handled by Pat Parkinson, 197.5 marks. Well done, Pat.
IR WTCh TAMERRYE MARANELLO, BC, handled by Miriam Lyons, 192.5 marks. Well done.
WTCh DOUBLE TOP AT HARTSHILL, WSD, handled by Tony Lockyer 183 marks. Well done.
Congratulations to all the qualifiers, and well done to all those involved in making the this Kennel Club Championship a success.
PATROL DOG STAKE
JUDGE: ROSIE JONES
Tracklayers: Lindsey Poole and Ann Clarke
Square, Patrol and C/A Steward, and general factotum: Jean Cooke
Scribe: Paula Jaques
Acting Criminals: Ron Jaques, Colin Harrison, Jonathon Hinds, Maureen Regan, Charlie Taylor
First I must thank Brian and Barbara Riste and all their helpers from Wessex for putting on such a marvelous event. Nothing was too much trouble and the whole event ran like clockwork and was a most enjoyable experience. All I had to do was judge the competitors. Everything else was organised to perfection. My thanks to all my helpers, listed above, and a special mention for the track watchers, who also kept an eye on my dogs whilst I was away judging the nosework.
I decided to have a “story”, just to remind us of the reason behind the various exercises. Competitors were given the following instructions:
“You have been asked to assist at the site of an alleged house burglary. A person has reported seeing someone in her neighbour’s garden, appearing to throw things away. You will be taken to the area of the garden which has been marked out with 4 poles. Use your dog to see what can be found. When you have found 4 pieces of “evidence” or when you hear a whistle, you should move to the pole that is different from the rest. From there you will see 2 crossed poles. This marks the spot where the suspect was last seen. Your dog should follow his track, and recover any further evidence. In other words, go and do your search and track. I will meet you at the end and tell you how well you have done.”
The articles in the square were: a handbag, a shoe, a plastic spoon and a large metal spoon. It was interesting to watch dogs acknowledge the two large articles, but then dismiss them until the handler told them to pick them up. Dogs seemingly have a sense of size! Two dogs recovered 3 articles, the rest recovered all four.
All dogs completed the track well. Three dogs failed to find the credit card, and sadly one of these also missed the glove. As a result Anne Bussey wisely decided to withdraw.
The C/A was well performed. Two dogs failed to make it back over the scale, but otherwise there were only bits and pieces to mark. All 5 remaining dogs qualified in this section.
The quartering took place in two of the fields used for tracking. I decided to have a lock-out for this exercise. Handlers were asked to quarter three sides of the first field, then to stop their dogs at the gap in the hedge at the third corner before joining them to quarter the next field. What they were not told was there were two persons hidden in the hedge halfway down the third side. All dogs found them. They were Charlie and Jonathon. Once found they stuck to the handler like glue - I had asked them to be a bit of a nuisance, and didn’t they do well! They accompanied the handler into the next field and “helped” them to quarter it. There was a tent, a trailer, a copse and finally a shed to search. In the shed were Ron and Maureen. So finally the handler had to deal with all four hidden persons. This tested the handler’s ability to keep a cool head, as the four were all very eager to “help”. None of the dogs was bothered by the “goings-on”, but I understand some of the handlers were heard to remark, “My head hurts”!
In the afternoon we returned to the air-field for the rest of the patrol work. First came the test of courage. Handlers were asked to approach a friendly group of people, who engaged them in conversation. During the course of this one person “recognised” the dog as having been involved in searching his Nan’s garden the day before. He offered to show the handler where the rest of the “stolen” stuff was hidden, but as he was “terrified” of dogs, he asked the handler to leave his dog where it was and go with him. Once the handler had left his dog, the test of courage came from behind - 2 men with dustbin lids with chains attached. All dogs engaged with the 2 attackers, but only one went straight in and bit (Murphy, the eventual winner).
Next came the chase. Three “joggers” approached the handler, engaged him in conversation, during which Ron introduced the chase criminal (Colin). Ron and Colin then jogged away, leaving Charlie to carry on “helping” the handler. When Colin pushed Ron to the ground, the dog was sent to chase. All dogs successfully detained the criminal. On the escort back, Ron asked for help as he had been “injured”, at which point Colin turned to attack the handler. The escort then resumed with the handler having to help Ron to walk..
The recall started in the same way. All dogs recalled successfully.
At the end of the 2 days the results were:
1st WT.Ch WAGGERLAND MURPHY,
handled by Dave Marchant, 278.
N/w 106.5, C/A 32, Jumps 20, Patrol 119.5. An excellent all-round performance especially as Dave had been out of action for some weeks prior to the trial. As well as Murphy being the only dog to gain full marks on the test of courage, Dave was the only handler to find the knife hidden on Ron. Congratulations and very well done.
2nd WT.Ch GLENALPINE PHOEBE OF STARDELL, handled by Wendy Beasley, 276.
N/w 101.5, C/A 32.5, Jumps 15, Patrol 127. Another excellent performance, with easily the best patrol round. Phoebe’s quartering was almost faultless. Congratulations and well done.
3rd WTCh LATCHETTS BOSS, (after run-off) handled by Jeff Poole, 254.
N/w 97, C/A 26, Jumps 20, Patrol 111. Another good round, however missed the first article on the track and lacked a little control in the patrol round. Nevertheless a creditable performance.
4th WT.Ch JOTUNHEIM VIP, handled by Mick Tustain, 254.
N/w 91, C/A 29, Jumps 19, Patrol 115. Another dog to miss the first track article, and again lacked a little control in the patrol round. Slightly less control in the run-off decided the outcome. Again well worthy to be there.
5th WT.Ch FLYNNTASTIC RED JAFF OF TARNFORCE, handled by John Wykes, 253.
N/w 109, C/A 28.5, Jumps 14, Patrol 101.5. The best nosework, but too many marks lost in other areas.
This was obviously a once-in-a lifetime appointment, and I would like to thank everyone in any way involved in making it such a memorable event. If I haven’t mentioned you by name I am nevertheless very grateful for all your help.