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Venue: Dunholme



Tracklayers: Andrea Lynd and Janette Sayer

Search Steward: Jenny Henton

C/A Steward: Andrea Lynd

First I would like to wish a speedy recovery and best wishes to Barrie James.  I would also like to thank the society for asking me to judge and Chris Bell for doing a great job keeping everything running so smoothly.  A very big thank you to Pat Quinn for putting me up in her beautiful home for the night, and thank you to the lovely ladies in the kitchen for all their hard work.

A huge thank you to Andrea Lynd and Janette Sayer for laying my tracks perfectly; a special thanks to Andrea for jumping in at the last minute, even with a bad leg, to steward my control round.  Thank you also to Jenny Henton for laying my squares just as I asked.

Last, but not least, thanks to the competitors who made it a great couple of days.

1st Malc Snowden and STARDELL SIRIUS, 180.5, Q.  Also won the trophies for the best track and best member.  Lovely track to watch on the worst day, together with a tidy control round, getting a well-deserved first place.

2nd  W J Pearce and WOOLSHAN JONKA, 175.  What a lovely round - a pleasure to judge.  This dog worked his socks off, you should be very proud of him.

3rd Mary Braybrook and GAMEHEART ABERAHAMA, 150.5, NQ.  What a cracking little dog; unfortunately missed out the last leg of the track but what a little star.  Well done.

4th Graham Taylor and GERONIMO BATES, NQ.  An absolutely beautiful track but today he found the jumps a bit much for him.  I’m sure it will all come together soon - good luck in the future.




Track-layers: Joe Craft, Steve Smith, John Philips and Chris Bell (one spare on Friday)

Square Steward: Glenys Page

Control Steward: Steve Smith

Sandra and I accepted the invitation to judge the CD and WD stakes at Lincoln some time ago and were looking forward to the challenge.  We had both prepared our tests when, unfortunately, a week and a half before the trial, Sandra’s Border Collie, Kyte, was struck with epilepsy.  Having spent a week with the local vets and Royal Veterinary College, we considered it unfair for him to face the upheaval of immediately going away in the caravan.  Sandra, therefore, in Kyte’s best interests, reluctantly withdrew from the judging commitment and stayed at home.  That was it - I was on my own!!  Whilst I often muse about Sandra constantly reassuring me that I haven’t been struck with deafness - I felt that I had lost my right arm and was apprehensive about the prospect of not having her to bounce thoughts off.   I needn’t have worried though - Chris Bell has put a very good team around himself to run the trial.  As soon as I arrived, I realised that I had the support of Richard and Theresa Musgrave, Glenys and Brian Page, and the others involved who immediately put me at ease.

The tracking land was fairly immature rape on soft ground that was not sticky but left a good footprint.  I set a track pattern consisting of fifteen legs that was, in total, a few paces short of 900 yards.  The articles were a green plastic milk bottle top and a 2" square piece of grey/green carpet at the end.  Joe laid the early tracks on all three days and Steve the second set.  John laid the end tracks and spares on Thursday and Saturday with Chris laying the spare on the Friday.  All of the tracks were laid perfectly and in a way that gave the competitors the best chance of getting round. 

The first day was quite dry but very cold.  The ground was still soft but did not pick up on the boot.  On the Friday, it had rained heavily and the ground was quite a lot wetter but still did not get sticky.  On Saturday it rained for most of the day and the farmer had moved a bird scarer into the middle of the first tracking field to reduce some of the awful damage being caused by the pigeons.  We managed to work around it with one track lost because I thought that it would have been unfair due to the timing of the reports and proximity to the machine.  Most of the dogs either completed the track or a fair proportion of it.  Only three dogs appeared to experience real difficulty tracking on the rape. 

The square articles were a 150mm long metal pin approximately 10 mm in diameter, a piece of grey electric flex approximately 80mm long, a 50mm cube of wood and 60mm square piece of green cloth.  Glenys laid the squares on all three days and was great company.  The squares were so well laid that I knew exactly when the dogs had detected and homed in onto articles.  I was surprised that only six teams recovered all four articles with only two achieving full marks.  Most teams recovered the wood and cloth, but the metal appeared to be difficult on the first day and the cable appeared less easy to locate on the other two days.  Twelve of the teams qualified overall on the nosework.

The control was on the showground and Steve Smith stewarded and stay stewarded.  Chris describes Steve as his right hand man and I fully understand why.  He was very easy to get on with, gave clear instructions, made sure that the rounds flowed - as well as doing a whole range of tasks necessary to make things work.  The teams started with the retrieve exercise.  I arranged a fairly simple heelwork pattern that moved the handlers in normal and slow pace from the start to a pole from where they executed the sendaway.  This was to a large tree approximately 120 yards across open ground.  After the sendaway, handlers returned to the start point in fast pace heelwork before completing the agility. 

Fifteen teams completed the control and agility and I was very impressed with the standard.  Five of the teams achieved full marks for the heelwork, including Joyce and Heather who came 1st and 2nd respectively.  Eight of the dogs scored full mark sendaways with only a few being drawn by a line of orange poles approximately 75 yards off to the right.  Heather was also one of three teams, with Jan Baker and Joan Snowden, who scored full marks for the control.  Unfortunately Joan’s Jess did not achieve sufficient marks for the agility section to qualify.  

Thank you to the committee of Lincolnshire German Shepherd Dog and All Breeds Training Society for the invitation to judge, and Chris Bell and his team for their hard work in running the trial. I would also like to thank Sharon Brown and Judy Meekings for running the base, making sure competitors were in the right places at the right times, recording scores and generally ensuring that everything worked well. My thanks also go out to Vicky Gurnhill, Carol Grant, Pat Quinn, Jackie Withers, Jayne Lewis and Theresa Musgrave for keeping me supplied with sausage and egg rolls and other goodies - no mean task. It is important to remember that our sport could not go on without the cooperation of farmers and other landowners and I would like to thank Charles Hood for allowing us to use Grange Farm’s land and George Taylor for the use of the showground for the control and agility. Finally, I would like to thank the competitors for entering, attempting the test and accepting my decisions with good grace. Of the 18 teams that attempted the test, eight qualified WDEx and one WD.

21 Entered, 18 ran

1st Joyce Tibbetts with Kari, VONHAUSWOLF MAUD, GSD, 195.5, Q WDEx.  Joyce worked on the third day in the rain.   Her track was a pleasure to watch - business-like, and the way that the dog identified articles on the track and laid down was very impressive.  Track 88.5 + 20 for the articles and Square 33 - overall the most polished nosework round and well deserving of the award for best track.

2nd Heather Patrick with Chuck, SHEREBRIDGE KHAOS, CDEx – UDEx, BC, 189.5, Q WDEx.  Heather also worked on the Saturday and we had a chance to chat between the track and square as we waited for the bird scarer to go off.  A very good track – 86.5 + 20 for the articles.  Chuck achieved one of the two full mark squares in a very quick time.  Well done, Heather.

3rd Steph Gordon with Tilly, TADMARTON DAYDREAMER TILLY, Lab, 185.5, Q WDEx.  Worked on Friday; unfortunately missed two short legs on the track, scoring 78.5 + 20 for the articles, then achieved the second full mark square and only dropped three marks on the control field.  Congratulations, Steph.

4th Penny Bellis with Jasmine, SHILLINGTON JASMINE, CDEx – UDEx, X-Breed, 183.5, Q WDEx.  Penny also worked on the Friday and I have always been impressed how she keeps this very lively GSD/Mali cross focused.  They achieved a very competent 86.5 track + 20 for the articles.  Unfortunately Jazz couldn’t recover the cable from the square and ended with 25.  Her control round was very impressive - a real master class in controlling a dog ‘on the edge’.  The exercises were well executed with a couple of marks lost to barking.  I know that you were delighted to have qualified. 

Also qualifying WDEx:

Eleanor Mestraud with Purdy, WOLFHART CRY HAVOC, CDEx – WDEx, GSD, 179.5.  Worked on the first day achieving 83.5 + 20 for the articles.  Purdy couldn’t recover the metal article and achieved 26 for the square.  Well done, Eleanor.

Liz Price with Oliver, LIZLINE OLIVER CROMWELL, GSD, 169.5.  Also worked on the first day, negotiating the track very competently but missing the first article.  Our hearts were in our mouths as Liz got to the end of the track where, fortunately, her eyesight didn’t fail her as she recovered the end article.  Track 83.5 with 5 marks for one article.  Oliver went on to do a very good search square achieving 33.5 marks and qualifying overall.  Well done, Liz.

Kathleen McGuckin with Charlie, CHARLIE DANCER OF COURT, CDEx - WDEx, BC, 169.  Kathleen worked on the Friday achieving 81.5 for the track + 20 for the articles.  Charlie couldn’t locate the cable in the square and ended with 27 marks for that exercise.  Congratulations, Kathleen, for qualifying.

Jan Baker with Hazel, MERRYWAY PEBBLE OF JABY, CDEx – UDEx, Golden Retriever, 167.  Hazel reached the second from last leg on the track having retrieved the first article but unfortunately went the wrong way, still scoring 72.5.  She did retrieve the four articles from the square for 30 points and only dropped a half mark on the control field on the clear jump - an excellent control round!  Well done, Jan, for qualifying.  

Qualifying WD:

Eva Robards with Caya, TARNEDGE COLUMBINE, Lab, 157.  Eva and Caya also got as far as the second from last leg of the track before going the wrong way, scoring 71.  Caya then recovered three articles from the square for 23 marks and scored 33 points for the control and agility. 




Tracklayers, Richard Musgrave, Liz Warrior, Brian Page, John Phillips.

Search Stewards, Tricia Harding, Barbara Wesley.

C and A Steward, Steve Smith.

Chris Bell and his team ran a very efficient and friendly trial which made judging a pleasure. There were 50 entries with 41 runners.

Nosework was all carried out in one large winter wheat field.  The growth was consistent but a little bit less than normal at this time of year.  The weather was cold and misty with overnight rain most days except for Saturday which was rainy all day.  Sunday was cold with the odd flurry of snow.

The track was designed to give the dogs a straightforward start and then test their ability to work a series of legs laid at an angle across the line of the drill.  Next was a section to put some length into the track and test the handlers’ confidence that their dog hadn’t missed an article yet.  The articles, (4" x 1" woven rush, orange bristles, 9" long plant stem) were all in the last third of the pattern, laid well away from corners in the direction the dog approached them and in a position which made recovery easy for the tracklayers if necessary.

The search was laid in a way which foiled the central area with three articles near the edge and one large article in the centre. The articles were a foil ashtray, drinking straw, pipe cleaner and a 4"x1" piece of a pullover.

There were 29 qualifiers after the nosework.

The control round started with heelwork followed by the jumps.  Speak was at heel whilst walking round a horse jump and then the sendaway which was 80 paces out to a wooden marker in line with the finishing point, 120 paces right to the boundary and then 150 paces left to another horse jump.

There were 18 qualifiers overall.  Best track went to Kath Woolley.

1st Sheila Tannert with STYPERSON EBONY, 205.5.  Ebony’s first ticket and well worked by Sheila.

2nd Glenys Page with WTCh BILKO’S GLORY, 203.  Also won the trophy for Best Member.

3rd Sue Ashby with WTCh THE TITAN, 201. Won the runoff for 3rd.

4th Margaret Robinson with JUST FRANKIE AT TRENTVALLEY, 201.

Also qualifying TDEx:















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