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Open Trial
Venue: Ashington
Trial Held: 19 February 2012


I would like to start by thanking the following:- TD judge Lorna Cottier, WD judge Caroline Wright, UD judge Roy (nick my egg mayo sani) Drummer, CD judge Cheryl Savage, C/A judge Nelson Smith - you all did a first class job; tracklayers Penny Pritchard, Lorraine Wilson, Julz F, Andrea Lynd, Heather Patrick, and Dennis Nelson; stewards Avril Bryson, Adele Whittemore, Lesley Drummer, Lol Campbell, Pat Nelson and Madeleine - many thanks for your time, you were all fantastic.

Ann Bedford ran the base with her usual high standards and I am very grateful, Ann, for your time and expertise.  Doreen Wait ably assisted me in keeping the flasks topped up and getting everyone’s bait from the restaurant, as well as traipsing back and forth to the shops for milk etc.

Cheryl, myself and Betty Orrin put up everyone who needed a bed, which saved in accommodation fees this year.  Thank you to everyone, you were all great company and without your help the trial would not run – your help is much appreciated.

This was my first time as Trials Manager for Ashington and I had a great person to show me the ropes organising fields, new base etc …… John Watts – thanks, Johnny, you are a star.  Betty Orrin was always at the end of the phone, bless her; cheers honey, much appreciated.

We used our usual fields for Ashington but our base was back where it was a few year ago, and hopefully will continue to do so for many years to come.  Thanks to Alcan for the fields and to the Queen Elizabeth Country Park and Restaurant for all they did for us.

All in all the trial was a success, and now that I know what it entails it should be a doddle next year!!!!  However I do intend to tweak a few things.






Steward: Lol Campbell

Thank you to the society for the invitation to judge and to Tracey and her team for a well organised trial.  As this was my first judging appointment it was difficult to say who was the most nervous – the competitors or me!  A big thank you to Lol Campbell, my control and search steward.  He did an excellent job as he put both the competitors and me at our ease.

CD ran on the Saturday with clear blue skies and a somewhat piercing wind.  Five dogs were entered, with four competing. I had a very enjoyable day.  Thank you to the handlers accepting my decisions; unfortunately there were no qualifiers but I hope all the handlers felt that it had been a worthwhile experience.

1st Ruth Bryant with TITHELEA HARRY POTTER (Morse), 77.5, NQ.  I really did think Morse was going to qualify until the scale defeated him.  A lovely control round, only spoilt in the down stay by Morse deciding that he just had to roll and then stood up for a shake!  His heelwork was a joy to watch.  I’m sure this dog will qualify soon and we’ll see him in the higher stakes.

2nd Hannah Butters with Lynn Butters’ DAISYBOO OF BEADNELL (Daisy), 70, NQ.  Daisy did the fastest square of the day, retrieving the three articles in 42 seconds and only losing one mark in the nosework section.  Heelwork was hampered as Daisy decided to supplement her breakfast with the available sheep droppings!  Some positive results for you to build on, Hannah.

3rd Dee Marshall with MILLHARBOUR JAKE (Tai), 57, NQ.  Good nosework and a lovely sendaway, but Tai didn’t fancy the sit stay.

4th Maureen Keel with ANALEEB COURT JESTER (Quink), 51.5, NQ.  Good nosework section but Quink decided that the jumps weren’t for him.  I do like a dog with attitude and this dog made me smile.




Tracklayers: Heather Patrick and Denis Nelson

Square Steward: Lesley Drummer

Firstly I must thank NECWTS for their invitation to judge.  It was a most enjoyable 2 days and I enjoyed it thoroughly.  This was in part thanks to the team who all did their jobs faultlessly and seamlessly - thank you, Heather, Denis and Lesley - and in part the enjoyment was attributable to super contestants, who produced some delightful nose work and made it a pleasure to be there.  Finally, 2 days of sunshine made a huge difference for all of us.

There were 16 entries and 13 ran.  Track articles were a plastic door wedge and a tennis ball; square articles were a small foam paint roller, a piece of garden hose, a dolly peg and a large plastic spoon

1st Steph Roll and SASHTASTIC GIRL, 145, Q.  This was fantastic nosework throughout. Sasha did not put a foot wrong and earned a full mark track and square.  As this was only Steph’s third trial, this team must be one for the future.  A joy to watch.  Well done, both of you.

2nd Fran Mitchell with LITTLE SMOKEY, 144.5, Q.  Another excellent round with a steady track, losing only 0.5 mark and a full mark square.  Very well done

3rd Heather Cook with LOOKYLOOKY LIFE N SOUL, 143, Q.  Very steady track, just losing 1 mark as well 1mark lost on square.  Yet another good round.  Well done

4th Maureen Vaulks with INKA AT BENAIRE, 142.5, Q.  Good consistent round with just one corner of the track causing a problem.  Dropped 1.5 on the track and 1 in the square.  Well done

Also qualifying:


Brian Glasgow with RANDOLFIELD NEILA, (AK3), 128

Special Mention to the winner of the Young Handler Award, Hannah Butters with DAISY BOO OF BEADNELL, who scored 144 in her first attempt at UD.  A full mark square and only one mark lost on the track.  Well done, Hannah, I am sure you will have much success as time goes on.

To all the UD nose work competitors may I say that I wish you all well for the future and much enjoyment in your trials.




Steward: Adele

Tracklayers: Julz and Andrea

Thank you very much to the NECWTS committee for asking me to judge WD nosework at Ashington,  to Trials Manager, Tracey, for keeping me well informed and in the right place, and to everyone else whose hard work goes into organising a trial.  Huge thanks also to Cheryl and Tom for giving me (and quite a few others) first class accommodation and hospitality for the whole weekend - such wonderful company as always.  

My steward Adele Whitmore was first class and carried out my instructions to the letter - thank you, Adele.  Julz and Andrea’s experience in tracklaying and knowledge of the land was invaluable - thanks so much, ladies.

Despite the weather being more or less the same for both days (perhaps slightly more windy on the Saturday), we had no qualifiers on the Saturday and 4 on the Sunday; the reasons will only ever be known to the dogs.

To those who qualified, well done.  To those who didn’t, I expect it won’t be long before you do.

1st Fran Mitchell with BARAK BALDEMAR, WSD, D, 198, Q.  Fran’s beautifully quiet handling brought out the best in her dog - a lovely track to watch, and was the first to break the jinx of the previous day.  Well done.

2nd Eva Robards with TARNEDGE COLUMBINE, Lab, B, 197.5, Q.  Again a great track by this very enthusiastic Labrador.  Congratulations.

3rd Sheila Shearer (handled by Doug Shearer) with LEAD ON MACDUFF AT DREAGANTA, BC, B, 188.5, Q.  Another lovely track and search, well done.

4th Moira Rogerson with THREENINES KATIE, BSD, B, 178.5, Q.  Worked hard to get around the track and despite losing the last leg, went on to get the qualification - well done, Moira.




Tracklayers: Penny Pritchard and Lorraine Wilson

Steward: Avril Bryson

Many thanks to NECWTS for the invitation to judge the TD nosework at Ashington.  February in the north east means this trial tends to experience all sorts of weather so it was a pleasant surprise that whilst cold with a bit of a wind, it remained dry.

Thanks to Tracey for all her hard work as trials manager and to all my helpers who endured a bitter wind with little reward for the tracklayers.  You were all great company and we had a terrific time, despite the lack of successes.  Thanks also to Ann at the base for supervising Sam and to all who entertained him over the weekend with top trumps or ball games.

It was especially good to see John and Margaret Watts again, in fine form and looking so well.

Thanks to the competitors for entering and competing.  Whilst the cold wind didn’t help, I suspect the fact that the fields had been frequented by geese previously (who left a large number of droppings) was what caused the dogs to find it so hard.  What was impressive was the way all the dogs were committed to finding the track and not one gave up easily.

1st Dave Salisbury and PADDY OF THE NORTH, GSD, D, 140, NQ.  Very steady, methodical dog who didn’t waste energy and kept his nose glued to the ground.  Looked like he was going to be our one success story when he forgot to turn at a right angle and continued on towards the last article.  A very impressive team, though.

2nd Tracey-Lee Sinfield and TRACY’S LITTLE JEZABEL, X-breed, B, 132.5, NQ.  If there was a prize for perseverance, it would be Jez’s.  Few other teams could have worked for 20 minutes, with hardly a cast, but only complete 4 legs of the track (485 yards).  She spent so long on the track ignoring the goose muck that she couldn’t resist sampling it in the search afterwards!

3rd Tom Mills and MADAM MEG, BC, B, 121.5, NQ.  Meg seemed to be going well but hit a sticky patch just before the second article and followed something other than the track layer.  A smart full point search square followed showing she remained motivated throughout.

4th Lol Campbell and SELDOMSEEN SHEP, WSD, D, 101.5, NQ.  Was very promising to start with and filled us with hope but hit a sudden brick wall which they couldn’t get past.  Again, great attitude and the dog really persevered to get past that wall, rather than invent an alternative route.

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