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Venue: Ballater
Trial Held: 26 June 2011


First of all, I must, on behalf of the SWTS, thank HM The Queen for continuing to allow us to use the buildings at Inchnabobart and the land of the Balmoral Estate for our trial.  I would also like to thank Fiona Smith, the Ranger, for being, as always, so co-operative and so helpful.

(When I was speaking with Fiona after this year’s trial she told me that Inchnabobart is exclusively used by members of the Royal Family for picnics and barbecues and that we are the only other people allowed to use it. This led me to wonder about how this trial came about?  I wonder if I could suggest that anyone who knows about the origins of this trial or anyone who has memories of the early days of the trial might perhaps write something for the WTM?  I, for one, would find any such history very interesting.)

This year the weather on the Saturday was mostly overcast with sunny spells.  On the Sunday it was damp at times with clear spells, though there was some heavy rain which appeared to be at its worst over the UD tracks!  On both days there was light wind – and, mercifully!, few midgies.

Again on behalf of the SWTS I would like to express our grateful thanks to our Judges – Lol Campbell (TD), Bill Mackie (WD), Gwen Matear (UD) and Pam Cuthbert (CD).  No doubt the Judges will be naming and thanking their stewards and tracklayers in their reports but I would also like, most sincerely and most gratefully, to thank them too.  Track-layers in particular were at a premium again this year.  As usual I was depending on the regulars: Jim Jeffrey, Bill Mackie, Gary Tait and Derek McAuley – what would we do without them?  And just as I was becoming extremely stressed in the run-up to the trial, still without a full complement of track-layers with only days to go - Jenny Wood and Colin Thain answered a last-minute call and came to the rescue.  Are tracklayers given enough recognition?  There would be no trials without them!

Entries were down slightly this year and of these a few were then unable to attend – so I am very grateful to everyone, competitors and supporters alike, who did manage to attend.  Hopefully we’ll get a few more entries next year so that the trial remains viable – not just in financial terms but also in terms of the amount of work that goes in to arranging it running it.

My personal thanks go to Maureen Munro and David McPhillips for attending the base; to Helen Jones, the trial secretary, and Ann Bedford, the treasurer, for the unseen administrative work they do behind the scenes; and to David and June McPhillips for doing the scoresheets and all the other paperwork that goes along with that.

Our thanks must also go to those who contributed to the catering –  Ann Bedford, Lesley and Roy Drummer, Sheena Kerr, June McPhillips, Maureen Munro, Joyce Rae and Caroline Wright.  Again this year I lost track of all those who contributed raffle prizes – my thanks to you all for your generosity.

Finally I must also express my most grateful thanks to the catering team for doing a superb job.  The catering was again organised by my daughter, Louise McLaren, who was again helped by my long-time friend Janis Simpson.  The barbecue was this year done by another long-time friend Les Keith.  Many of the lovely comments we received about this trial referred not just to the quality of the food but to the welcoming friendliness and helpfulness of these people.

So that’s it for another year!  Once again my thanks to everyone who helped.





Tracklayers: Colin and Jenny

Steward: Helen Jones

Thanks to the Society for the invitation and to Jim McKay for a brilliant trial.  Thanks also to my steward and tracklayers for their help and great company. 

The setting for this trial is just superb and despite the rain a couple of days watching dogs and handlers tracking is a perfect way to spend a weekend.   We had some great tracks over what can be difficult ground and in heavy rain, but unfortunately the control took its toll and we had no qualifiers.

1st John Turtill and WAGGERLAND TAYOVULLIN, WSD, 184, NQ.  Tayo did a great track and control round and just missed out on the qualification on the jumps.  A great partnership.

2nd Lorraine Wilson and LEETSIDE WHIZZ KID, WSD, 178.5, NQ.  The same story for Lorraine and Millie, with a superb track and control round but the jumps taking their toll.

3rd Ann Bedford and MOORSONS BROADWAY ENCORE, GSD, 174.5, NQ.  Lexi and Ann dropped just one point on the track.

4th Joyce Rae and GEFNI EFOR EFFORT, GSD, 154, NQ.  Another lovely track.




Tracklayers: Jim Jeffrey and Derek McAuley

Steward: Sheena Kerr

I would like to begin by thanking SWTS for asking me to judge the WD nosework and C/A, and Jim McKay for being an excellent Trials Manager.  Special thanks to my steward, Sheena Kerr, and tracklayers, Jim Jeffrey and Derek McAuley, as without their dedication none of the trials would go ahead.  The kitchen staff also need a big vote of thanks, as they keep the troops going.

It was not a bad weekend weather-wise; at least the midges weren’t biting as much as they normally do!

I would like to extend my congratulations to all the competitors; even if you didn’t qualify it’s still a good weekend out, and look at it as another training day.

1st Mr N McMechan, BLACK AMEATHON, Lab X, 187, Q.  Congratulations on qualifying and winning this stake.  An excellent track and a neat and tidy control round.  Hopefully this partnership will go right to the top; best of luck for the future.

2nd Mr F Glancy, DORNHOLZ ATHOS, GSD, 169.5, NQ.  A good track, but unfortunately the control round let them down.  This is still a young dog and with time anything should come together in the end.  Well done.

3rd Mr S Hirst, TRIJEM TRUEBLUE, ASD, 165, NQ.  Again, a nice track, and the C/A round up to the scale was going well.  I am sure this is something they are working on and will be able to correct in the future.  Keep training!

4th Mr G Tait, MASTER FIELDSPAR, GSD, 101.5, NQ.  Gary and Ice had the best control round of the day – the only thing that spoiled it was the down stay.  I think we are going to need some super glue to keep Ice lying down.  The track was not as good as he usually does, either.  Better luck next time.

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