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Championship Trial
Venue: Oakwood Hill
Trial Held: 14 July 2012



Steward: Beryl Kimberley

10 entered, 9 ran, 4 qualified

My thanks to Surrey DTS for the invitation to judge the Introductory Stake at their Championship trial; this is the first time I’ve judged this stake and I thoroughly enjoyed the experience.  Thank you for extending me this honour.  I was surprised at the standard of some of the dogs, they were working so well, they would have held their own in CD and beyond.

No trial runs without a band of helpers and I would like to thank those involved in this trial, before, during and after.  Kitchen had a whole army of people and the food was delicious; thank you to Dorothy, Beryl, Joyce, Judith, Jane, Sally and Elizabeth.   Thanks also to Ruckman’s Estate for the use of the nosework field and the Cricket Club for the base and control field.  Stan Ford managed the trial and Chris Brooks had the title of "base steward".  I think we all know that she’s much more than that - thank you both.  Out in the field I was privileged to have Beryl Kimberley stewarding, putting competitors at their ease and offering valuable tips and hints to competitors old and new; thank you, Beryl, for being such good company, I hope your leg didn’t suffer too much.

The four articles were a small reindeer toy approx 3.5" x 2", a yoghurt pot, a piece of yellow rope 8" long and a flat wooden plant label 8" x 1".  Sendaway was 25 yards to a pair of crossed poles with ribbons on them, set against a hedge.  Heelwork was kept very simple, in part due to very wet conditions underfoot.

1st TOBIAS COLLIER, WSD, "Toby", handled by Graham Blake, 100, Q.  I’ve never given full marks to anyone before, but I would have given this team more if I could.  An enthusiastic young dog, very nicely handled.  Graham, I don’t think you realise just how good you are as a team - on today’s performance Toby is very ready for CD.

2nd GUNWAHRF JACK, Lab, "Monty", handled by Bob Burns, 94, Q.  A very nice round with Bob getting the best out of Monty today.  Well done, Bob, I know that Monty can be a "challenge" on occasions.

3rd SHELTYSHAM SO ESOTERIC, BC, "Eric", handled by Diane Whiting, 91, Q.  Diane managed to control her nerves today to put in a very professional looking round with Eric.  Not only qualifying Intro but also CDEx, well done!

4th TRAMELLA TIPSI, GSD, "Maddie", handled by Karen Cullen, 89.5, Q.  A very stylish GSD who would have had a near perfect round apart from the down stay.  I’m sure this team will go far; good luck, Karen.




Square and Control Steward: Caroline Ashford

Blazing July and the prospect of judging at Surrey was irresistible.  But the weather for last year’s event was atrocious and this year’s was not going to be any better!  So, as we prepared, I went through my summer trials checklist - waterproof clothing, wellies, weatherproof writer, pad and pencil etc...  Whatever the weather, we were always going to enjoy the experience, the only issue being what clothing to wear. 

Sixteen teams entered the stake with fourteen attempting the test.  They started with the control round conducted on the cricket field behind the base.  Our thanks must be given to the Cricket Club for letting us use the field, despite the rain that could obviously have led to the ground being damaged.   I was very mindful of this and concentrated the heelwork patterns and recall on the drier part of the field and limited the risk of damage by setting heelwork patterns that were sufficient to assess dogs’ capability but short, so as to avoid damage to the ground.  Fortunately, after two days with both CD and the Introductory stake using the field, it remained fairly intact and I didn’t even have to move the jumps.  The sendaway was 45 yards to three crossed poles set in the boundary fence.  Most of the dogs competently completed the control round.  Unfortunately, the jumps proved more challenging with only one dog achieving sufficient agility marks on the Friday, and some of the dogs working on Saturday also struggled. 

The nosework was executed on a grass field with a growth of between three and twelve inches and quite a few boggy areas.  Whilst Caroline laid the squares, I stewarded the retrieve.  This was completed just inside the gate on an area selected that had little growth and a dry area at which handlers could aim their dumbbells (mainly successfully and I only had to duck once!!).  Whilst it meant a lot of walking for me, all of the handlers had the same ground upon which to complete the exercise.  The square articles were a knotted piece of cloth, a shotgun cartridge and a knotted piece of cord.  Only three teams did not recover all three articles.

I would like to thank the Surrey DTS Working Trials Section Committee for the invitation to judge. Stan Ford is an extremely experienced trials manager who is great company and makes it look easy.  He is well supported and complemented by Christine Brooks who works hard in the background.  Thanks to you both for organising an efficient trial and working magic by scheduling the four stakes around limited land available for C/A.  We were well supplied with food by the army of Joyce, Beryl, Judith, Dorothy, Jane, Sally and Elizabeth in the kitchen.  They even provided a window service while Caroline and I awaited competitors delayed who were also competing in the Introductory Stake.  Thanks to Caroline who did everything possible to help competitors relax, drove me between the control and nosework fields, gave clear instructions and was great company over the two days.  Lastly, thanks to the competitors who entered  and accepted my decisions.  In the end two teams qualified CDEx and one CD. 

1st Hilary Mercer with Rana, STARDALE RANA, BC, B.  A very lively young bitch that Hilary did well to control.  Worked on the Saturday and a worthy winner qualifying CDEx on 94.

2nd Diane Whiting with Eric, SHELTYSHAM SO ESOTERIC, BC, D.  Di did well to steer this dog through the exercises.   A very competent round without fuss and qualifying CDEx on 93. 

3rd Heather Shaw with Blade, DESERT PRINCE, GSD, D.  I know that Heather has worked hard with this lively dog and did well to achieve sufficient marks to qualify in each section; but unfortunately, his exuberance proved a bit costly.  A well deserved third place qualifying CD on  79.5. 

4th Bob Burns with Monty, GUNWHARF JACK, Lab, D.  Bob is doing very well with Monty and it will only be a matter of time before he starts to succeed with him.  Unfortunately his barking and a little distraction cost him on the agility and lost the qualification.  Keep it up, Bob, and I look forward to seeing you and Monty again soon.  NQ on 87.




Tracklayers: Lauren Marlow, Mick Tustain and Stan Ford

Square Steward and Scribe: Kate Wykes

PD Steward: Karen Warner

Criminals: Andy Baker, Emma Baker, David Barker, Dave Clark, Richard Cornwell, Tom Davis, Mark Lewindon, Gary Martin and Mick Tustain

Thank you to the Society for asking me to judge my first PD ticket.  Kate and I were well fed and watered by the ladies in the kitchen, Sally Baker, Dorothy Bowen, Beryl Kimberley, Judith Owen, Elizabeth Stapleton and Jane Wood.  Thank you to Chris Brooks for running the base.  Thank you to Stan Ford for running the trial.

9 dogs entered, 8 dogs ran.  We started on Friday with the nosework and immediately we lost four, three of whom decided to go home, so that left five to do the C/A and patrol round.  We started on Saturday morning with the control round and lost another one, so went into the patrol round with three left. 

The round started with the chase, the criminal walking out from the fence giving verbal to the handler who then challenged the criminal; the criminal on reaching a post then turned and ran away from the dog and handler, who was instructed by the steward when to send the dog.  The detention of the criminal by the dog was out of sight of the handler, who joined his dog when signalled to by me; there then followed a casual search and an escort back across the field to where the quarter started from.  The handlers were instructed to send their dogs across to the hedge then down the hedge to a predetermined point; on reaching that point they then had to direct their dogs across the field to another hedge and then back up the hedge to where two criminals were hiding in a gateway - both dog and criminals were out of sight of the handler.  After the dog had located and barked at the criminals the handler was called up to take charge; there then followed a search of the criminals, (one of whom had a weapon) and the location, and the criminals were then escorted back across the field on a predetermined course.  At a certain point another criminal came into the field and at the same time the attack on handler took place, and it was up to the handler to deal with the situation - the escort then continued to the start of the test of courage.  The test of courage consisted of one person challenging the dog and handler, then going back behind a building, at which point the handler was instructed to send their dog; when the dog went round the corner of the building it was confronted by four people with cardboard boxes which it had to get through to bite one of them; the handler had meanwhile been brought up by the steward to deal with the situation.  When I was satisfied that this had been done we proceeded onto the recall.   The recall was a repeat of the chase, which meant that the dog and criminal were out of sight of the handler when signalled to recall the dog. This ended the test, which was carried out with varying degrees of success by the dogs and handlers.

1st and CC Lee Payne with WTCh LITTLE ROUGH RHINESTONE, X, D, 260.5, Q.  Congratulations on the qualification and winning the ticket.  Good luck at the KCC’s.

2nd Ruth Cahill with VOMKYNA DEIKA, CDEx, UDEx, WDEx, TDEx, PDEx, GSD, B, 231.5, NQ. 

3rd Dave Marchant with WTCh WAGGERLAND MURPHY, WSD, D, 208, NQ.

Thank you to all the competitors for entering under me and for accepting all my decisions.  To those who qualified - well done; to those who didn’t, better luck next time.

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