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Working dogs, April 14, 2017

Two charity open trials have been held by the Northern Association near Kirkby Stephen, Cumbria, where £760 was raised for Hospice at Home.

England: Elaine Hill


Two charity open trials have been held by the Northern Association near Kirkby Stephen, Cumbria, where £760 was raised for Hospice at Home.


On Saturday Martin Andrews judged the entry of 68. Set over a large mainly flat pasture the course had a gather of almost 400 yards which was mostly taken left handed as the dogs had much more ground to cover on the right.


Towards the end of the fetch the sheep were turned at a post about 15 yards in front of the handler into the lengthy right hand drive.


The strong Swaledale hoggs appeared shy of the hurdles and were difficult to steer through them. They were also very difficult to put into the pen which on Saturday due to wet ground was situated at an angle on a bank. For those who did pen the conclusion of their trial was a split.


With a mid-morning run Ross Watson took the lead with Nidderdale Nidd scoring 84 points. Bevis Jordan ran Angel (B. Jordan’s Sage, B. Bell’s Hutch) in the afternoon. The tri-coloured bitch ran out well, had a good lift and brought her sheep nicely down the fetch. She turned her hoggs neatly around the post and kept good lines throughout her driving.


Angel handled the tricky sheep well at the pen where one tried to break but she stopped it and put all four in. Finishing with a good shed gave the winning score of 88 points. A little later Richard Fawcett and Lola also had a very good run but slipping their sheep at the cross drive obstacle cost them the title and they were the runners up on 85.


The following Wednesday Athol Clark judged an even larger entry of 80 dogs. The driving was the opposite way, to the left and as the ground had dried out the pen was moved onto the flat. Although still testing the sheep were slightly more amenable, but they would not stand pressure. Running at nineteen Alec Baines and Tanhill Jock took the lead.


After a clean left hand gather Jock lifted his sheep well and kept a very good line down the fetch. He turned his hoggs nicely around the post into the drive where again he kept good lines and maintained a steady yet flowing pace. Without any hesitation his sheep went straight into the pen. His split was the worst part of his trial. One hogg kept breaking from the other three and would not settle.


Eventually an opportunity came and Jock took it at a loss of four points to a score of 89. In the late forties Anja Lehtio had a very good run with Coel which also earned 89 points. Another polished run came in the mid-fifties when Jim Cropper and Dan gained 89 points. An out-bye decision put Jim and Dan in third place, Anja and Coel in second and gave Alec and Jock (A. Baines’ Tanhill Jess, I.B. Jones’ Tim) their first open title after a successful nursery season this last winter.


Two open trials were held on Sunday at Holmrook. The course for the morning trial was set over the bigger field which has a deep dip in the middle. With a fetch of approaching 400 yards the course was mainly gathered left handed. Worked in threes the Texel cross hoggs were variable with some packets needing to be pushed while others were more flighty. Alec Baines judged the entry of 38.


At 23 Jessica Saukkonen took the lead with Gannon gaining 88 points. Between a clean start and finish they dropped two points over the lengthy driving. Running late as he had been letting out the sheep, Arthur Temple and Floss (J. Fawcett’s Nan, A. Owen’s Roy) had an almost perfect round. Floss could not be faulted over her outfield work. At the chute one sheep put her head up the outside of the hurdle before following the others and going through. Consequently one point was deducted which gave Floss the winning score of 89.


Across the other side of the road George Smithson judged the afternoon trial of 41 entries. This course was slightly smaller with a gentle dip in the middle and was gathered mainly left. In the main the Herdwick hoggs ran well. With a good run Sergio Perello and Murguia Jim (O. Murguia’s Beltx and Spot) took the lead gaining 87 points. Later Arthur and Floss matched their score to almost take a second title that day. However, slightly better out-bye work gave Jim the title while Floss was the runner up.


English results


NORTHERN, Kirkby Stephen, Cumbria, (Judge, M. Andrews, Wharton) Saturday Charity Open (68 ran) 1, B. Jordan (Whitfield) Angel, 88 of 100; 2, R. Fawcett (Hardraw) Lola, 85; 3, R. Watson (Millom) Nidderdale Nidd, 84; 4, D. Purdham (Holmrook) Folly, 83; 5, F. Satterthwaite (Brough) Greg, 79; 6, S. Perello (Caton) Murguia Jim, 77.

Money raised for Hospice at Home was £360.


(Judge, A. Clark, Kirkby Stephen) Wednesday Charity Open (80 ran) 1, A. Baines (South Stainmore) Tanhill Jock, 89 of 100 OLF; 2, A. Lehtio (Finland) Coel, 89; 3, J. Cropper (Deerplay) Dan, 89; 4, S. Cropper (Deerplay) Danny, 87; 5, R. Watson, Ricky, 86; 6, S. Atkinson (Waitby) Meg, 85.

Money raised for Hospice at Home was £400.


HOLMROOK, Cumbria, (Judge, A. Baines, South Stainmore) Morning Open (38 ran) 1, A. temple (Holmrook) Floss, 89 of 90; 2, J. Saukkonen (Hatton) Gannon, 88; 3, Thomas Longton (Quernmore) Jim, 87 OLF; 4, A. Lehtio, Rhy, 87; 5, S. Perello, Rap, 85; 6, R. Watson, Nidderdale Nidd, 83.


(Judge, G. Smithson, Kirkbride) Afternoon Open (41 ran) 1, S. Perello, Murguia Jim, 87 of 90 OLF; 2, A. Temple, Floss, 87; 3, R. Watson, Ricky, 86; 4, R. Watson, Nidderdale Nidd, 85; 5, A. Lehtio, Coel, 84 OLF; 6, A. Baines, Tanhill Jock, 84.


WEST COUNTRY, Launceston, (Judge, J. Tucker, Brentor) Maltese cross (11 ran) 1, J. Watson (Postbridge) Spot, 71 of 90; 2, M. Hopper (Veryan) Dot, 61; 3, C. Worgan (Chulmleigh) Layla, 58; 4, J. Watson, Huthwaite Roy, 40.

Young Handlers (6 ran) 1, M. Ridge (Chulmleigh) Mac, 45 of 90 OLF; 2, C. Fritgerald (New Forest) Del, 45; 3, L. Hopper (Veryan) Fern, 29; 4, W. Carter (Delabole) Sanduck Queen, 29.


New Handlers (1 ran) 1, L. Ireland (Veryan) Ned.

(Judge, J. Carter, Delabole) Driving (9 ran) 1, C. Worgan, Lee, 90 of 100; 2, J. Watson, Jill, 89; 3, J. Nicholls (Buckland Brewer) Rob, 87; 4, M. Evans (Holsworthy) Ben, 86; 5, J. Tucker (Brentor) Lednock Jack, 78; 6, J. Nicholls, Jen, 72.

English diary


April 15. HOLMROOK, Open and Novice, signed off A595 at Holmrook, Cumbria, 9am start, enter on field by 1pm.


April 17. HOLME, Easter Monday Open and Brace, Clough Head, Grane Road, Haslingden, Lancashire, 8.30amstart, enter on field by 3pm, café on site.


Wales: Christine Hall


A cold start gave way to beautiful sunshine for the Iorwerth Davies Memorial Trial on April 8th. Hosted by David Evans and family at Libanus, near Brecon, the course provided an interesting challenge for the dogs and handlers in their first trial of the south Wales season.


The event comprised of two sessions followed by a run-off by the two winners for the Iorwerth Davies Trophy. Ninety-year-old Iorwerth was a keen and well-respected trialler until he passed away three years ago. His family wanted to give something back to the sheepdog community that had given him so much enjoyment over the years so they set up the memorial trial with the help of the Evans family at Penclyn Farm.


The event was well subscribed with 48 pre-booked runs per session. It attracted handlers from France, Denmark and Holland as well as those closer to home.


With the high peaks of the Brecon Beacons providing a spectacular backdrop, the 350 yard outrun could be taken from either side. Both involved passing through a gateway into a second field.


Most handlers favoured the right as the dogs could be seen all the way on their route to gather the sheep. On the left hand side dogs were out of view at the crucial point where they had to be turned through the gateway. The outrun proved to be difficult for several dogs, some of whom their owners admitted were a little rusty after the long winter and recent lambing season. Most needed extra commands to arrive at the sheep, while some failed to get out of the first field and were forced to retire.


The Brecon Hill Cheviots, which were released in packets of three, held well at the top of the field. They worked consistently well throughout the day.


The fetch involved traversing a ditch and some small trees, then passing the sheep through a central gateway. The field boundary dividing the course was fenced, therefore it was crucial that the sheep had to come through the gate to reach the first field. The drive was right handed leading straight to the pen with no shed required.


In the morning session, which was judged by John Bowen, the course had to be completed in eight minutes. The winner was Angie Driscoll whose steady early morning run achieved sixteen points. Close behind her with 18 points were Angie Blackmore and Preseli Dell.


For the afternoon session, which was judged by Ross Games, the time was reduced to seven and a half minutes in order avoid a late finish. Johanna Johansson and Ztill from Denmark were the winners on 20 points, putting David Howells and Nip in second place with their 21 points.


For the final, five sheep were released and the course was extended to include a shed and a single.


Angie needed one whistle on the outrun to guide Pippi to her sheep. They did not behave on the fetch with two deciding they didn’t want to enjoy the company of the other three. It wasn’t until they were through the gate between the two fields that they began to work together. The drive went well and Pippi caught all the gates. The shed, pen and single were clean and well negotiated.


Johanna also had a very good run but missed the first drive gate when the sheep turned in front of them.


The winning pair was Angie Driscoll and Kinloch Pippi. She was presented with a carved wooden trophy made by Iowerth’s son in law. Angie said that it had been a ‘total privilege to win this trial in memory of Iorwerth who was such a nice man’.


Welsh results


IORWERTH DAVIES MEMORIAL, Session one (Judge, John Bowen) Open national, 1, A. Driscoll (Llanllawddog) Kinloch Pippi,16; 2, A. Blackmore (Ledbury) Preseli Dell, 18; 3, Y. Abery (Brecon) Glan y Gors Mona, 19 OLF; 4, J. Cremin (Ireland) Fly, 19; 5, N. Annalora (France) Jody, 20 OLF; 6, K. Haker (Llandrindod Wells) Rob, 20. Session two (Ross Games) 1, J. Johansson (Denmark) Ztill, 20; 2, D. Howells (Port Talbot) Nip, 21; 3, S. Cropper (Burnley) Beechwood Ben, 22; 4, H. Francis (Llanfyllin) Denwen Mist, 23; 4, D. Howells, Jamie, 24; 6, K. Broad (Llanlawddog) Kinloch Levi, 25. Iorwerth Davies trophy, A. Driscoll, Kinloch Pippi.


Welsh diary


April 14. BODFARI, Bwlch Isaf, Bodfari, Denbighshire, LL16 4HS, open national and class two, two sessions, catering, 7.30am start, pre-entry, contact C. Rundle, tel: 01745 710 470 or 07557 380 047.


April 15. BODFARI, open national, 7.30am start, pre-entry, contact C. Rundle, tel: 01745 710 470 or 07557 380 047.


April 22. GADFA FUNDRAISER, open national, two sessions, enter on field, 7.30am start, catering, contact R. Owen, tel: 07979 199 768.


April 28. GARNDOLBENMAEN A’R CYLCH, Dolwgan Isaf, local class, classes three and four, 4pm start, entry on field, contact M. Griffiths, tel: 01766 530 834 or 07876 552 285.


April 29. GARNDOLBENMAEN A’R CYLCH, open national and class two, two sessions, catering, 8am start, contact M. Griffiths, tel: 01766 530 834 or 07876 552 285.


April 29. LLANGADOG AND DISTRICT, Old Racecourse Fields (on A4069 towards Llangadog), two sessions, open national, catering, 7am start, pre-entry, contact: C. Price, tel: 07815 289 410 or 01550 740 506, eye testing at trial, contact: Claire Ridge, tel: 07773 192 283.