England: Elaine Hill
After winning the previous week at West Cumbria, on Saturday Thomas Longton and Oz once again swept the board at North Lancs’ final trial.
Although many competitors travelled through rain on their journey to the trial, at Lee End Farm, Quernmore, the weather remained dry with little breeze. Set over a mainly flat pasture the course had a fetch of approaching 300 yards.
As the sheep were turned out from the top right hand corner, most dogs gathered right-handed where they followed the wall. On conclusion of the left-hand drive, after the pen there was a single in the trial as the running was on packets of three sheep.
The Herdwick hoggs were tricky to handle as they could split up and they did pull towards the exhaust field gateway situated on the right of the course. George Bonsall judged the trial entry of 28 and then the nursery championship of four contenders.
With run 15, Richard Atkins took the lead in the nursery class with Dash gaining 79 points.
At 19, Thomas went ahead with Oz (Thomas Longton’s Bonny and Bruce). Prick eared Oz had a good start losing just one point from his outrun, one from his lift and one from his fetch. As the sheep pulled to the right he had a slightly wide turn and a wobble at the start of the left hand drive.
In addition he had minor deviations over the remainder of his driving where four points in total were deducted. One sheep broke and went around the pen before Oz secured them at a loss of three points. Finishing with a clean single Oz scored 90 points which gave him a clear lead. For his good work at the four trials he took the nursery aggregate trophy.
In the novice class Angela Hughes had a good run with Tim at three and set the standard gaining 84 points. Their score stood top until Arthur Temple ran Jan (R.D. Lambie’s Jaz and Craig) at twenty five.
Jan had a faultless start before losing just two points from her fetch. As she slipped her sheep at a drive obstacle and was off-line 12 points were deducted from her driving. Losing one point at the pen before finishing with a clean single gave Jan the advantage and the winning novice score of 85. David Whitehead and Omega Tom (D.G. Lightfoot’s Nell, J.E. Lightfoot’s Cap) won the novice aggregate.
At all four North Lancs trials there has been a good number of new handlers and six ran on Saturday.
Second to the post, Claire Settle and Jess had good outfield work, but unable to pen they scored 68 points. At five, Rachael Gornell and Zoe had a good start.
They lost points over their driving before having a clean pen to score 76. They stood top until at 26 Victoria Graham ran Pip (J. Burrow’s Dot and Tan). After a clean gather, Pip lost one point from her lift and three over her fetch.
Being off line over the cross drive and a wide turn after the last obstacle cost eight points. With just one point lost at the pen Victoria and Pip took the title with a single point advantage. In addition they won the new handler aggregate trophy.
As several competitors were absent due to lambing it was decided the top four nursery dogs on the day would compete for the championship. Thomas and Oz were drawn to run first.
Following a clean start Oz dropped two points from his fetch. His four sheep wanted to split up over the cross drive and caused a slightly wide turn after the last obstacle.
Five points in total were deducted from his driving. Two sheep put their heads up the side of the pen before Oz put all four in. One point was lost at the pen before a clean shed resulted in the winning score of 92.
After winning at Windermere and West Cumbria this was Oz’s third championship title. Last to run Richard Atkins and Dash had a clean start and finish. Losing four points from their fetch and fourteen over their driving where they turned their sheep in front of the first drive obstacle, they were the runners up on 82.
The Northern Association held a charity open trial on Saturday, near Kirkby Stephen where Martin Andrews judged the entry of 65. Set over a large flat field the gather of almost 400 yards was mostly taken left handed as the dogs had much further to go 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 hard to put into the pen which 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) late 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 good run, but slipping their sheep at the cross drive obstacle cost them the title and they were the runners up on 85.
On Sunday the North Westmorland Society held a charity open trial in memory of Stephen Relph. From entry fees, sponsorship and donations £377 was raised on the day bringing the total amount raised from the six trials to more than £2,000.
This year the money will be donated to a prostate cancer charity. Alan Bradley judged the entry of 64 dogs as they worked Mule hoggs over the flat course at Greystoke. The sheep ran well which was reflected in the high scores and where only one point separated the top six dogs.
At 52, Louise Amos and Fleet (S.R. Alce’s Dot, A. Hale’s Raffe) went to the top with a very good round that scored 96 points. Two runs later their score was matched by Brian Bell and Hutch, who on an out-bye decision were the runners up.
NORTH LANCS, Lee End Farm, Quernmore, Lancaster (Judge, G. Bonsall, Slindon) Nursery (28 ran) 1, Thomas Longton (Quernmore) Oz, 90 of 100; 2, R. Atkins (Oakworth) Dash, 79; 3, R. Atkins, Meg, 76; 4, A. Salisbury (Birstwith) Lad, 73; 5, D. Fitton (Blackburn) May, 61; 6, M. Glasgow (Stodday) Mist, 45. Nursery aggregate, Thomas Longton, Oz. Novice 1, A. Temple (Holmrook) Jan, 85 of 100; 2, A. Hughes (Clipston) Tim, 84; 3, T. Rome (Whitehaven) Jack, 71. Novice aggregate, D. Whitehead (Edgworth) Omega Tom. New handler, 1, V. Graham (Whitehaven) Pip, 77 of 90; 2, R. Gornall (Garstang) Zoe, 76; 3, C. Settle (Bacup) Jess, 68. New handler aggregate, V. Graham, Pip. Nursery championship (4 ran) 1, Thomas Longton, Oz, 92 of 100; 2, R. Atkins, Dash, 82; 3, A. Salisbury, Lad, 77; 4, R. Atkins, Meg, 67.
NORTHERN, Kirkby Stephen, Cumbria (M. Andrews, Wharton) 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.
NORTH WESTMORLAND, Greystoke, Penrith, Cumbria (A. Bradley, Crosthwaite) Stephen Relph Memorial Charity Open (64 ran) 1, L. Amos (Co. Galway) Fleet, 96 of 100 OLF; 2, B. Bell (Hamsterley) Hutch, 96; 3, L. Cowper (Threlkeld) Spot, 95 OLF; 4, R. Watson, Ricky, 95; 5, D. Scrimgeour (Wigton) Finn, 95 OLFD; 6, S. Perello, Rap, 95.
Stephen Relph Memorial Rosebowl for Aggregate over the six trials, R. Hutchinson (Littledale) Sweep.
The trial was sponsored by Jim Walton Penrith, raising £377 for prostate cancer, the total over the six trials amounted to more than £2,000.
April 9. HOLMROOK, Opens am and pm trials, signed off the A595 at Holmrook, Cumbria, 8.30am start, enter on field. WEST COUNTRY, Nursery, driving then Maltese cross, Trethern, Delabole, 10am start, enter on field.
April 17. HOLME Easter Monday open and brace, Clough Head, Grane Road, Haslingden, Lancashire, 8.30am start, enter on field by 3pm, cafe on site.
Scotland: Sine Robertson
A smart and clean finish from Lotta Magnusson’s Kate ousted two very close competitors at Invergarry.
Michael McNally and Finn set the standard with the first run. A slight overshoot at the top followed by a steady course with minor variations from line and a clean chute seemed to put Michael in an unassailable position. Difficulties at the shed made the run more vulnerable.
Peter Martin’s Jen was a touch short at the top but her fetch and drive were similar to Finn’s. A small break at the chute and shed put the two runs level on points, and a run off seemed likely.
Late in the day, Lotta and Kate destroyed that prospect.
Kate, was a touch short at the top, slightly affecting her lift, and ran a similar course, but a clean finish put her ahead of the field.
A good drive gave Kevin Howlett’s Fly the edge over a closely contested field at Cashlie.
The Cheviot hoggs were tricky in the morning, improving later, but were hard to keep on line on the fetch and on the first leg of the drive.
Fly ran out and lifted cleanly, managed the sheep well on the fetch and drive and achieved a clean chute. An error at the shed threatened the good work on the course, but when the split came off successfully, Fly earned first place.
INVERGARRY (Judge, E.C. MacKinnon, Lochcarron) Open (59 ran) 1, L. Magnusson (Ardormie) Kate, 93; 2, M. MacNally (Invergarry) Finn, 92 Outbye; 3, P. Martin (Glenlyon) Jill, 92; 4, J. McKillop (Fort Augustus) Joe, 86 Outbye; 5, A.D. Carnegie (Comrie) Groesfaen Nap, 86; 6, A Lehtio (Finland) Rhy, 84. Local, 1, M. MacNally (Invergarry) Finn; 3, J. McKillop (Fort Augustus) Joe; 3, J. McKillop (Fort Augustus) Straid Sam; £665 raised for RSABI.
CASHLIE (A. MacKenzie, Lochearnhead) Open (57 ran) 1, K. Howlett (Muthill) Fly, 89; 2, S.L. Davidson (Sandbank) Gillieglen Queen, 88 Outbye; 3, L. Magnusson (Ardormie) Kate, 88; 4, A. McCulloch (Dalmellington) Risp, 87; 5, A.D. Carnegie (Comrie) Linburn Rook, 86; 6, W. Wright (Laurencekirk) Kate, 85.
GREAT GLEN (Judge, R. Tulloch, Knocknagael) Confined nursery (7 ran) 1, M. MacNally (Invergarry) Tarff, 86; 2, M. MacNally (Invergarry) Ash, 24; 3, J.H. Weir (Appin) Sweep; 4, S. Cameron (Fort Augustus) Tweed, 50; 5, R. Campbell (Inverlochay) Jill, 48; 6, A. MacIntosh (Spean Bridge) Nina, 47; Confined Older Dogs (7 ran) 1, J. McKillop (Fort Augustus) Straid Sam, 98; 2, J. McKillop (Fort Augustus) Joe, 93; 3, M. MacNally (Invergarry) Finn, 78.
April 8. IORWERTH DAVIES MEMORIAL, Penclyn Farm, Modrydd, Libanus, Brecon, LD3 8ND. Open national, two sessions, catering, pre-entry by telephone, contact Kevin Evans, tel: 07814 139 347/ 01874 625 582.
April 14. BODFARI Bwlch Isaf, Bodfari, Denbighshire, LL16 4HS. Open national and class two, two sessions, catering, start 7.30am, pre-entry, contact C. Rundle, tel: 01745 710 470/07557 380 047.
April 15. BODFARI Open national, start 7.30, pre-entry, contact C. Rundle, tel: 01745 710 470/07557 380 047.
April 28. GARNDOLBENMAEN A’R CYLCH Dolwgan Isaf, Local class, classes three and four. Start 4pm, entry on field, contact M. Griffiths, tel: 01766 530 834/ 07876 552 285.
April 29. GARNDOLBENMAEN A’R CYLCH Open national and class two, two sessions, catering, start 8am, contact M. Griffiths, tel: 01766 530 834/ 07876 552 285.
April 29 LLANGADOG AND DISTRICT Old Racecourse Fields, on A4069 towards Llangadog. Two sessions, open national, catering, start 7am, pre-entry, contact C. Price, tel: 07815 289 410/ 01550 740 506. Eye testing at trial, contact Claire Ridge, tel: 07773 192 283.