Moray Firth Spaniel & Retriever Club Spring Test 2014

‘A wee update’ from Martyn Ryan
We held our first test of the year on Sunday 23rd March on a dry but cold day. To be honest I was staggered by an entry of near 100 spaniels and retrievers which was an excellent start to our year.Image
Prizewinners were…
Puppy Spaniel
1. Yellow Pimpernell…ess…Colin Falconer
2. Craigscourt Blackjack…ess…Gary Vennard
Novice Spaniel
1. Broomfield Lilly…ess…Graham Clark
2. Buccleuch Dale…ess…John Regan
3. Craigscourt Blackjack…ess…Gary Vennard
Open Spaniel
1. Broomfield Lilly…ess…Graham Clark
2. Rothievale Larch…ess…Jim Adamson
3. Caulichat Prince…ess…Jim Adamson



Last SDAS race in the season – from Beth and Danny Fitzgerald

“It’s the last race of the SDAS season and another great win for Danny Fitzgerald and his sled dogs at Bowland trails in Perth. He and the dogs managed first place in the 4 dog class making him the SDAS 4 dog champion. He was second in the bike class which made him second in the championship, beaten by our dog’s brother!!

It was a fantastic race with 3 stages which meant running Saturday morning and evening and Sunday morning, dogs needed to be at peak fitness and can get very tired but Danny’s team managed to be consistent with their times thanks to their training, nutrition and hydration.

This is the last race of the season. The dogs are now free to run around and play in the paddock – time to relax.”

Retriever Gundogs – Selection for Team GB by Alan Rees




On Saturday 15th March 2014, not to clash with any other events, I decided to go with the selection of a dog to represent Wales as part of Team GB at the Kennel Club International at Chatsworth on May 29th and 30th, 2014. As a consensus from handlers, and requiring a ground mirroring the conditions at Chatsworth, I decided to hold the selection on Mooreland near the Dulais Top near Merthyr. I’m indebted to Wesley Thomas for allowing us to use this fantastic, testing ground.

Due to certain pressures this season I brought Roger Phillips in to assist with the selection and the running of the day, and I would like to thank him for all his hard work. The judge was Jayne Coley, a lady who needs no introduction having won the open working test and judged the International at Chatsworth the year before; who better to assess our top dogs for what they were to be put through. I would like to thank Jayne for her contribution, fairness and leniency during the selection test, as some handlers had travelled from as far away as Anglesey.

Why not a Welsh A Panel judge you may ask? – as some have commented – Out of six A panel judges, Roger had given his commitment to assist, I made it clear that I wanted to compete, two others had made apologies as they had business commitments, one was to judge the International, so I felt looking for just one dog, relating to Team GB, not a Welsh Team, that Jayne was the ideal candidate to assess the dogs at the selection day.

A criterion was set for entry, a dog must have at least won a Novice Trial or an Open Working Test, and hence over 20 calls were made to invite the pool, of which eleven dogs started. The first stage was a static test with a mark over a wall and a short blind, both in rush; this caused the majority of dogs a problem. We then proceeded to a drive, after the drive three retrieves were to be collected, a blind across the lake, a blind out along a track and a very long mark. The water proved to be the end for three dogs, all failing to enter water. The mark proved too difficult for two dogs but the blind was achieved well by the majority. Hence we arrived at a late lunch with only four dogs going forward to the walk up exercises in the afternoon.

At this stage Craig Perry and Alan Rees were within a couple of points of each other with Nigel Probert some points adrift and with Annie Wales just behind Nigel, all to play for. The walk up was in four phases a mark, then a blind, a double element with a blind and marked diversion and then a long blind with no shot, all designed to simulate a shooting day. The come back then started, Nigel Probert achieving a maximum 100% on these tests. I had not seen anything like this since watching Billy Steel Senior years ago gaining a 100% at the Game Fair, well done Nigel.

At the end of the day – comments, all compliments flowed that the last four dogs had been superb over these tests, the ground had been testing and fantastic, and that the tests set were superb – thank you one and all for your kind comments. My thanks must go to the helpers, and all who arranged the day, and although the competition was intense the atmosphere was a credit to all concerned

The end result was a tie for first place between Nigel Probert and Craig Perry then 3 points adrift Alan Rees, and then came Annie Wales, credit to all four dogs. As this was a selection day Nigel Probert was the dog selected to represent Wales at Team GB, his six maximum scores of 20 out of a possible 20 was enough to tip the balance for me. Craig achieved two maximums, Alan with four and Annie with two.

At this level of competition there isn’t a lot to separate dogs and handlers; these were four beautiful dogs on show.

Thanks to you all.

Alan Rees.

Danehaven Detroit does it again! Crufts 2014

Kenzie1 Kenzie3 Kensie5

Danehaven Detroit (known as Kenzie) made breed history in 2010 by becoming the first Nova Scotia Duck Tolling retriever to be awarded Best of Breed that was bred and owned by the exhibitor.

He has now done it again in 2014, being only the second dog to win Best of Breed twice. 

He is 7.5 years old and was originally donated to hearing dogs for the deaf at 8 weeks old but was returned at 8 months as he did not complete the training. 

He then went on to have a successful showing career, winning seven Best of Breeds at Championship shows and several at Open Shows,before CC's were awarded to the breeds. After CC's were awarded in March 2013 Kenzie has numerous reserve Best of Breed successes and now his Crufts' win.

Kenzie has sired several litters and some of his progeny have gone on to successful show and working careers.

Clwyd Retriever Club 2013 Results

April 28th 2013 Spring Test Results


Ernie Bradshaw Trophy Winner
Scoring 79 out of 80 is Karen Vere-Hodge with Willconnor Velvet


Mr TR Dukes, Mr I Griffiths,  Mr G McCarthy & Mrs J Redpath


1st Karen Vere-Hodge with Willconnor Velvet

2nd Myles Platt with Edisbury Ebony

3rd Judith White with Minstead Delvin

4th Bill Williams with Heronsbrooke Night Owl


1st John Yarwood with Gosberry Governor

2nd Frank McAdams with Shaemas O’Rourke

3rd Gerallt Wyn with Ffynnongain Quest

4th Ken Littlemore with Middlebrook Digger

C of M’s

Judith White with FTCH Labdom Lewis of Minstead

Karen Vere-Hodge with Willconnor Velvet

Dave Gallimore with Gallifield Riverbank Flush


The Winners and Judges




First       John Yarwood                 with    Gosberry Govenor

Whitter trophy winner with 100/100


First       Wendy Tombs                           with    Chemsell  Obadiah

Second    Bob Clay                                    with    Chemsell Zinc of Oncote

Third       Harvey Jones                           with    Derramore Welsh Wizard


First         Wendy Tombs                         with    Chemsell Obadiah

Second     Kim Dutton                             with   Kenmilleven Midnight Kip

Third        Gay Hargreaves- Jones       with  Plas Wiggin Lady Wexford

Fourth      Jackie Owen                           with   Muggleswick Cha Cha of Marianbach

Certificate of Merit

Val Oakley                                                   with  Tereshenko Duke Joseph

Adrian Butler                                             with   Spartan Dan


First           Gerallt  Wyn                          with   Ffynongain Quest

Second       Alan Fryer                             with   Patanavac Wilson of Kilnbeck

Third          Jackie Mchugh                     with   Muggleswick Salsa

Fourth        Ken Littlemore                    with  Middlebrook Digger

Certificate of Merit

Harvey Jones                                              with   Minstead Ace

Harvey Jones                                              with   Ty Newydd

Vicki Stanley                                               with   Minstead Scribbs





C of M               ROZ McILROY                      AUTUMNWILLOW SCOUT




FIRST              JUDITH WHITE                      FTCH LABDOM LEWIS OF MINSTEAD


THIRD             TIM  MERRILL                       GLENANNE OAK


 C of M             DAVID FIELD                          HOONSIDE ZULU WARRIOR OF ARTISTRYN





FOURTH          HARVEY JONES                   MINSTEAD ACE

C of M              STEWART ARCH                   WOODPATH DORIS


FIRST               ANDREW JAMES                 AUTUMNWILLOW


Claire Hitchins, Eire and Flic at Crufts 2014


Eira benched

Eira and I represented Wales at Crufts in the International Freestyle competition. Performing at Crufts in front of a packed main arena crowd of 6000 people was the most amazing experience ever.  People ask me if I was nervous, but quite honestly I was just totally buzzing!


Eira CSJ qualifier

It was an early start to my Crufts day, arriving at 7am to give me chance to take Eira in to the main arena and for us both to get an idea of how big it was and all the things that might put us off.  I was mainly thinking that the big armed camera might take some getting used to but Eira was more interested in the marks on the floor (to mark the position of the agility equipment), She had to make sure they were not edible before she agreed to give her attention to me.


Eira jumping

At 11.00 we were briefed and from then it moved very quickly. The event on in the arena before us was agility and the collecting ring had a jump in it for competitors to warm up.  Eira loves agility and this didn’t help her excitement – I think she was a bit disappointed not to walk out to a full agility course!


Flic – a winner

The competitor before me sadly had to withdraw as her dog was really worried and unhappy, she kept trying to run towards the exits.  Having travelled all the way from Denmark the competitor must have been gutted not to compete but it was lovely to see her putting her dog first ra

ther than trying to make her work.

The withdrawal of the previous competitor meant that we were a bit rushed in!  The actual performance

went so quickly, every time I perform this piece I struggle to believe it is 4 minutes long because it feels like 2!  I couldn’t have asked more from Eira.


Flic – dancing

The adrenaline meant that she was even more excited than normal and that the timing and clarity of my commands wasn’t top notch either!  Leading up to the competition, she had been a bit sticky on a couple of moves, I had been practicing these moves at home and my partner said he was holding his breath in the crowd when I did them, but she was perfect.

Talking about training, I’m always asked by people ‘do I train a lot?’ I very rarely train a whole routine, I just do 5 minutes here and 5 minutes there, working on a particular move.  With Eira, once she has learnt a move it’s easy to incorporate putting it in to a routine.  The hardest bit is coming up with the ideas, music and choreography – that takes me a lot more time than training the dog to actually do it!

My scores were amazing!  Unfortunately as expected Eira barked and not just a bit – I have an ongoing issue with barking and it is sometimes worse than others. This time, she barked the WHOLE way through. The atmosphere just sent her off the scale – she must get her gobbiness from me!   The barking meant that I got some pretty hefty deductions as there is a rule that says they shouldn’t bark.


International Group

My final placing was 9th out of 10.  I would have been 5th without the barking deductions but to be honest I didn’t care where I came, the standard was phenomenal. We were up against World and European champions! I was just so pleased we put on a good performance and that Eira was happy and really showed what she could do.

I had an overwhelming amount of support and nice comments about our performance which was just wonderful and made the experience even more brilliant.  I am one very lucky girl!

Ely & District Wildfowler’s working gundog tests – Press Release

10 March 2014

Press Release from Derek Robinson

The Ely & District Wildfowler’s popular charity gundog tests will be held on Sunday 11th May 2014 at Frank’s Farm, near March, Cambridgeshire, by kind permission of Mr. Michael Deptford.

The test’s comprise of an Open and Novice run off the same stands, albeit that much more difficult for the Open dogs.   BASC are sponsoring the Open, while Ely & District sponsor the Ken Gandy novice trophies. CSJ Specialist Canine Feeds will sponsor all places in both events.  The “Derek Robinson” Team trophy is also up for grabs, being defended by last year’s winners the Kirkmarsh Flyers Irish Water Spaniel team.

EDWA welcome  both single entries and also teams of four dogs from training, breed, wildfowling clubs or shoot syndicates.  The advantage of running a team is  a slight reduction in price.  Teams can be a mixture of both Open and Novice.  Each class is automatically entered into their respective class be it Open or Novice.

This years judges are Mr. Melvyn Hurst, Mr. Dave Gresty, Miss Katie Capps and Mr. David Wilcox. Monies raised through the sale of light refreshments and from the prize draw to the Breast Cancer Trust Unit, Peterborough Hospital.

All information and  Entry Forms from Derek Robinson 07923 919202 or email:

The amazing story of Oscar and Tracy Evans

From Tracy Evans

Baby OscarOscar is my rescue GSD X Husky, he came into my life almost 5 years ago. He was 7mths old and weighed 10kg. We were his forth and forever home.   The first dog trainer we went to said he should be put down. We then found a behavouralist, started having 1 to 1 lessons and then progressed to dog training classes.

Oscar has always had lots of energy

He does Canicross and Agility he also does Good Citizen Classes and Search training to keep him busy.

After 6 months of practice, we entered our first Canicross race ran by CaniX and sponsored by CSJ. I was having problems with Oscar’s diet, as I am a Nurse, I know the importance of good nutrition for health, I was also aware that Oscar’s nutrition had been poor. He was on a diet of complete biscuits mixed with complete wet food which was the only way he would eat. We looked up our local supplier and also found a hydrotherapist. Oscar eats CP30 for tea every night; he also has Poppets, CSJ Herbs and Pemmikan for long distance races.

Thanks to Oscar, I’ve got more energy too!

When I first got Oscar I was over 13 1/2 stone, (I stopped weighing myself at that point).  But with all the exercise Oscar needed – initially only walking till he was 18 months old because of his development, I now weigh about 9 stone thanks to Oscar.

Oscar isn’t particularly fast as a Canicross dog over 5km, but he loves to run. So we decided to try longer distances and we decided to run a half marathon with some friends. We completed our first half marathon at Caythorpe on 9th march, we also entered a img001relay team for the Green Man Ultra,  running almost 16 miles over the day on the first and last leg. Oscar enjoys the longer runs and starts pulling at 6 miles.

We still enjoy our 5km races though and had a fantastic weekend at the BSSF Sled dog race in Thetford, It was our first sled dog race and we are looking forward to doing more next season. We also plan to do some Bikejor racing, now I know Oscar has more stamina than I thought.

We will be concentrating on our Agility over the summer and we have just started training with a new trainer, as Oscar is starting to enjoy the obstacles rather than just running round them. We have a couple of triathlons planned, which should be great fun. One is in April with Canicross, Obedience and Agility. There is another one in June with a short and very early run, an Obedience challenge and an open water swim for both of us.

Keep up with Oscar’s amazing adventures in his diary inside Your Dog magazine

More canicross news on our website

Danny won the 4 dog, bike and 2nd on the scooter at the BSSF World Cup

BethanpicLatest news from Bethan Fitzgerald

Danny is continuing doing well, he 
has just been to the BSSF World Cup 
and won the 4 dog, bike and second 
on the scooter and that's with Bryn 
-the one that was injured!!!

He is full of flu at the mo and is 
gutted as he has the last race in 2 
weeks and although he has won the 
4-dog championship already, he needs 
a gold in the bike this time to win the championship, we are doing 
everything we can to get his strength back - even burning tea tree 
oil as I type which is making my eyes sting!!!

I have 6 weeks left of the pregnancy, getting very uncomfy - two 
weeks in work left to go. We have an au pair from the states coming 
at the end of April, I hope she is as good as she sounds!!! She is 
a runner and loves dogs so hopefully she can help us next season 
with training too!

The plan for next season is to race at the European dry-land race 
in France and continue to compete with SDAS. I've actually convinced 
Danny to let me qualify this year for the 4 dog world championships 
in 2015!

pid1217Pepsi our pup has started training 
and Danny is very excited as she is 
just a naturally fast dog and will 
make an amazing bike dog and a young 
fast dog to drive a big team too.