CSJ were delighted to hear from Matt Hodgson that he’d achieved Silver in the 2 dog 2 category on snow at the World Sleddog Association/IFSS World Championships in Sweden.
Matt said, “I wanted to thank you for your support, the dogs did me proud and we achieved Silver in the 2 dog 2 category – the highest placed GB adult ever on snow at a WSA World Championships!”
The event was held on 10th to 12th March and started and finished in Östersund’s famous ski arena, which also was the venue for the 2019 the Biathlon World Championship and the 2021 Biathlon World Cup Finals.
For logistical reasons the races had been moved from Ramundberget the city of Östersund where their world-class arena was able to showcase to the world the very best the sled dog sport has to offer.
Entrants were racing on excellent trails and competitors came from many countries, with Matt racing against mushers from countries including Belgium, Sweden and Italy.
CSJ say, “We are so proud of Matt’s and his dogs’ achievement. The energy expended by these fabulous Nordic breeds in these competitions is huge and the humans also need to be extremely fit and focussed – well done Matt!”
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The Ammerdown AV Test (in aid of Dorothy House Hospice) was once again held on the Ammerdown Estate on Sunday 20th March by kind permission of Sam Nickels, Scot Yorke and Dean Tayler of the Ammerdown and Owls Nest Shoot to whom we are most grateful. The Test has returned from a four year absence due to family circumstances and, of course, Covid.
The aim of the Ammerdown Test is to try and provide a low key, less pressured entry into the world of Gundog competitions for the first time competitor and a chance for the genuine novice to hone their skills. Although not a KC registered event, we follow KC guidelines as far as practical.
The low key and friendly atmosphere of the day is due entirely down to the judges. Each judge is a gundog trainer in their own right and renowned for their people skills, friendly manor and expertise in the field of gundog training. We are extremely grateful to the commitment that they all showed for the day.
Our thanks go to the jugdes: Mr Neil Varney of Twistmount Gundogs Mr Shane Leigh of Garrowwood Dog Training Mrs Sandra Blake
We are also extremely grateful to CSJ who were once again very generous in their sponsorship of awards and would very much welcome their support in the future. We thank them.
The run up to the test was more stressful than normal with a large number entrants pulling out the day before the test with covid and personal/dog related injury which meant runners were well down on previous years. We decided to add a puppy test this year. Unfortunately the puppy judge contacted very early on Sunday morning unable to attend due to a family illness which added to the fun. We are extremely grateful to Sandra Blake who did a sterling job of not only running the puppy but managing to run the retrieve for the novice as well.
The day started out in glorious sunshine, lots of nervous chatter amongst the six or so first timers. Which soon disappeared with the calm influence of the judges and support of the more experienced competitor. After a short introduction by Neil Varney of what the judges would be looking for, the day started.
The novice test consisted of a hunt up in fairly open woodland intermixed with a few rushes. The standard of hunting was very high considering the inexperience of some of the handlers. A sit to shot followed by a seen retrieve which all the dogs performed well with the odd dog running in. The hunt up continued another shot fired and a short blind was left out. This proved slightly more challenging for some of the dogs with the more experienced dogs and handlers making up points. This completed the first run. A short break and light lunch gave the entrants the opportunity to consult the judges for advice and recommendations for the second run. The test concluded with a separate retrieve alongside a cover crop which again suits the more experienced dogs who marked well and the less experienced stopping short and entering crop too early and struggling to be pushed back.
The puppy test consisted of two short hunt ups in tufty grass and sparse cover crop and concluded with a much simplified version of the retrieve. With such a wide variation of ages ranging from 7months up to 17.5 months, Sandra did an amazing job of setting and marking the test.
We retreated back to the Jolliffe Arms in Kilmersdon for the prize giving. With the excited chatter and smiling faces it looked like a good day was had by all.
Novice 1st. ESP Dog Digby — Ruby Walter 2nd. ESP Bitch Countryways Krystal—Oliver Ellis 3rd. ESP Bitch Artos—Bethany Kington 4th. Not presented COM. ESP Bitch Craiwarn Sarafina—Steve Viviash COM. CS Dog Wea Wea— Karen Fleet
Puppy 1st. ESP Bitch Alispen DIamond Nalya— David Drew 2nd. CS Bitch Zywarix July Belle—Jess Ward 3rd. CS Dog Mooncourt Black Jack—Kim Barnes 4th. CS Dog Mooncourt Herbie—Tawana Butt
We would like to thank –
All the helpers on the day Emma Wollacott, Howard Feltham ,Stephanie Milne, Christine Wilkins, Justin and especially Emilia no 1 Dummy thrower, it’s always nice to see the younger generation involved with the dogs. CSJ Specialist Canine Feeds BASC Mooncourt Gundogs KRB Services Lewis Thomas Hairdressing Lindsey from Crafty Brown Bear Designs and Embroidery for the donation of two stunning hand made and embroidered blankets Tracey Corbin for all your help and advice Jolliffe Arms, Kilmersdon
And a special mention to little Albie who carried out the best retrieve it has been my privilege to witness. With the help of you all we managed to raise £380 for Dorothy House.
This exciting event will take place at George Bonsall’s farm in Slindon on Saturday 19th March 2022, where the top 40 nursery dogs will compete for the Championship, sponsored by CSJ.
Each national team is made up of 10 dogs and their handlers. These dogs will compete over a large testing course.
Carol Mellin will be there to film and livestream the runs
Carol Mellin has set up a private Facebook group for the 4 Nations Nursery Final livestream. There is a nominal charge of £5 to Join the Group. PM Carol Mellin before the day of the trial: https://www.facebook.com/carol.mellin.501
Look out for the winning team members and the overall 4Nations Champion wearing CSJ kit embroidered with the CSJ logo in Ukrainian colours. Good luck everyone!
By Nicki Crawley, CSJ Nutrition and Technical Manager
“I had a really amazing time at Crufts. It was my first time there and I was really nervous because there were a lot of more experienced handlers than me there competing and there were so many people watching but once I got in the main arena it wasn’t so scary and then I just wanted to go and have fun with Bilbo. I really hope that I get the chance to compete there again one day!” Chloe Crawley
Nicki Crawley is our Nutrition and Technical Manager at CSJ and we were delighted to see her daughter Chloe compete and win at Crufts 2022
Well we had an amazing time at Crufts this weekend and Chloe and Bilbo won the YKC Agility Dog of the Year Small 6-11Yrs! It was such an amazing experience for her.
This qualified her to go into the final YKC Agility Dog of the Year competition in the main arena where they were up against the other age and dog height groups to find an overall winner. Sadly she got eliminated in the final as I think it was all a bit much for them both but I am pretty proud of their performance as this was the first time either of them have been to Crufts.
This photo shows them on the podium with rosette and trophy. She wore her jacket everywhere we went!
I’m sure like Karen and I you’re shocked by the scenes unfolding in Ukraine. It’s hard to believe this is happening in a European country.
As Agility Team Manager, coaches and competitors from other countries became good friends. There was a bond between us and support for each other shared through our love of agility.
I remember sharing a team room with Ukraine – amongst others, at the World Championships in Sweden. The language barrier didn’t stop us from smiling, shaking hands and acknowledging success.
People come together through sport. Sharing a common interest in competition and personal achievement together. Playing sport with animals i.e dog sports and horses, brings an extra dimension. Even stronger bonds form through our shared love for the animals and our sport.
It saddens me to think about how this conflict will affect ex-fellow competitors.
My thoughts and prayers go out to the people of Ukraine. Kind regards,