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Stakes Finals of 2001 - Judges report

Pedigree Special Champion Stakes

What can one say about all the excellent dogs one has a chance of going over & judging. To end up with a winner doesn’t really mean the rest are losers, it is just on the day they had the edge. The conditions, though impressive, don’t really suit all dogs. It was hot under the spotlights in the ring for dogs, handlers, judge and my two special stewards George Morgan and Dennis Coxall.

First was the Toy Poodle Ch Aedans Double Delight, owned & bred by Miss S & Mrs B Godfrey, she is so well balanced, elegant, all poodle, sound free mover with correct rear drive. In good coat & condition. 2 Pekingese Ch Yakee a Dangerous Liaison, owned and bred by Messrs B Easdon & P Martin.

So well balanced, correct bone, great dignity in movement, large round dark eyes set beautifully in correctly shaped head, not in profuse feathering on the day. 3 Dobermann Ch Chancepixies Monopolist, breeders/owners Mr A Anderson & Mrs J Frost. Muscular & elegant, everything in proportion, free, sound mover with correct reach & drive, in lovely condition. 4 American Cocker Sh Ch Afterglow Arrabella, owner Miss S Crummey, Mrs J Grant & Mr W Cannell, handled by breeder Mike Gadsby.

Lovely head & expression, compact strudy body, muscular quarters, smooth effortless mover. 5 Old English Sheepdog, Ch Zottels You Don’t Fool Me, breeder/owner Mrs C Bailey, strong, symmetrical, well coated. Beautifully handled amongst so many super handlers.

Valerie Foss

Pedigree Veteran Stakes

A truly memorable event:- the staging and atmosphere make this a wonderful showcase for these beautiful dogs. And beautiful they were - to say I was spoilt for choice is an understatement. I kept in a first cut of 10 including the Siberian Husky, the multi titled Artic Blue Chancellor - and extremely good looking dog with the air of quality about him, and a very light easy mover; the Shih Tzu Ch/Ir Ch Jardhu The Republican arrogant in his carriage and with a lovely expression, The Akita Ch Oktumi Love Action, impressed for her balance and good rear - just a touch heavy in body on the day; the Weimaraner Sh Ch Ansona Murphy impressed with his drive and soundness.

His front and feet are still superb. The Sealyham Terrier pressed hard for a top place - at almost 13 years he is remarkable, retains his lovely head, a mouth in great condition and his coat texture and presentation were superb - to keep a terrier coat like this for so many years is a mark of dedication by his owner.

He flagged a little towards the end which just ousted him out of the top five who were - in fifth place the German Spitz Ch Ahlen Bailey’s Cream at Delgray in magnificent form, a real showman and full of quality. In fourth spot the Schnauzer Ch Khinjan American Express, a dog full of breed type and still an excellent mover. I felt he was a little heavy over his shoulders on the day.

In third spot the Pembroke Corgi the multi titled Stonecroft Second Stage - looking a picture in superb coat of beautiful rich colour. A picture of balance and a great performance to put on. Runner-up was the Beagle - Ch Perseverence of Bayard - he might not have been the most glamorous in the line up but his balance and symmetry and his impeccable movement on the day put him here. He was in gloriously hard, gleaming condition and his honesty and quality made him worthy of this spot.

There was no denying the winner in my eyes, the Papillon Ch Tussalud Story Teller - he stormed into the ring holding himself beautifully and never stopped asking for the top award. He is a beautiful model for the breed - and a wonderful veteran.

What a feast for the connoisseur - to see these dogs - and to handle them was a great privilege making an occasion I shall long remember. My thanks to Pedigree for the honour, and for their hospitality and generosity to us all.

Frank Kane

Pedigree Junior Handler of the Year

It was a great honour to be asked to judge these finals and once in the ring I thoroughly enjoyed my day. Many thanks must go to Mrs Liz Cartledge who has always been very supportive to me throughout my 20 years in dogs, and to the whole team who work so hard to ensure that this day is a great success, year in and year out.

I felt that after competing in the finals twice, and being on both sides, winning and losing, that I knew exactly how the handlers were feeling on this very important day.

Throughout the competition all handlers were only ever asked to undertake a combination of a triangle and up and down, together with showing the teeth/bite.

I was looking for a handler where I noticed the dog more than them, as juniors and their parents must remember it is a DOG show after all, and the handler should never out shine their dog.

From the original 14 handlers I selected 6. I wish I had more places I could quite easily have short listed some more.

In 1st place was a real star performer, JANE CRYER. She was smart and at one with her dog at all times, together with undertaking all requirements effortlessly. Her original dog was a Border Collie who she showed and moved correctly throughout the first part of the competition, her real test was on the change of dog, Weimaraner, not any easy breed to handle at the best of times, but with the rapport that Jane built up in the very short space of time she had with the dog you would think it was hers, and it is only people with a true naturally talent can achieve this.

I was given a piece of advise once when judging junior handling "would you want your winner to handle your dogs" and I would definitely have no problems in letting Jane handle one of mine. Very well done and good luck for the future

In 2nd place was Laura Smith handling a Parson Russell Terrier. As with Jane she handled her original dog very well, once again following my instructions. On the change over of dogs Laura was also given a difficult breed to handle, Saluki. Laura moved the dog at the correct pace, but unfortunately had a little trouble with standing the dog and on occasions had him stood like a rocking horse, and maybe a little more vocal encouragement with a strange dog would build the rapport needed. Once again very smartly dressed, just right for the occasion.

In 3rd place was Kirsty Miller handling an English Springer Spaniel. Handled her dog very well and making the best of it. Kirsty’s change over dog was a young Shih Tzu, so full of character which made moving the dog a little difficult, but Kirsty coped well, unfortunately standing the dog seemed challenging, which looked as if it unsettled Kirsty, a more relaxed and soft approach may have worked better, but I know how difficult it can be under the circumstances.

Sarah Pettit

Photo by Vince Hogan
l The Pedigree Junior Handler of the Year was Jane Cryer who won the JHA 12-16 yrs Pastoral semi-final at Richmond championship show under Dr Thomas Jakkel and is pictured here with her Border Collie and, from l -r, Mrs Frances Chapman-King, judge Miss Sara Pettit (who herself won the competition in 1990), and Mr Bill King of Pedigree.

Photo by Vince Hogan
l A packed crowd eagerly watched the judging of the Stakes finals.

Photo by Vince Hogan
l Members of the the Blackpool committee had a great time, from l- r Hilda Parkinson (Chairman) & partner Stuart, Steve & Pat Hall, Peter & Peggy Bailey (Show Manager & Chief Steward respectively).

Photo by David Cavill
l Frank Kane goes over Dennis & Jill Hadleigh’s Skye Terrier Ch Reignmakers Ringleader.