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Gundog challenge won with a twist

Helen Crick from Cheshire has won a Gundog Challenge dedicated to the memory of the late Lord Lichfield, with Twist her springer spaniel.

The Lord Lichfield Memorial Gundog Challenge took place at the British Association for Shooting and Conservation (BASC) Game Keepers Fair at Catton Park, Catton Hall in South Derbyshire and involved gundogs and handlers from all over the country successfully competing in four events over two days to win.

Helen completed the events, which consisted of a five blind retrieves, one long retrieve over a 50 yards course, a two dummy retrieve and an obstacle event, with her bitch Twist in the best time of the weekend to win.

Helen said: "I’m overjoyed that we won the Lord Lichfield Memorial Gundog Challenge, it’s nice to get our names on such a sought after trophy.

"Twist is a young dog and quite small, but she worked really well, winning not only the Challenge but also five separate first places with plenty of time to spare."

The Cheshire duo won many gundog titles last year including the BASC Chudley Challenge at the Midland Game Fair, The Fastest Dog in The West at Shepton Mallet, and the Rose Marie Tudor Memorial Trophy at the Shropshire Game Fair.

They also took first place in the morning heats of what can only be described as the Grand Prix of Scurry Competitions, The Best of the Best Championship, which was held in Salisbury, which Helen finally won by Twists’ mum Fly, who wasn’t going to be outdone by her young daughter.

Gundog scurries are designed to simulate being out in the field hunting and shooting. The dog is asked to hunt and retrieve canvas bags, called dummies, these are placed in undergrowth or woodland and need to be retrieved in the quickest time possible.

There were many varieties of gundogs competing against each other in the Challenge at Catton Park including Labradors, English Springer Spaniels, Cocker Spaniels and Pointers, who all have different assets and abilities so the going was tough.

Symonds Catering, who sponsored the event, which was dedicated to the memory of the Late Lord Lichfield who was a renowned celebrity photographer, and former BASC’s President, very kindly donated the prize money.