Sat 01 Jul 2023, Wichenford

Level 5: Judge - Pauline Whittaker

Wichenford Memorial Hall, Venn Lane, Wichenford WR6 6XY

Start: 1 pm
Entry Fees: £30 per dog.
Contact: Bridget Francis
– Tel: 07854375772

Trial Manager and Judges Reports

Judges Report for the Level 5 Wichenford 2.7.23
Thanks to my trial team for running the trial efficiently as always, Bridget as a fantastic (as always) TM and Nikki did an amazing job of scribing too.
We had 7 competitors, so a nice, small and friendly competition.
Interior 1
I had placed a number of items in the hall and set the search up as a perimeter which could be run from either direction. The items were mostly set as distractions to draw the dogs and handlers towards them but the odours were for the most part on the hall exterior and were missed on occasion by dog and handler who both focused on the items. The early odour on the heating pipe was found by everyone, the one on the bag was also an easy find, the one tricky one, missed by several teams was the odour on the bottom of the door frame into the toilet. There were 5 to find in this area. Extremely good start by Emma with Sula but a good start also by Hilary & Drusie, Karen and Edie and Julie and Jess.
4 hides in this area, with the wind having picked up and the field next to the search area, this was a tricky search for some. I placed one on a drain cover, one on a pathway and both of these were missed by some teams who were more focused on the wall and pillars and didn’t see their dogs’ subtle change in behaviour suggesting they were in odour. Stepping back and letting your dog work a little further away from you could have made all the difference here. Very good searches by Edie and Sula (Karen and Emma) finding all the hides.
Interior 2
I used the back door as the entrance to this search and included an area of corridor, the store room and the committee room. There were 2 hides in the store room and one in the committee room. Some of the dogs were tiring by this time, Julie took the sensible decision to train this area having had an unsuccessful exterior and I applaud that, Jess actually then worked it nicely. A couple of owners seemed to presume I wouldn’t have put two odours in the store room and having found one near the entrance didn’t check the back of the room where a second odour was on a box. There was one easy to find odour in the committee room. Again, Sula with Emma continued on fine form finding all the hides and therefore all of the hides across the whole trial.

1st place Emma and Sula
Emma stuck to her system across all the areas and it paid off, she remained calm in her handling and Sula clearly knows her job, this was a very impressive performance and I sense they will continue to do well!
2nd place Karen and Edith
A beautiful dog to watch working, who has a lovely style and allows Karen to stand back and watch, just stepping in to direct her to any missed areas. Another very good performance.
3rd place Hilary and Druisie
Another lovely team. Druisie worked confidently and Hilary demonstrated a nice supportive handling style, not overworking areas and giving encouragement as required.
Both Kate and Pam were unlucky not to qualify lovely teams but it wasn’t your day today. I loved watching Rodney work, what a character. Not quite at his best today but I hope to see him work again in the future.

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