Sun 22 Aug 2021, Thurleigh

Level 6: Judge - Justine Steele

Thurleigh Village Hall, 27 High Street, Thurleigh. MK44 2DB

Start: 9:30am
Entry Fees: £30 per dog.
Contact: Marianne Tembey

Trial Manager and Judges Reports

I’m always up for finding new and interesting search areas, so to set a L6 at Thurleigh was a privilege and I thank Marianne for the opportunity. Providing L6 tests meant I could have some fun with the scented hidden articles thus have a really interesting day watching how different teams & different personalities went about sniffing things out. These teams are my peers so I wasn’t looking to catch anyone out, more so to provide fun, interesting challenges for pups & handlers.
Starting with the first interior, I decided to place only 3 scented articles but allowed 4&1/2 mins as the area was so large. 2 articles proved simple enough for most of the teams but the 3rd, down low near a ‘put out item’ seemed to be tricky. Found ironically by only NFC Stacey and Ghost and also Pam with Willow who was unfortunate not to qualify overall, but some recompense I think to know this article indeed was nicely found.
Raising morale on the outdoor search with an unusual area to navigate was fun to watch. 5 hides starting with a ‘very early’ fooled few. Lovely to see success and smiley faces, teamwork was definitely needed here and was in abundance.
Back to inside for the final search and clearly tiredness started to affect concentration (I’m not saying if that was the dogs or the handlers!!). Perhaps the most challenging element was that 2 of the 4 scented articles were Gun Oil and altho a reasonable distance apart may well have merged a bit and finding source to both was proving a bit tricky for some, despite myself and Jane quietly willing everyone on from our ‘peering on’ positions. This was another interesting area to search and with some very satisfying and exciting ‘just in time’, all 4 correctly found searches. Many memorable searching today but worth a mention was the heartwarming relationship and understanding to know when enough should be enough with Naomi and Buddy and the wonderful delivery of that raggy reward that filled his boots…
Congratulations to everyone but especially those top end teams where the scores were separated only by WA’s and Time, slim margins determining points and prizes!
My thanks to all for a lovely day, particularly Marianne and my fabulous scribe Jane, I look forward to watching or running with you all in the future…

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