Tue 26 Oct 2021, Shottery

Levels 3 & 5: Judges - Janet Wykes & Sue Gardner

Shottery Memorial Hall, Hathaway Lane, Shottery, Stratford upon Avon, CV37 9BL

Start: 9.15am
Entry Fees: £25 per dog.
Contact: Sue Gardner sue-gardner@sky.com

Trial Manager and Judges Reports

I need to start by thanking our amazing judge Janet for coming and helping us on our first all day trial at Shottery, along with the amazing LDTC team, special mentions to Jackie, Lisa, Gill, and Kathy, we have an amazing team which makes my job as trial manager so much easier.
The venue turned out to be excellent, with many comments from competitors on its suitability.
As Janet has said, I judged the interior on level 3, and we started with table & chairs. As well as a hide on a chair, the perimeter was hidden in a small wooden box which had individual draws, this caused no problem with nearly all the teams finding both hides, the fastest time being Kate and Tali the eventual winners.
Boxes and luggage caused more problems, 3 teams finding both items, Kate and Tali, Lisa and Finney and Debbie & Sundae. Some teams just not seeing the blue bag which held the second scent of gun oil.
Congratulations to our winners and those teams that gained their excellence today: –
Level 3
1st – Kate & Tali – Excellence
2nd – Lisa & Brew
3rd – Debbie & Sundae
4th – Julie & Jess – Excellence
Level 5
1st – Ian & Bond
2nd – Stacey & Ghost – Excellence
3rd – Jackie & Kona
4th – Sue & Fern

Sue – Trials Manager

Many thanks to Sue Gardner for inviting me to judge at their first trial in Shottery Memorial Hall, Stratford Upon Avon. This was a great venue with good indoor facilities, plenty of parking, and some interesting opportunities for the level 5 trial.
A special thanks to my scribes for the day, Jackie Hodge and Lisa Finney who did a fantastic job; and to Kathy Fitzgerald and Gill Robinson who helped ensure the day ran smoothly.
A white dog was used for all searches.
Level 3
I co-judged the level 3 with Sue, and we had 6 competitors. I took the exterior searches and we started off with three vehicles. The gun oil was placed on the left front edge of the wheel arch of the first car and the cloves was placed in the right door sill of the third car. We had 2 teams that found both hides (Kate & Tali and Lisa & Finney – well done). The gun oil was the hide that was missed the most, this could be due to it being a newer odour to the dogs but it was also evident that the wind was swirling in that area and although many of the other dogs were clearly picking up the odour they were focusing their search on the adjacent ‘blank’ car. Some dogs did pick up odour at the opposite front wheel arch of the first car, and a special mention to Kate who read Tali’s interest in trying to crawl under the car beautifully and immediately took her around to the other side where she located the hide. In the exterior search, we had 5 of the 6 teams who located both hides (clove on the bus wheel, gun oil on the activity toy). All of the teams worked this search really well
Congratulations to:
Kate & Tali – 1st Place. A lovely team to watch, a clean sweep and their excellence at level 3. Extremely accurate and quick searches from Tali and lovely handling from Kate. Congratulations.
Lisa & Brew – 2nd Place. A lovely partnership and another clean sweep. Brew clearly loved his searching and Lisa worked very hard to maintain his focus during the vehicle search where there were some environmental challenges. Well done
Debbie & Sundae – 3rd Place. Debbie was a very sensitive handler and read Sundae’s early interest in the scent cone beautifully, allowing Sundae to follow her nose. It was lovely to be able to watch you work together. Well done.
Julie & Jess – 4th Place. Another great team who also achieved their excellence at level 3. Well done.

Level 5
We had 8 competitors for the level 5 and following the briefing we started with interior 1. This was a small collection of rooms (entry, hallway and toilet) where we had 4 hides. Gun oil was placed in the cupboard door in the ladies toilet, and in a door frame in the hallway; with cloves on the back leg of a sofa and on the mat in the entry room. 5 competitors found all hides and gained their bonus points. Two competitors missed the sofa leg and one the mat. Ian and Bond carried out a super search and found all 4 hides in only 100 seconds!
For the exterior search, we used a section of the car park (garage and walls) and had 3 hides. Clove hides were placed on the car park wall and the hinge of the garage door; with gun oil on a metal bracket close to the boundary alongside the garage wall. Five competitors found all three hides and gained their bonus points. The metal bracket was missed by three teams as the handlers didn’t notice this close to the boundary. Sue and Fern had an incredible search and found all three hides within 80 seconds, well done.
For the second interior search we used half of the hall and had 5 hides (cloves on the floor boundary step, on a metal corner protector, and on the chair leg within a stack of chairs; gun oil on a bench seat and in the corner by the start line). Two teams found all 5 hides within the search time (Ian & Bond and Stacey & Ghost – well done). There was no particular hide that was missed more frequently but some teams did make the decision to work their dogs on line and this did prevent them searching so freely in the time allowed. Ian & Bond and Stacey & Ghost were an absolute joy to watch, both dogs being given the freedom to search and showing boundless energy.
Congratulations to:
Ian & Bond – 1st Place. What a great team to watch and full marks achieved. Bond clearly loves this game and his exuberance in the second interior search is still making me smile today. It is lovely to see Bond get so much from this sport and you read his indications perfectly. Congratulations.
Stacey & Ghost – 2nd Place. Another lovely partnership and full marks. Ghost is another dog that has great enthusiasm in her searches. Stacey handled her beautifully and ensured that as a team they covered all areas of the search. An absolute pleasure to watch and great to see you gain your excellence at level 5, well done.
Jackie & Kona – 3rd Place. Some lovely work from this partnership and it was great to see how Kona responded well to your requests for detailed searching when required. Well done.
Sue & Fern – 4th Place. Some super-fast and accurate searches for this team with an unbelievable external search. Well done.
A special mention to Paula & Bonnie Jazz and Gill & Sybil that also qualified, well done.
This was a really enjoyable trial to judge with fantastic competitors. I hope you all enjoyed it.
I look forward to seeing you all continue to progress on your Scentwork journey

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