Top dog Dan helps John bring home the sil­ver­ware

The Oban Times - - Farming -

BREEZY con­di­tions with the odd sharp shower failed to de­ter dogs and han­dlers at South Knap­dale Sheep­dog Tri­als.

Warmed by hot rolls, soup, tea and home bak­ing, spec­ta­tors en­joyed some ex­cel­lent shep­herd­ing skills at Crear Farm, Kil­berry. On a rel­a­tively flat in­bye course with ex­cel­lent vis­i­bil­ity, 51 dogs and around 30 han­dlers com­peted through­out the day un­der the ea­gle eye of judge Neil MacEachern from Dunoon.

The dogs had to fetch three grey­face gim­mers from a start­ing post 400 yards away. The fi­nal task was to shed one sheep away from the oth­ers and all this within a 10-minute time limit. The sheep were con­sis­tently tricky to pen and needed to be worked firmly but calmly.

After seven hours of com­peti- tion, the judge found his over­all win­ner in John Casey, from High Du­nash­ery, Tayin­loan, and his four-year-old dog, Dan. Kieran McCul­lough from Tay­val­lich won the lo­cal sec­tion.

The £ 300 raised from cater­ing at the event will go to a char­ity sup­port­ing the school­ing of or­phans in Zim­babwe. The Pe­land­aba Or­phan Fund pays the school fees of or­phaned chil­dren around Pe­land­aba, a sub­urb of Bu­l­awayo.

The trial it­self ben­e­fited from the pro­ceeds of a well-stocked tombola stall.

At the pre­sen­ta­tion of prizes, South Knap­dale Sheep­dog Tri­als So­ci­ety chair­man Chris Ste­wart thanked the Lith­gow fam­ily for gen­er­ously host­ing the tri­als and pro­vid­ing the sheep for the event.

So­ci­ety sec­re­tary Louise Cur­tis added: ‘It has been a re­ally good day, with an ex­cel­lent en­try. The com­mit­tee would like to thank all the com­peti­tors and spec­ta­tors, as well as our spon­sors – Dal­ri­ada Ve­teri­nary Surgery, Danny’s iron­mon­gers and Har­bro.’ Re­sults were as fol­lows. 1, John Casey (Dan) 90/100; 2, Chris Toner (Tick) 88; 3, Stu­art David­son (Queen) 87; 4, Mike McNally (Finn) 86; 5, Peter Martin (Jill) 86; 6, Lotta Mag­nus­son (Kate) 85; 7, Mosse Mag­nus­son (Davey) 83; 8, Stu­art David­son (Hope) 81; 9, Mosse Mag­nus­son (Tom) 80; 10, Chris Toner (Sam) 80.

Camp­bel­town’s An­drew Ron­ald goes for the per­fect pen.

Far left: Louise Cur­tis, Lady Cather­ine Weir and Mary Sem­ple of­fer ser­vice with a smile as they feed the hun­gry shep­herds; and win­ner John Casey with Dan.

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