Top dog Dan helps John bring home the silverware
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.