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Dog trial season kicks off at Otara Station

THE Poverty Bay dog trial centre’s season kicked off last Friday and Saturday with a very successful Whatatutu dog trial at Otara Station.

“Day one was hot and sunny, which made it quite hard on the dogs working in the heat. The second day was overcast with showers and conditions were easier on man and beast,” trial spokeswoman Maria Jeffery said.

Rob Jeffery, one of the judges, said: “The Whatatutu courses had been damaged by landslips caused by the very wet winter, and a lot of work has gone into restoring and preparing them for the dog trial season.

“The grounds were beautifully presented and were a credit to the club.”

Maria said worthy of a mention was the straight hunt winner, Jo Waugh. It was her first open win with her huntaway dog, Guy.

“She scooped the pool by winning the maiden as well.”

Jo recorded the top points of the day across all four divisions in the straight hunt — 98.

In the short head and yard event, first and second placings went to Rod Mead with Lad and Gum.

“Rod is a long-term member of the Whatatutu dog trial club, and it is good to see the old timer still at the top of his game.”

Henry Gaddum got his season off to a winning start with a win in the long head with Ming. Gus Spence and Ben won the zigzag hunt with 97 points.

“All in all, a very successful trial with competitors looking forward to the Ngatapa trials this weekend.”

Results —

Event one, long head, judge Sheena Martin (71 runs): Henry Gaddum Ming 95 1; Leo Edginton Kim 94 2; Rob O’Sullivan Busta 93.75 3; Merv Utting Fern 93.5 4; Bob Bryson Joy

92.5, 5. 1st Maiden Bryson and Joy.

Event two, short head and yard, judge Laurence Rau (85 runs): Rod Mead Lad 93.5 1; Mead and Gum 92.5 2; Henry Gaddum Tau 91.5 3; John Foss Dell 91 4; Bob Bryson Bolt 90.5. 1st maiden Mead and Gum.

Event three, zig zag hunt, judge Robert Jeffery (103 runs): Gus Spence Ben 97 1; Brad McHardy May 96.5 2; Graeme Cook Grace 95.5 3; Colin Bayliss Bully 95 4; Anthony Hughes Joe 94.75 5. 1st maiden McHardy and May.

Event four, straight hunt, judge Leo Edginton (106 runs): Jo Waugh Guy 98 1; Matt Humphreys Dodge 97.5 2; Noddy Halley Jade 97 3; James Maher Rogue 96.5 4; Damien Macpherson Tui 96.25 5. 1st maiden Waugh and Guy.

ON TRIAL: A field of more than 150 dogs and their handlers will compete from Thursday next week in the annual J and T Hickey Charity Sheep Dog Trial at the RDA complex. Among them will be South Island champion Jo Waugh, of Matawai, pictured in action at the charity trial last year. File picture