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Dancing Brave Scoops Top Award
by Tickety Boo
photos provided by the Author

Keeperscourt Dancing Brave (Int.Ft.Ch. Rytex Ruffer of Tasco x Wyndhill Regale), a progressive young dog, owned, trained and handled by Mr. Ivan Wilson of Gortin, Co. Tyrone, proved his doubtless class by taking Top honours at the annual Fermanagh Gundog Club’s Open Stake, which was held at Gortin, Co. Tyrone, Ireland on Friday, 7th November 2003.

Perfect spaniel country, consisting of wide, rolling expanses of rush and light scrub, Gortin trials allow for a Spaniel to demonstrate his capabilities with a consistent supply of game and top class gunning. With suitable trialling venues at a premium nowadays, thanks is extended to Mr. Ivan Wilson and the local landowners for yet again putting on a successfully run event. Run under perfect hunting conditions, fifteen spaniels vied for that elusive 1st place and entry into the up and coming British Any Variety Spaniel Championships, which this year are being staged on the Castle Douglas Estate, Scotland.

Judges on the day were Mr. Jeremy Organ (England), ably stewarded by his wife, Jill, and Mr. Harry McComish (North Ireland). Credit where credit is due; the Judges showed some very positive judging throughout the Stake, giving every Spaniel handler present opportunity to demonstrate what their dogs were capable of. Jimmy Wilkinson, Chief steward of the day, did his usual expected fine job of marshalling the proceedings.

The trial kicked off along a narrow private road, bordered by a steep tree-lined gully. Birds flew readily and finds were aplenty. First in under the judge was Mr. Willie Chambers and his eye catching bitch, Hillside Bramble (Ft.Ch. Millshadow Aster x Sally’s Secret). Bramble was soon in the thick of things, and picked a difficult bird that had lodged itself beneath the lip of an over hanging bank which edged a narrow brook. A particularly nice going spaniel, Bramble is seldom out of the awards. Consistency is the name of her game. She no doubt will get her day, eventually. It was no surprise to many that she ran a fine third!

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