The trial was conducted in a 750 acre paddock of directly drilled new crop, a testament to modern farming techniques with its huge size and GPS accurate drill rows. When the fog began to clear revealing the huge size of this paddock, things got serious and some excellent P&S work was produced. Dogs revelled in the cool, dampish conditions and the fresh northerly breeze.
The heat between Alan Willey's Abbey (PB) and Henry Foster's Major (PD) was the spectacle of the morning. Both dogs were really going for it, ranging and quartering as hard as they could go, covering their beats in correct pointer & setter style, two white flashes cutting through the remaining fog patches, turning into the wind, straining for a competitive advantage, slamming into point, backing without a moment's hesitation, steady to wing, shot and the fall of game, accurate retrieving ... this was the sort of work one always wants to see. Andrew Melisi's Conte (PD) was another stylish goer, with its high head and eye-catching productions. But for some unsteadiness at the fall of game this dog may well have been placed. The extra temptations in a shooting field trial (the shot, the fall of game, the retrieve/seek dead on a bird shot seconds before) are the criteria that separate the Closed Season non - shooting trial format from the Open Season shooting format, and a dog that can handle both formats well is indeed a tough & worthy competitor.
Such was the case today, with Alan Willey's Closed Season Field Champion Abbey coming through to win. No dog was going to be her match on this day as she produced 6 times in her two runs, retrieved flawlessly, backed in a flash and consistently took the front running - a tough competitor indeed. This was the first win ever by a Western Australian dog in a Victorian P&S field trial.
John Nash Memorial Field Trial 2009 placegetters. Judge: Barry Oliver
Winner: Alan Willey's F Ch (CS) Ywurrie Rani PB (Abbey)
Runner up: Henry Foster's F Ch (CS) Koram Kris at Innistona (Imp Ire) NFTW (CS) PD (Major)
Third: Taner Ozsehitoglu's Gamemaster Evans ISD (Brandy)
Click HERE to see photos of the John Nash Memorial Field Trial 2009