Monday July 17, 2017

Updated: 12:15 pm Pacific time
 
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Hosted by the National Retriever Club of Canada. Daily reports, photos and drawings by Dona Martin
 
 

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The 2017 Canadian National Amateur would like to thank our sponsors, Nestle-Purina Official Sponsor of the Canadian National Open and Canadian National Amateur Retriever Championships, Official Dog Food Sponsor and the Official Dog Food Supplier to the National Retriever Club of Canada, Avery Sporting Dog, Garmin Tri-Tronics official e-collar supplier, Winchester Ammunition official ammunition supplier. Thank you as well to Ducks Unlimited Canada supplier of the finalist gifts, Zinger Winger official remote launcher supplier, and Animal Portraits by Connie Swanson for supplying portrait to the winner.

Test 1 - Land Triple With a Retired Gun

Welcome to the running of the 2017 Canadian National Retriever Championship, hosted by the BC Amateur Field Trial Club, BC Labrador Retriever Club, and the Fraser Valley Retriever Training Club. The event was being in Mission, British Columbia along the Fraser River. Majestic mountains frame the valley on either side. Some of the larger peaks are snow capped. Test 1 was set up in a cut hay field with a few rises and patches of higher grass across and behind the test. The highest cover is mostly blackberries that grow everywhere, being an invasive species that have heavy thorns and are impenetrable. The judges had to work around this hazard as it was too dangerous to even throw birds in. The temperature was 17C under clear but somewhat hazy conditions. There was a slight breeze 4 km/hr NE. We didn’t seem to be affected by all of the wildfires burning out of control in British Columbia, although the TransCanada highway was closed north of us.
 

 

Judges from left to right: Chris Brandl, Connie Swanson, Rob Littlemore
 
Test 1 was a land triple with a retired gun, shot left retired, right and then the centre go bird. Distances to the marks were; 416 yards to the left retired, 272 yards to the right and 100 yards to the centre go bird. Drake mallards were thrown at the left and centre marks and a hen mallard was thrown on the right mark. The left retired bird was thrown right to left into higher grass. White flagging tap was tied to the long left bird to make it more visible and fair to everyone. The centre bird was also thrown right to left but landed in a patch of heavier cover. The right hand bird was thrown left to right out of the test into higher grass. The test was run rom the top of a dyke and the dogs had to hold their lines while negotiating the steep bank down to the field.
 



 



 
Honorary test dog was retired FTCH AFTCH Marlan’s Kids Wanna Rock owned by Ian & Deb Montgomery and handled by Ian. Rocky was a long time competitor in Nationals, a Finalist, and top dog in Canada in 2013. After retrieving his bird Rocky came back and lined up waiting for more birds to be thrown. Guess he still wants to rock.
 



 
Female test dog was up first with GMH Prairiestorm Richrayasunshine (Raya), owned by Doug & Brenda Richmond and handled by Doug. Raya did a good job on the centre and right marks but had trouble on the long left bird. Doug wasn’t sure that she saw the left bird thrown. Raya broke down behind the centre gun station and had to be handled. Next up was Male test dog, a 4 year old golden named Go Big or Go Home, owned and handled by Jane Spearing. Driver had an almost identical job to Raya and had to be handled on the long left retired. He also didn’t appear to see the left bird thrown so a white ribbon was added to the bird to improve visibility. The test took about 8 minutes per dog.
 





 
Dog 46 started. At about half way through, there were some handles, and a pick up but for the most part the dogs were doing the test. A number of dogs hooked either the left or right gun station. The gunners at the right gun station sat facing away from their bird which caused some dogs to hunt the wrong side. As well, the wind was constantly switching and seemed to be swirling along the borders.
 
Callbacks: 44 dogs were called back to Test 2. dogs not called back, 22, 36,39.