2021 National Retriever Championship

September 13-18, 2021
Brighton, Ontario

National logo


LRCCO logo

Host Club

Labrador Retriever Club of Central Ontario
Field Trial Chairman: Dave Thompson
Field Trial Secretary: Darlene Broomhead
Chief Marshal: Dennis Harwood

Judges

David Wardle, Langton, Ontario
Medie Robinson, Teulon, Manitoba
Gerry Burmaster, Richards Landing, Ontario

 

 

Winner
2021 Canadian National Retriever Championship

NFTCH FTCH AFTCH Flint River’s Fifty Shades of Blue



 

Owned by Connie and Richard Dresser
Handled by Connie Dresser

Finalists



 

4
FTCH-AFTCH Renegade's Highlight Reel
Owner / Handler: Bill Kennedy
Not Available
6
FTCH-AFTCH Frr's Ray Of Sunshine QFTR
Owners: Darlene & David Broomhead
Handler: Dave Broomhead
 


13
FTCH Baypoint's Idaone QFTR-JFTR
Owner: Justin Williams
Handler: Dan Devos
 


16
FTCH-AFTCH Quackaddict Voo Doo Child
Owner / Handler: Connie Swanson
 


19
FTCH November Morning Rain JFTR
Owner: Karen Nelkenbrecher
Handler: Dan Devos
 


35
FTCH Bowrivers Where Blacktop Ends QFTR
Owners: Daniel and Laura Danforth
Handler: Dan Danforth
 


42
FC-FTCH-AFTCH Sweetwater's Ten Deuce All In QFTR
Owners: Howard Simson & Lise Langlois
Handler: Howard Simson
 


43
FTCH-AFTCH Flint River's Fifty Shades Of Blue
Owners: Connie & Richard Dresser
Connie Dresser
 


44
Creekflyers King Of The Ring QFTR-JFTR
Owners: Albert and Kathleen Gatrell
Handler: Carl Clark
 


47
FTCH-AFTCH Maplepond Piper's First Pick QFTR-JFTR
Owner / Handler: Ken Crosby
 


51
FTCH AFTCH Wingbusters Alabama Slamma QFTR JFTR 
Owners: Thomas and Margaret Murray
Handler: Marg Murray


Daily Results

 
Brought to you by the National Retriever Club of Canada. Daily reports, drawings, and photos by Dona Martin and sponsored by Purina, Official Sponsor of the Canadian National Open and Canadian National Amateur Retriever Championships, and the Official Dog Food Sponsor and the Official Dog Food Supplier to the National Retriever Club of Canada

 

 

Saturday September 11, 2021

Opening Banquet

Welcome to the 2021 Canadian National Retriever Championship. With COVID-19 restrictions in place the opening banquet took somewhat of a new format. After cancelling the 2020 National Amateur and National and the 2021 National Amateur due to COVID restrictions, the Manitoba Gun Dog Association was forced to cancel hosting this year’s National due to a drought in Manitoba. With ponds turning into mud holes, they had no option except to cancel. Luckily for us, the Labrador Retriever Club of Central Ontario was willing to step in at the last minute and offer to host the event. Not only the venue was changed from Balmoral Manitoba to Brighton Ontario, but with the change in venue, 2 of our 3 judges had to be replaced. Where there’s a will there’s a way. With COVID restrictions allowing only 25 persons to attend an indoor event, the banquet had to be moved outdoors under marquis tents.
 
While contestants were busy catching up with friends that haven’t been together since our last National in 2019, we were entertained by a live band, the Blue Rigbys with Eliot Huestis, Jesse McNeil and Kevin Huestis.



 
Bartender Chris Mason was all about service with a smile.



Party Pics


 





 
 
Master of ceremonies, Bill Kennedy introduced the head table.



After the head table was piped in, the evening quickly got underway. Judge, Gerry Burmaster led the group in singing the American and Canadian National anthems, followed by toasts to the Office of the President and the Queen, and Cheryl Ritchie offered thanks for the meal and the opportunity to bring friends together.
 


Left to right; Chief Marshal Dennis Harwood, Eastern Zone Judges Gerry Burmaster, Dave Wardle and wife Donna, Western Zone Judge Medie Robinson, National Retriever Club President Jim Andrew and wife Shiela, Field Trial Chair Dave Thompson and partner in everything retriever wife Jane.
 
After a moment of silence to honor those lost in the events of 9/11, Master of Ceremonies noted the recent loss to our Field Trial Community. Many will remember long time contributors, Cy Leclair, Gail Komadoski, Jacques Bourgois and Dr Tom Glen. Our condolences to family and friends.
NRCC President Jim Andrew



Next up, National Retriever Club of Canada President, Jim Andrew thanked our corporate sponsors, Nestle-Purina Official Sponsor of the Canadian National Retriever Championship, Official Dog Food Sponsor and the Official Dog Food Supplier to the National Retriever Club of Canada, Garmin Tri-Tronics official e-collar supplier. Thank you as well to Dakota Creek Retrievers, Kent Cartridge, and Canine Field Co. Jim presented the judges with NRCC pins in appreciation of their contribution to the success of the National. Western Zone Judge Medie Robinson and Eastern Zone Judges Gerry Burmaster and Dave Wardle. Retiring NRCC Directors were acknowledged for their dedicated work over the years as their current terms came to an end. Thank you to Jim Swanson, and Dan Yeomans. Directors and executives whose terms came to an end this year and who have agreed to stand for another term, Dan Danforth, Charlie Ross, Jim Andrew, and Jim Ling. Hope Roberts has taken over the roll of Director for British Columbia, The Executive will remain the same for 2021/22. President Jim Andrew, Vice President Dan Danforth and Past President Jim Ling. On behalf of the NRCC, Jim Andrew thanked and presented NRCC pins to the people responsible for putting on the National. Thank you to Field Trial Chair Dave Thompson, Chief Marshal Dennis Harwood and Field Trial Secretary Darlene Broomhead.
 
The 2022 National will be hosted by the Long Point Retriever Training Club in Port Rowan Ontario. More business, the Field Trial Committee will be Chairman / Chief Marshal Dennis Harwood, FT Chair Dave Thompson, Eastern Zone Darlene Broomhead, Ken Crosby and Western Zone Dan Danforth. Jane Thompson then presented the Judges with gifts from the host club. Apologies for the lack of photos for the rest of the evening as darkness set in and the rest of the evening was conducted by candlelight. COVID restrictions meant we had to remain outside. Thank goodness for good weather. Speaking of luck, Donald Martin won the Garmin Pro 550 e-collar that was donated by Garmin, one of our corporate sponsors.



 
Chief Marshal Dennis Harwood indicated that setup went smoothly and provided the judges’ instructions for sending dogs from the mat and dealing with no birds. Thank you to the setup crew, Dave Gemmil, Donna Wardle, Scott Adams, Jean Richardson and Steve Bruce. The bitch check will be Sunday from 11:00am - 1:00pm. The caravan will depart headquarters Monday morning at 7:00 am and the 1st series will be a Land Double. Honorary Test Dog will be FTCH AFTCH Kapriver Ramblintozy owned by Mark and Sirkka Laberge and handled by Mark. Female Test dog will be I’ve Seen The Light, Mom Of Kaotic, owned and handled by Ann Steer. Male Test Dog will be Gahonks Loyal Patriot, owned and handled by Mitch Bertram.
 
 
Judge Gerry Burmaster spoke on behalf of the judges. The grounds crew worked hard preparing the tests, and the grounds are great except for there are way too many hills. Thank you to Dave and Jane Thompson for going the extra mile in putting on this National on such short notice.
 
Once the judges were excused for the evening, the serious business of the calcutta got underway. Auctioneer Dave Thompson, got some outstanding bids from contestants that travelled from the east coast, the west coast and the United States. COVID has made it difficult for contestants to travel but diehard handlers travelled from British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, Prince Edward Island and Ohio USA. In past years more Americans have competed in our Nationals and hopefully they will return when COVID is behind us. Bidding was fast and furious and at the end of the night, the club benefited from the generous bids.
 
To close the night the starting dog number was drawn. Dog 31 Sirmak Pippi Pitkasukka was the lucky dog to start the 2021 Canadian National Retriever Championship.

Monday September 13, 2021

Tests 1 & 2 - Land Double With a Retired Gun and a Blind

The 2021 Canadian National would like to thank our sponsors, Nestle-Purina Official Sponsor of the Canadian National Retriever Championship, Official Dog Food Sponsor and the Official Dog Food Supplier to the National Retriever Club of Canada, Garmin Tri-Tronics official e-collar supplier. Thank you as well to Kent Cartridge official ammunition supplier, Dakota Creek Retrievers and Canine Field Co.



 
Welcome to the first day of the 2021 Canadian National Retriever Championship. Skies are clear, with a slight breeze 9-13 km NW. The wind is at the handlers’ back when on line. With the early dogs the glare of the sun makes it difficult to see the gunners on the go bird. The starting temperature is 13C. The field is heavy cover with a treed fence line behind the blind and slopes downhill from right to left.
 
Judges from left to right; Gerry Burmaster, Dave Wardle and Medie Robinson.



 
The land double has the left hand long memory bird at 167 yards and the right hand go bird at 71 yards. Both marks are thrown right to left. There are 2 prominent power poles flanking the holding blind for the retired gunners on the long memory bird. The go bird is thrown downhill into a flock of goose silhouette decoys. A hen pheasant is used on the go bird and a hen mallard on the land blind. A drake mallard is thrown for the left retired. The blind is located between the marks and is run from a separate mat about 5 paces to the left of the mat used for the marks. When the dog completes the last mark, the handler moves and receives the bird on the mat used for the blind. The blind is about 260 yards long and crosses the line to the left retired gun.



 



  
Honorary Test Dog



 
 
Honorary Test Dog, FTCH AFTCH Kapriver Ramblinrozy, owned by Mark and Sirkka Laberge and handled by Mark, was more interested in the real test out in the field and considered her mark too short to be the real thing. After some convincing, Rozy settled in for her mark. Even at 12 years old, she broke and really enjoyed getting to go one more time to line and retrieve a bird.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
As is tradition at our Nationals, a judge from the previous National passes the signalling paddle to a judge for the current National. In this case, the judge from the 2019 National, Sharon Van Der Lee passes the paddle to Western Zone Judge Medie Robinson.



 
First up was Male Test Dog Gahonks Loyal Patriot, owned and handled by Mitch Bertram. Brady went under the arc and hunted behind the goose decoys before coming into retrieve the bird from among the decoys. He had an excellent mark on the left retired gun and lined the blind. Great job. Next Female Test Dog, I’ve Seen The Light, Mom of Kaotic, owned and handled by Ann Steer. Putzi had similar work on the go bird, going under the arc and hunting behind the decoys before coming in to retrieve the bird. She too had a good memory bird but ran into some difficulty on the blind. She started out left of line then overcast to the right and went out of sight behind some heavy cover. When she came back into sight, Ann regained control and handled to the blind.
 
First dog #31 Sirmak Pippi Pitksukka was called to line at 8:25 am. Good luck to all. Test dogs made the left retired mark look easy. Later many dogs went right of the gun station hunted deep and winded the area of the blind and had to be handled or picked up.
Workers in Green



Changing of the Guard


 
Rogue Gallery



 
43 dogs were called back to the 3rd Test which is scheduled to be a water blind. The judges are hoping to get in Test 3 today.
Callbacks: 1,2,3,4,6,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,16,18,18,21,24,25,26,27,28,29,31,32,34,35,36,37,38,39,40,41,42,43,44,45,46,47,50,51,52,53
Dogs not Called back: 5,15,17,22,23,30,33,48,49

Test 3 - Water Blind

Chief Marshal Dennis Harwood and the Judges Waiting for the 1st dog to come to line



 

For the water blind it was sunny with a few clouds and the temperature had risen to a comfortable 21C. The blind was run due East and the wind was 18 km SW gusting to 27 km. The line to the blind was downhill, across a dirt road, over a point on the near shore, over an island in the middle of the pond. There is heavy cover surrounding the shore. When the dog exits the water it must drive uphill to the blind which was located about half way to the treeline in the background.The blind was 185 yards and was planted about 6 ft from the marker.



 



 
First up was Male Test Dog. Brady lined over the first point, brushed the right side of the island and broke down in the heavy cover on the far side of the pond. He disappeared behind the tree on the left side of the line and was deep when he came back into sight and had to be handled into the blind. Female Test dog was up next. Putzi started out left of the line to the blind and had a few whistles before the water to get back on line. She finished nicely. Dog 41 was the first dog called to line at 3:15 pm. Most of the dogs did very well on the water blind and the judges were able to get everyone run.
 
Callbacks: All dogs were called back. Dog 52 will start the 4th series, which is scheduled to be water marks.

Tuesday September 14, 2021

Test 4 - Water Triple With Honor

 

Brought to you by Canine Field Co. sponsor of the National Retriever Championship



 
For Test 4 we returned to the same pond as the water blind. In fact the line taken to the left mark is over the point from the water blind. The test was run from the opposite end of the pond. To start the day, the skies were overcast with the threat of rain. Temperature was 13C with the wind 11 km NE. Ducks were thrown for all the marks. The order of the guns was, centre, left, right. Both the centre and left guns retired and only the go bird gunners remained visible. All birds were thrown into the test. The long retired centre bird was thrown uphill into cover along the treeline. The left retired was thrown on land along the shoreline into cover, and the last right hand go bird was thrown along the shore but landed on the dike behind a patch of cover. Distances to the birds were; left 117 yards, right 167 yards and long centre bird is 252 yards.



 



 
First up was Female Test Dog. For the go bird, Putzi went under the arc, up onto the dike and then back down into the water for her bird. On her way to the go bird Putzi stumbled in some high weeds along the road, so for safety reasons, the weeds were cut after the test dogs ran. She stepped on the left retired and had an excellent long centre retired. Male Test Dog was up next. Brady went to the gunners on the go bird and hunted the dike before coming down into the water to pick up the bird. He decided the fastest way back was on land. For the left retired, Brady went wide right and had a bit of a hunt in the area. His centre retired was very good as well. After the test dogs ran, the go bird was thrown along the dike on land and the long centre throw was changed from landing out in the field to landing in cover along the treeline.
 
Brady



Putzi


 
The test dogs made it look easy but the running dogs had more difficulty. In the early dogs, there was a pickup and a couple of handles. The handles were on the long centre retired. Some dogs had trouble coming up with the left retired mark because they had to dig out the bird from heavy cover.
 
Callbacks: 1,2,4,6,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,16,18,19,21,24,25,26,27,29,31,32,34,35,37,38,39,40,42,43,44,45,46,47,50,51,53
Dogs Not Called Back: 3,28,36,41,52

Wednesday September 15, 2021

Test 5 - Land Triple With 2 Retired Guns

Brought to you by Purina, Official Sponsor of the Canadian National Retriever Championship, Official Dog Food Sponsor and the Official Dog Food Supplier to the National Retriever Club of Canada


Purina logo

 
After a heavy rain overnight, the contestants woke up to overcast skies and a cool temperature of 16C. Breakfast was sponsored by Gloria and Dan Devos, Baypoint Kennels. Thank you Gloria and Dan. The test faced South West and the barely perceptable breeze was 5 km W. For the 5th series we moved to an uncut clover field surrounded by deciduous trees and brush and an uncut crop behind the right hand gun station. Hen mallards were thrown for all marks. The left go bird and centre retired were both thrown left to right and the right hand retired was thrown into the test from right to left. All birds were thrown into relatively high cover. Right from the start it appeared that the field would track up significantly and drag back may come into play for the later dogs. For the starting dogs, lack of wind and shadows were issues. Distances to the birds were right retired 265 yards, centre retired 285 and left go bird, 138 yards. The order of the birds thrown was centre, right, left. The retired guns were instructed to retire immediately after they throw. The centre retired was thrown into the edge of brush along the treeline from left to right. Next, the right hand retired mark was thrown left into the edge of an uncut crop, Finally the go bird is thrown flat across some ATV tracks into knee high cover. The field sloped downhill to the go bird with a side hill angle approach to the right hand mark.



 



 
First up, male test dog, Brady had a good go bird. He was sent for the centre retired 2nd and ran to the gun station before breaking left and hunting the brush and treeline on the wrong side to where the gunners stood. There is a large clump of cover about 90% of the way out that seemed to push the dogs onto a path that took them left. Brady was sent to the right hand mark last. He appeared to fall off the hill and ended up wide left of the bird where he initiated his hunt. He worked his way across to the holding blind but stayed in front of the cover and it took a while to work back into the cover. Next, Putzi went right to the go bird for an excellent mark. For the centre retired she too broke left and hunted in front of the brush along the treeline to the left before working her way over to the bird. For the right retired, Putzi had a good line right to the bird.
Handlers Scoping Out the Test





 
As the test progressed, significant paths developed to the centre and right hand marks, and the centre mark was easier to see in the air once the sun came around and it was no longer in shadows.
 
Rogues Gallery





 
Callbacks: 1,2,4,6,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,16,18,19,21,24,25,26,27,32,35,37,38,39,40,42,43,44,45,46,47,50,51,53
Dogs Not Called Back: 29,31,34

Test 6 - Land Blind

The Land blind is in the same field as the 5th series land marks. The running line was moved 60 yards to the left of the running line for test 5 and line to the blind crossed the lines to the left and centre marks. There were 2 gunners sitting at the gun station for the centre mark from test 5. The distance to the blind was 339 yards. The field sloped right to left towards the gun station and there was a cross wind from right to left, although it changed constantly.



 



 
First up was male test dog, Brady. The suction to the left and all of the factors pushing to the left proved too much for Brady and he had to be helped to the bird. Next, female test dog Putzi started right of the line and had to be handled left which she took and fell off the hill towards the white coats. Then she got on line and carried that a long way and then broke left again and had a right hand cast to the bird. The judges asked for another male test dog, so Laura Danforth ran Bowrivers Trail Blazer. This dog did not run the marks. He started out on a good initial line and then fell off the hill, left. Laura cast right, which he carried for a way before being sucked left to the trees. One more cast put him on the bird.
 
32 dogs were called back to the 7th series and dog 32 will start the water marks at headquarters.
Callbacks: 1,4,6,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,16,19,21,24,25,26,27,32,35,37,39,40,42,43,44,45,46,47,50,51,53
Dogs Not Called Back: 2,18,38

Thursday September 16, 2021

Test 7 - Water Quad With 1 Retired Gun

Brought to you by Purina, Official Sponsor of the Canadian National Retriever Championships, Official Dog Food Sponsor and the Official Dog Food Supplier to the National Retriever Club of Canada


Purina logo

 
It was a bright sunny day with a cool temperature of 11C. Luckily Purina sponsored a hot breakfast for all of the contestants and workers. Thank you to our major sponsor Purina. For the 7th series water quad we returned to Gahonk Kennels, Headquarters. The test was run in 2 ponds separated by a mowed dike. There was a touch of colour in the trees along the far side of the ponds. A reminder that Fall is coming soon. From the line to the water’s edge the field was knee high uncut clover and hay mix. There were bushes and cattails all along both sides of both ponds. A drake mallard was thrown on the long left retired and all the other birds thrown were hen mallards. The order of the guns was clockwise from long left retired, centre left, centre right and the go bird on land on the near shore to the right. All of the first 3 gun stations were across the ponds to the far shore. Distances to the marks were; 307 yards to the long left retired, 255 yards to the centre left, 158 yards to the centre right and 122 yards to the go bird. In other words, the distance to the marks gets progressively shorter with each gun. For test dogs, the water was like glass, although we could feel a breeze coming straight down the ponds. For the most part, all the birds thrown for the week have been thrown into heavy cover, so the dogs have to dig them out and don’t get the benefit of seeing the bird when they get to the area. This test is no different. The long left and centre left are thrown right to left down the shore. The centre right is thrown contrary, left to right and the go bird is thrown into the test from right to left.



 



 
To start the test, all of the gunners on the far shore were in the bright sun and the right hand go bird was in the shadows. It was interesting to see how the lighting changes affected the test later in the day. Male Test Dog Brady was up first. He had difficulty digging out the go bird that was thrown angle back into high weeds and brush at the edge of an island of trees. There was no wind or much scent to help him with his hunt so Brady ended up being handled. For the centre right mark, Brady’s bird landed in a tree and had to be knocked down while he was retrieving the go bird. Brady swam to the gun station and put up an extensive hunt along the dike and into the trees before being handled and helped to the bird. For the centre left mark Brady swam to the gun station and hooked over to pick up the bird that landed behind a prominent log on the far shore. For the left long retired, Brady started out on a good line into the 2nd pond but faded right once he was into the water. He exited early on land between the long left and centre left gun stations and drove up hill. He put on a substantial hunt on the hill side on the wrong side of the holding blind before working his was down hill and deep of the gun station and then appeared to wind the bird because he came right into it on shore.
 
Next up is Ann Steer and Putzi. For the go bird on the right, Putzi fell off the hill and initiated her hunt along the island of trees to the left of the bird and worked her way to the point of cover and the bird. For the centre right mark, Putzi went under the arc and hunted along the dike and into the trees before working her way over to the bird. For the centre left mark, Putzi swam under the arc and looped over to get the bird behind the log. For the long left retired, Putzi started out on a good initial line into the second pond but faded right and landed between the long left and centre left gun stations, similar to Brady. She then drove up hill into a clearing behind the gun station and hunted out of sight. Eventually she came down to the shore and retrieved her bird from the cattails.
 
It was a long test with each dog taking between 20-25 minutes. Doing about 3 dogs an hour, 32 dogs. Of the first 6 dogs, there was a pick up, 2 handles and 3 did it.
 
At 3:42 pm the judges called the test for the day. There were 12 more dogs to run the next morning. As noted earlier, the lighting conditions changed significantly . The glare on the water made seeing the long left gunners next to impossible and they were back lit so the dogs could not pick them out. The other gunners on the far shore were in shadows and the birds were barely visible in the black shadows. A good call by the judges.

Workers’ Party



 
 
 
 
 
 
The Workers’ Party was a chance for everyone to unwind and show appreciation to all of the volunteers that made these events possible. The Master of Ceremonies for the evening was once again, Bill Kennedy. Homemade lasagna dinner was a hit with everyone. With COVID restrictions still in place, dinner was outside and thankfully the weather cooperated. Unfortunately that meant most of the festivities took place by candlelight and photos were not possible. However, we had reason to celebrate our oldest gunner Albert Gatrell who turned 90 rhe next day. Never too old. For the occasion we had a surprise birthday cake. Happy Birthday Albert!
 
One of the fund raisers that help defer costs of hosting a National is the Silent Auction. Thank you to all of our sponsors and individuals who donated items for the Silent Auction. So many choices for Christmas presents or just gifts to spoil ourselves.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Albert & Kathleen Gatrell


 

Friday September 17, 2021

Test 7 - Water Quad With 1 Retired Gun (Continued)

Brought to you by Garmin, official E-collar sponsor of the National Retriever Club of Canada


Tri-tronics logo

 
We had 12 dogs yet to run the 7th series, starting with dog 10. It was a gorgeous sunny morning with a comfortable temperature around 12C. There was a slight breeze 7 km NE but the water in the valley was like glass. Breakfast for the contestants and workers was again sponsored by Purina. Without sponsors, it would be next to impossible to put on these National events.
 



 
 
 
 
 
 
Female Test Dog was Davadar’s Mother of the Blues, owned by Dave and Darlene Broomhead and handled by Darlene. Rainy had no trouble with the go bird, the centre right mark or the centre left mark. However, when sent for the long left retired she broke down at the edge of the water and initiated a hunt on the near shore and had to be handled to the bird. Dog 10 was called to line at 7:55 am
Callbacks: 4,6,10,12,13,16,19,21,24,27,32,35,37,40,42,43,44,45,47,51,53
Dogs Not Called Back: 1,7,8,9,11,14,25,26,39,46,50
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Test 8 - Water Blind

For the 8th series we moved to a different pond on the same property at headquarters. The skies remained clear and the temperature rose to 24C. Hot in the sun but luckily the gallery was back in the trees with lots of shade. Distance to the blind was 315 yards as the crow flies. For the dogs however, they have to negotiate down hill to the water, across the water and exit up another big hill. For sure they are covered far more distance to the blind. The line to the blind was through some cut off sumac right at the start, down hill to catch a corner of the pond, across a spit that divided the pond, then into big water with a cross wind from right to left, over a point on the far shore. Upon exiting, the dogs needed to catch a corner of a large island of cover with bushes and a steep uphill slope. Then into an uncut hay field with a mix of weeds about knee high or more.



 



 
Female Test Dog was first up. Putzi missed the sumac at the start which put her left of line from the get go. She needed a number of whistles crossing the big water to keep her on line as she wanted to fade with the wind. Took a few casts to get her through the island of cover as she wanted to go right and then left. She was left of line going through the field and went deep before being whistled in to the bird. Male Test Dog was Grit, handled by Laura Danforth. Grit also wanted to fade with the wind and required a number of casts to keep him on line. Laura tried to get the island of cover but Grit managed to slip by on the right. She finished the blind without any more difficulty.
 
Handlers Strategizing



 
Callbacks: 4,6,10,12,13,16,19,21,24,27,32,35,37,40,42,43,44,47,51,53
Dogs Not Called Back: 45
20 dogs were called back to the 9th series which is planned to be a Land Quad. Dog 53 starts.

Saturday September 18, 2021

Test 9 - Land Quad With 3 Retired Guns and an Honor

The 2021 Canadian National would like to thank our sponsors, Nestle-Purina Official Sponsor of the Canadian National Retriever Championship, Official Dog Food Sponsor and the Official Dog Food Supplier to the National Retriever Club of Canada, Garmin Tri-Tronics official e-collar supplier. Thank you as well to Kent Cartridge, and Canine Field Co, Dakota Creek Retrievers, and Retriever Results our partner in results reporting



 

The 9th series was a land quad with the left 3 gun stations retired. Only the go bird on the right remained visible. The field sloped down hill from right to left as well as downhill from line to the centre right retired. There were 3 distinct cover changes. From the mat to the first change in cover, it was a mixture of weeds, golden rod and tall grasses. Next was a cut clover field that ended with a ridge of cover that transected the test. Next was a large cut hay field. There was a row of trees that came towards the line with the 2 long left hand gunners throwing either side. The long centre left gun station was about a hundred yards deep of the left gun station, and threw into the hay field from left to right. There was a flock of goose silhouettes enroute in the cut hay field. The left gun station stood to the left of the row of trees and threw angle back, right to left, out of the test. The line to the bird was through heavy cover and along a side hill for half of the route. The risk was that dogs would fall off the hill and square out of the cover early. The centre right retired was a short mark thrown left to right along the transition ridge of cover. The gunners stood in the clover and threw over the ridge into the cut hay field. The go bird was on the right up on a hill, and was thrown angle back from right to left into the test. The order of the birds was long centre left retired, then left retired, short centre right retired, and then the go bird. Distances to the marks were; left 293 yards, centre left 393 yards, centre right 158 yards and go bird 197 yards. A rooster pheasant was thrown for the go bird, hen mallards at the left retired and short centre right retired, and a drake was thrown for the long centre left mark.



 



 
First up was male test dog. Grit handled by Laura had a good go bird, under the arc and looped over to the bird. For the short retired on the centre right, Grit was going deep wide right, and had to be handled back to the bird. Laura chose to send Grit to the left retired but he fell off the hill early and ended up at the decoys. He hunted behind the decoys and over to the trees before Laura handled to the centre left retired. When resent to the left retired Grit fell off the hill and squared out of the cover towards the decoys, before being handled to the bird. A tough test. Next up was Ann with Putzi. For the go bird Putzi went under the arc and hunted deep on both sides of the gun station before working her way over to the bird. Next, Putzi wanted to pick up the left retired mark. She started out with a good line but broke right after the cover and hunted around the tree before working her way over to the decoys. She then started to hunt short and in before being handled. For the short centre right retired, Putzi was going deep and had to be handled to the bird. She was not sent for the long centre left retired. Another test dog was called to line. Shawn Grady with his dog Baypoint’s Ain’t Life Grand, Abby went right to the go bird. She stepped on the short right retired. But when she was sent for the left retired she fell off the hill early and ended up hunting between the trees and the decoys before Shawn handled her to the bird. For the centre left retried she just about got to the decoys and then popped. Shawn handled her to the bird with a big booming back! The decoys are proving to be a big attraction. Keep in mind that in the first test, the bird was thrown into a flock of goose decoys.
 
Almost Done Judges







 
Dogs Called Back: 4,6,13,16,19,35,42,43,44,47,51
Dogs Not Called Back: 10,12.21,24,27,32,37,40,53
 
The judges have decided there wouldn’t’ be enough time to finish Test 10 and they didn’t want to split the test. So, dog 13 will start the water quad the next day.

Sunday September 19, 2021

Test 10 - Water Quad With 3 Retired Guns

The 2021 Canadian National would like to thank our sponsors, Nestle-Purina Official Sponsor of the Canadian National Retriever Championship, Official Dog Food Sponsor and the Official Dog Food Supplier to the National Retriever Club of Canada, Garmin Tri-Tronics official e-collar supplier. Thank you as well to Kent Cartridge, and Canine Field Co, Dakota Creek Retrievers, and Retriever Results our partner in results reporting



 
Another beautiful day in the neighbourhood. Sunny, clear skies, although a bit chilly to start. For the first time the temperature was in the single digits, 8C. Hopefully it will warm up quickly. For the final series, we were back at Gahonk Kennels. Thank you to all of the landowners, Jody & Ron Greenly, and Dave & Jane Thompson. Test 10 used the pond from the Test 8 water blind but ran from the opposite side of the pond. The running line was at the top of the hill with a long water entry down hill through a mix of high hay and golden rod. Cattails and willow surround the pond, and a spit divides the pond. The heavy cover at the edge of the pond on the way to the centre left retired. appeared to have paths that had already developed after test dogs and would scent up substantially. 2 of the marks were thrown along the edge of the pond, 1 behind a mound on the far shore and 1 uphill into heavy cover across a clearing. Hen mallards were thrown for the 2 outside marks and drakes were thrown for the longer centre marks. All birds were thrown from left to right. Distances to the marks were; left 162 yards, centre left 278 yards, centre right 213 yards and the left hand go bird is 149 yards. Keep in mind, these distances to do not account for down hill and up hill. To begin with, the centre left retired gunners stood in shadows to throw. This changed as the sun got higher. All the other gun stations stood out in the bright sun. The order of the guns was centre left retired, centre right retired, left retired and then the visible go bird on the right. The centre left retired was the longest mark and was thrown angle back from in front of a tall tree, across a clearing into thigh high golden rod and weeds. The centre right retired threw from a group of 3 tall trees, angled back into ankle high grass behind a mound of golden rod and weeds. The left retired stood on one side of a road that went along the left side of the pond and threw angle back across the road to the base of a point. The last bird was thrown from the spit on the right side of the pond, across a channel to a spit coming out from the right hand shore. The first dog was called to line at 8:45.



 



 
The work the test dogs do, is an indicator of the factors that will influence the dogs and how the dogs respond. For that reason, details on how the test dogs do, are given to help you understand what is happening with the test. First up was female test dog, Sirmak Pippi Pitkasukka, owned by Mark and Sirkka Laberge and handled by Mark. For the go bird, Pippi fell off the hill on the way to the water and entered the pond left of the spit that the gunners were sitting on, went to the gun station and then crossed the channel to the right and to the bird. For the centre right retired, Pippi exited the pond in the corner and hunted right along the shore, before working her way deep and to the wrong side, eventually hunting her way over to the bird. On the centre left retired, she had a good line across the pond and through the heavy cover on the edge and then popped and had to be handled to the bird. For the left retired Pippi squared across the pond, right of the mark, and had to be handled to the bird.
 
Male test dog is FTCH AFTCH Ram River Rainbow Royale, owned by Daniel Danforth and handled by Laura Danforth. Roy had a similar job to Pippi on the go bird, to the gunners and then across the channel to the bird. Next he was sent to the left retired and ran down the road, hunting short before working his way along the edge of the pond to bird. For the centre right retired, Roy seemed to split the difference between the 2 centre guns, but curled right as he crossed the pond and exited to the left of the gunners, crossed in front and went to the bird. For the centre left retired, Roy had a good line all the way out to the bird, went under the arc a little deep and came back down to retrieve his bird. Excellent mark.
 
At 11:00 am we were half way and had a gun change. There were some handles, some pick ups, and the cream was rising to the top. At 12:25 pm the last dog completed the test.
 
Overall, the tests throughout the week were challenging and callbacks were generous. Most birds were thrown into heavy cover so dogs had to mark where the birds landed. When dogs got to the area, they had to dig out the birds, and there were no give aways. Many of the fields and ponds where the tests took place, were surrounded by deciduous forests, resulting in an echo effect when the guns went off, creating a lot of head swinging by the dogs trying to figure out where the shots were fired. Luck always figures into a National and this was no different. As luck would have it, when a dog ran in the rotation seemed to play a role in their outcome, with lighting conditions and wind changing over time. There always seemed to be an optimal time to run. Even with all these factors the best step up and meet the challenges and the winner shines above all.