American Field

Field Trial Report

Coalfield Trials

By Mary Sue Schalk | Jan 04, 2019
Amateur All-Age Winners. From right: Roger Watson with R W Penelope, Bill Chesnut, judge; David Hendricks with Pleasant Run Gal, Sonia Chesnut, judge; Terry Allen, Dennis Sneed with Erin’s Play the Red and Mary Sue Schalk.

Kevil, Ky. — The Ohio Valley Field Trial Circuit held their third trial of the season hosted by the Coalfield Bird Dog Club on Saturday, December 8. Two stakes were drawn, an Amateur All-Age with six entries, and seven entries for the Derby.

Throughout the week a threat of ice and snow loomed in the forecast; however, the day of the trial dawned crisp and clear.

We are thankful for our participants, entries, club members and judges, who drove from South Georgia to officiate our event.

Bill and Sonia Chesnut are bird dog enthusiasts who are new to the sport of horseback field trials. Bill is an active hunting guide, and enjoys a good bird dog — primarily a German Shorthair. Sonia raises English Cockers and Dachshunds, having first been introduced to the versatile flush dog through well-known Cocker breeder, Emily Williams. The husband-wife team recently expanded their canine string to include pointers. They were attentive judges and enjoyed participating in our event.


The Amateur All-Age Stake kicked off our Saturday morning. Dennis Sneed’s pointer male Erin’s Play the Red, paired with setter male Crouse’s Oak Heights (Mike Crouse) in the first brace. At the breakaway both athletes took to opposite edges of the opening field promising an entertaining hour. Unfortunately, after the passage through the woods and hard right back to the bottoms Oak Heights was not seen again. Play the Red hunted earnestly throughout his hour. His efforts earned him the third place spot.

Pointer male Crouse’s Equalizer (Mike Crouse) was braced with pointer female R W Penelope (Roger Watson). Equalizer ran a strong, forward race, seeming to appear in front at just the right time. He had a stylish stand deep in the corner at 35 with Penelope backing. Crouse flushed and then located a quail roost for the judges. Equalizer continued on to finish his hour going to the front. Penelope covered the ground gracefully and handled well for Watson. She pinned a covey right on the treeline before pickup. With her ground performance, she earned the top spot.

Rounding out the morning and stake, David Hendricks’ pointer female Pleasant Run Gal and Crouse’s Samuri Warlord (Mike Crouse). The last hour of the morning kept the gallery on their toes with Warlord making big forward swings and Gal staying snappily ahead. Gal had a solid find next to the red rock road in the second half of the hour. Both dogs finished strong down the power line. Gal’s performance pleased the judges and she earned second.

After a brief break for lunch, the Amateur Derby  kicked off. Hilltopper Topdog, owned and handled by John Russell, and Crouse’s Rebel Ripken, owned and handled by Mike Crouse, let us know that the Derby  was not going to be a trip to the dog park! Topdog styled up less than five minutes into the brace and Russell raised two birds. Ripken took to the edges, challenging his bracemate with every step to keep the pace. The young pointer males thrilled their handlers and the audience with their half hour performance. Hilltopper Topdog earned  first.

For the second hour, pointer males Crouse’s Iron Man and Crouse’s White Dragon were paired, Alan Benson and Mary Sue Schalk the owner-handlers, respectively. Iron Man handled well for Benson; however, the retrieval device was asked for just before time when Iron Man disappeared with a flock of turkeys. White Dragon ran well, showing his true potential in his finish. He rimmed the final field just as time ran out headed to the front. His race proved to be good enough for third.

The third brace paired pointer female littermates Crouse’s Skiptomylu and Crouse’s Total Eclipse. Both  are easy on the eyes, with Lu being white and liver, while “Babe” is white and black. Their course provided multiple opportunities for the bold females to reach out. Alan Benson handled Skiptomylu, and the bond between the two was evident as she responded well to his direction. Total Eclipse proved to be the better of the two on this day, earning second.

R W Susie Q (Roger Watson), as a bye, shows potential with her flashy style and forward movement. She finished her half hour for Watson.

The Coalfield  Club thanks our judges, Bill and Sonia Chesnut,  dog wagon driver Terry Allen, our sponsor for awards for this trial, Deer30 Mineral, and all participants.

We appreciate the horseback field trial enthusiasts who braved the cold weather this time of year to “play the game”.

We also appreciate Tim Kreher and his team at the West Kentucky Wildlife Management Area in Kevil, Ky. We are blessed to have a facility where we are able to utilize six different courses and for that we are very thankful. Good luck to all as the 2018-19 season continues!

Kevil, Ky., December 8

Judges: Bill Chesnut and Sonia Chesnut

AMATEUR ALL-AGE [One-Hour Heats] — 5 Pointers and 1 Setter

1st—R W PENELOPE, 1672198, pointer female, by Whippoorwill Mayhem—House’s Snow White. Roger Watson, owner and handler.

2d—PLEASANT RUN GAL, 1668686, pointer female, by Mercer Mill Moon—Pleasant Run Jillian. David Hendricks, owner and handler.

3d—ERIN’S PLAY THE RED, 1676304, pointer male, by Erin’s Redrum—Wiggins Lady War Trace. Dennis Sneed, owner and handler.

AMATEUR DERBY — 7 Pointers

1st—HILLTOPPER TOPDOG, 1675806, male, by Dominator’s Rebel Heir—Hilltopper Debutante. John Russell, owner and handler.

2d—CROUSE’S TOTAL ECLIPSE, 1673980, female, by Crouse’s Ebony Masterpiece—Crouse’s Gerri Wind. M. D. Crouse, owner and handler.

3d—CROUSE’S WHITE DRAGON, 1673939, male, by Crouse’s Zippidy Do—Crouse’s Funseeker Dragon. Mary Sue Schalk, owner and handler.

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