American Field

Field Trial Report

ABHA National Championship

By Michael Branscum | Jun 19, 2020
Championship Winners. From left: Mike Branscum, Scott Luther with North Creek Scooter, Bill Hoover and Bill Brown, the judges; Ronnie Rogers with Katyln’s Jan and Dean Powell.

Berea, Ky. — The ABHA National Championship took place at Miller Welch Central Kentucky WMA near Berea, Ky., on March 10. The Derby Classic and horseback stakes took place the following day.

Weather during the Championship was intermittent rain showers with temperatures in the upper 50s. Fortunately we did not experience any weather delays.

First and foremost I would like to thank our judges for the Championship and Derby Classic — Bill Brown of Waco, Ky., and Bill Hoover of Felicity, Ohio. We were extremely fortunate to have these two esteemed judges presiding over our trial.

Declared National Champion was a setter female named Katyln’s Jan, owned and handled by Ronnie Rogers of New Market, Tenn. Jan has been no stranger  to the winners’ circle over the course of her career. She has earned placements in both horseback and walking trials even taking runner-up in the AFTCA Region 4  Shooting Dog Championship a few years back.

Jan is a special dog that really has the ability to steal the show. Her style in motion and excitement are unmatched. These are traits that she has passed on to her offspring with one even earning first in the Horseback Derby companion stake.

Runner-up was setter male North Creek Scooter, owned and handled by Scott Luther of Marshall, N. C. This was the first championship appearance by both Scott and Scooter, which has had a limited field trial career but has done exceptionally well in his limited showings. Scooter took the blue ribbon two weeks prior to this trial at the Licking River BDC Open Shooting Dog Stake besting a field of 18 competitors. Scott is also a newcomer to the ABHA but we hope he’ll join us again sometime down the road.

The Running

Vitali’s Grouseringer Tony (Vitali) and Mac (Vest) started well with Tony  standing far to the right in the first big bottom near the ten-minute mark. After a relocation attempt handler elected to move on with no bird produced. Both dogs were found standing near 20 with Tony backing. Both dogs suffered a breach of manners during the flushing attempt and were ordered up.

Branscum’s Rapid Advance (Branscum) and Wild Apple Calvados (Doherty) were strong off the line with Doherty’s being the more rangy of the two. Both dogs were seen standing well to the front near 20 with Doherty’s backing. After an extended flushing attempt, a bird was produced. Movement by the backing dog ended her bid. Branscum’s dog continued on with a mid-range race scoring two additional finds at 25 and 50, showing excellent manners around game.

Jaguar Za Czeshka (Lear) and North Creek Scooter (Luther) ran strong forward races with both stopping at 10 in a small timber stand. After a short flushing attempt by both handlers they elected to move on citing that the dogs may have inadvertently backed each other. At the first creek crossing with Lear’s dog having a short leave of absence she elected to send a scout up the left hand hedgerow with point being called shortly after. All was in order through the shot and the dog was sent on to the front. Shortly after, Scooter was  standing far to the front; a bird was quickly produced with all in order. Luther’s dog scored a second find in quick succession with a third and final find near 40, finishing well to the front. Lear’s initial find created significant distance between the handlers. Nevertheless Jaguar’s bid continued boasting three more hard earned finds. Unfortunately a breach of manners on the final find at 50 ended his bid.

Both Wild Apple Spot On (Doherty) and Katyln’s Jan (Rogers) blistered the course, showing well to the front. Doherty’s dog suffered a breach of manners and was out of contention early. Rogers’ dog had a strong showing, hitting all the right places. Her first find came near the halfway mark, scoring two more in quick succession. A fourth and final find came at 55. Over the course of her bid Jan handled with ease for Ronnie finishing with plenty of gas in the tank.

Wild Apple Jonathan (Doherty) started strong running well to the front. Long Gone Wallace (Shepherd) took some time to get in the groove of things. Wallace was standing on a far hedgerow at 10 and a bird was produced with all in order through the shot. Wallace was released to the front showing new found vigor that persisted for the remainer of his bid. Wallace was found standing near the halfway mark in a timber stand but no bird was produced. Jonathan scored an excellent find at 20 but movement ended his bid.

Branscum elected to pick his Coal Camp’s Booker  early in the brace. Shortly after, Thor For President (Rogers) failed to stop to flush and was ordered up.

Daphne’s Gage (Rogers) ran a blistering race, showing infrequently to the front. He was spotted standing on a far hedgerow in the first large bottom. A bird was quickly produced with all in order. After a short leave of absence a scout located the dog standing near a hedgerow to the left of the first creek crossing. After a relocation and extended flushing attempt a bird was finally produced with all in order through the shot. After consulting with the judges handler elected to pick up at this point.

Berea, Ky., March 10 — One Course

Judges: Bill Brown and Bill Hoover

ABHA NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP [One-Hour Heats] — 5 Pointers and 8 Setters

Winner—KATYLN’S JAN, 1647516, setter female, by Jetsetter—Jacque’s Little Eva. William R. Rogers, owner and handler.

Runner-Up—NORTH CREEK SCOOTER, 1656176, setter male, by Full Blast—Moss Meadow Majestic. Scott A. Luther, owner and handler.


Winner  was Seven of Diamonds, setter male owned by Joseph and Brittany Hopkins of London, Ky., and handled by Joseph. “Pete” has had a dominant Derby season here in Kentucky and has the makings for an excellent shooting dog.

During his bid Pete scored four finds showing excellent manners around his game running a strong forward race handling well. In addition to winning the Derby Classic Pete took home second in the horseback Derby companion stake, a testament to his endurance as both stakes were run on the same day in warm conditions. This trial should serve as an excellent end cap to Pete’s Derby season and is hopefully a strong indicator of what’s to come from him in the future.

Earning runner-up was Kelly’s Rainbow Dot, setter female owned and handled by Kelly Shepherd of Waverly, Ohio. Dot is a product of Kelly’s breeding program that largely caters to grouse hunters and trialers in the North. Over the last few years Kelly’s dogs have shown to be just as formidable in the planted bird trials of the South as they are in grouse trials of the North. Dot is the latest testament to that. During her bid Dot scored three finds with a far reaching exciting ground effort.

Thanks to everyone who helped out during this trial and made it possible. I would also like to thank SportDog and Sportsman’s Pride for their support of the ABHA.

ABHA OPEN DERBY CLASSIC — 2 Pointers and 6 Setters

Winner—SEVEN OF DIAMONDS, 1682461, setter male, by Erin’s Hidden Shamrock—Diamond’s Blue Girl. Joseph & Brittany Hopkins, owners; Joseph Hopkins, handler.

Runner-Up—KELLY’S RAINBOW DOT, 1683077, setter female, by Long Gone Wallace—Skyrocket Sue. Kelly Shepherd, owner and handler.

Judges: Kelly Shepherd and Adam Thomas

ABHA OPEN DERBY — 2 Pointer and 6 Setters

1st—SHEPHERD’S KING OF HEART, 1681676, setter male, by Erin’s Hidden Shamrock—Katyln’s Jan. William R. Rogers, owner and handler.

2d—SEVEN OF DIAMONDS, 1682461, setter male, by Erin’s Hidden Shamrock—Diamond’s Blue Girl. Joseph & Brittany Hopkins, owners; Joseph Hopkins, handler.

3d—NO LEAF CLOVER, 1682457, setter male, by Erin’s Hidden Shamrock—Diamond’s Blue Girl. Joseph & Brittany Hopkins, owners; Joseph Hopkins, handler.

Judges: Mike Branscum and Bill Siemer

ABHA OPEN SHOOTING DOG — 3 Pointers and 5 Setters

1st—DAPHNE’S GAGE, 1641559, setter male, by Long Gone Nixon—Rogers Terrific Trixie. William R. Rogers, owner and handler.

2d—BUCKEYE WHITE KNIGHT, 1652264, setter male, by Quail Trap Tom—Nutter’s Sweet Briar. Bill Brown & Edward Teiga, owners; Bill Brown, handler.

3d—OUTLAW ROCKY RIVER, 1651274, pointer male, by Erin’s Stoney River—Erin’s Sweet Alabama. Bill Hoover, owner and handler.









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