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Field Trial Report

Arizona Open Shooting Dog Championship

By John Beauchamp | Feb 05, 2020
The Winner. From left: Judge Bruce Hale, Glenn Johnson, Terry Erickson, Tucalota’s Rebel Buck with Ed Mayhew, Judge Brian Smith and Russ Boyd.

California City, Cal. — We want to start the report with thanking our sponsors and supporters. Without their support we wouldn’t be able to continue the tradition of field trials. In a time when retirements outnumber recruitments, every bit of help we get is invaluable.

Purina supported not only the Arizona Open Shooting Dog Championship but also the prior stakes run by Region 11. They covered the ad cost and provided product for the winners. Much appreciated, thank you again.

SportDog supplied a collar for the winner that was very much appreciated.  Both these sponsors’ representatives are professionals and easy to work with.

Our judges were Brian Smith of Queen Creek, Ariz., and Bruce Hale of Riverside Cal. Thank you for being willing to watch the dogs.

With moving the trial from Kingman to California City, the logistics of lunch became a challenge. But Ed, Lynda and Shannon Dixon came to the rescue, big time. They had breakfast burros warm and ready in the morning and hot lunch as well. Field trialing is best in cooler temperatures, and it never really warmed up for us. So that hot lunch was really welcome. Thank you, thank you.

Following a couple of years of low to okay number of entries in this Championship, we tried something different this year. We changed the grounds. Dating back to the 1970s, the Arizona Open Shooting Dog Championship has been run in the Kingman, Ariz., area. The grounds have changed or moved over the years, but Kingman has always been the base. Kingman is on I40 and links California and Arizona. So, through the years support has come from California and Arizona field trialers. And some noted travelers from Utah, Kansas, New Mexico, and beyond.

With Arizona support having steadily declined over the last decade, we felt we needed to try something different. So, we moved the Arizona Open to California City. It followed the California Bird Dog Championship and the Wally Wallace Derby Classic. These grounds are heavily used for many field trial types. We thought we would be able to pull a number of the breed dog trialers, but it didn’t work. Trial dates changed creating conflicts. We had eight dogs entered. So, we’ll figure something out going forward. And we are open to input on date and location.

Beautiful weather and California City are not normally mentioned in the same report. But we had nice weather through all three stakes. Recent rains had the soil moist but not wet. Scenting conditions were very good and all braces had birds.  In fact, I think just about every dog had finds. These grounds are known for strong winds, but we really didn’t have wind. Breeze, yes.

This year’s course was different than we have used in the past. Camp was moved to the Camp H area and course was basically a left hand semi-circle, intersecting the old course near the cave area. The new course layout is very even side to side, and plenty long enough.

Breakaway for the Arizona Shooting Dog Championship was at 8:15 a. m. under clear skies and a slight breeze. Temperatures were around 37-40°.

The Running

Tucalota’s Rebel Touch (Sassy/Ed Mayhew) started up the hills to the left of cast off and then dropped down into the bottom of the draw going out to the front. Sassy lost touch with us to the front and the retrieval unit was pulled at 20. She went way forward and missed the turn. B M B’s Samsquanch (Sam/ Brandon Blum) worked the hills to the left of breakaway with bracemate, but had troubles and was up early.

Horizon’s Rue (Terry Erickson) looked really good from the start. Her first find was at 17 under the rock outcroppings on the left of the course. All was in order. Just three minutes later she backed bracemate in front of the cave. Her second find was at 35 on the ridge that marked the corner, again all in order. Then her final find was only five minutes later. Unfortunately a bad flush led to steps and she was up. Almosta’s Mighty Mouse (Moe/John Beauchamp) started strong and was working every rock pile for game. At 20 point and back were called at distance. As we arrived judges determined Moe was on the game and Rue was backing. All was in order for Rue. Moe not so much. A bad flush sent the bird by her head and several steps were taken.

Tucalota’s Rebel Rush (Bandit/Ed Mayhew) was forward working the hills on the way out, just under the rocks. Point was called at 18 and game was produced. Bandit was up. Almosta’s Wile E Coyote (Will/Beauchamp) worked the rocks on top of each of the hills going out. Almosta’s Wile E Coyote was up following an absence.

Horizon’s Americus (Shae/Erickson) was forward, handled well, covered the ground, but needed a find. Tucalota’s Rebel Buck (Mayhew) covered the ground and worked objectives well.  And as luck would have it, scored a clean find in the LAST minute of competition to claim the championship title!  You see all kinds of things at field trials, but this one you don’t see every day. Congratulations to Ed and Tucalota’s Rebel Buck. Well done!

California City, Cal., January 6 — One Course

Judges: Bruce Hale and Brian Smith

ARIZONA OPEN SHOOTING DOG CHAMPIONSHIP [One-Hour Heats] —

6 Pointers and 2 Setters

Winner—TUCALOTA’S REBEL BUCK, 1662660, pointer male, by White Powder Grip—Rivertons Funseeker Riley. Ed Mayhew, owner and handler.

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