American Field

Field Trial Report

Coalfield Bird Dog Club

By Mary Sue Schalk | Nov 20, 2019
Amateur All-Age Winners. From right: Sonia Chesnut, judge; Mary Sue Schalk with Crouse’s White Dragon, B. J. Wright with Crouse’s Equalizer, Mike Crouse with Crouse’s Samuri Warlord and Bill Chesnut, judge.

Kevil, Ky. — The Ohio Valley Field Trial Circuit kicked off  its season October 12 in Kevil, Ky., at the West Kentucky WMA. Two stakes were drawn, an Amateur All-Age and an Amateur Derby, both with eight entries.

Although the fall threatened above average temperatures, Saturday dawned crisp and cool with frost on the ground! We are thankful for our participants, entries, club members and judges — who drove from South Georgia to officiate our event.

Bill and Sonia Chesnut returned to Kentucky to judge for a second time, after their rookie event in December, 2018. The husband-wife team recently expanded their canine string to include pointers, and are active bird dog enthusiasts. Sonia takes the reins raising and training English Cocker Spaniels, while Bill guides hunts when he is not working. They were attentive judges and active participants in our field trial.


Crouse’s Equalizer and Crouse’s Iron Man, white and black pointer males, took to the field the first hour. Equalizer, owned and handled Mike Crouse, with Alan Benson and Iron Man. Both dogs powered through the thick cover and ran forward the first few minutes of the brace. Equalizer handled well, showing to the front, turning at opportune times during his hour. His race and manners earned him the second place spot. Iron Man’s race proved to be a little big as he was not often seen; however, he was in hand at time.

Hilltopper’s Debutante (John Russell) and Crouse’s Skiptomylu (Benson), white and liver pointer females, took off at the breakaway with gusto. They both handled well, showing a strong relationship with their handlers. Most exciting this hour was “Lu’s” covey find!

Although not as crisp and clean as we would have liked, we were thrilled to see birds on the course! Benson harnessed Skiptomylu after her bird bump.

Debutante finished her hour in front.

The third hour pitted two first year dogs white and liver pointer males against one another in Crouse’s White Dragon, owned and handled by Mary Sue Schalk, and Hilltopper’s Top Dog, owned and handled by John Russell. They took off strong to the front. As the hour progressed both dogs settled in to a forward rhythm. At 45 White Dragon added some excitement when he locked in and Schalk raised her cap. “Ty” stood in the path, facing the gallery so Schalk’s approach was hesitant. As she was able to flush to the front of her dog she called for the judge. White Dragon had pointed a hawk kill. After crossing the road, the dogs were able to open up in the field under the power lines to finish the hour. Hilltopper’s Top Dog moved down one edge while Crouse’s White Dragon surged down the edge and finished going away. White Dragon’s performance earned the first place spot!

After lunch David Hendricks handled his pointer female Pleasant Run Gal, with Mike Crouse and his pointer male Crouse’s Samuri Warlord. Gal handled well and moved through the country with ease. She is a snappy, solid white female and easy on the eyes. Warlord is a strapping, liver headed dog which ran big and worked the front. Both dogs finished strong in the bottoms across the creek, but it was Samuri Warlord which was found standing. By the time the judges were able to make it to the dog it was believed the birds were gone; needless to say the flush was unproductive. Although no birds were raised Crouse’s Samuri Warlord did earn third place.

The Derby had seven pointers and one one setter. The youngsters are always fun to watch as they learn and decide what to do in front of people and horses.

Crouse’s Heart of Dixon took the first place spot. The white and black pointer male had a strong race and was very responsive to owner-handler Mike Crouse. Mike Small and Small’s Cut Bank, pointer male, earned second place. Mike Crouse and Crouse’s Double Oak, setter male, rounded out the field in third.

The Coalfield Bird Dog Club thanks Purina for sponsoring the Ohio Valley Circuit, our judges, Bill and Sonia Chesnut, and our dog wagon driver, B. J. Wright. We all enjoyed our day “playing the game” and look forward to the next trial.

We also appreciate Tim Khrer and his team at the West Kentucky Wildlife Management Area in Kevil, Ky. We are blessed to have a facility where we are able utilize six different course and for that we are very thankful.

Good luck to all as the 2019-20 season continues!

Kevil, Ky., October 12 — One Course

Judges: Bill Chestnut and Sonia Chestnut

AMATEUR ALL-AGE [One-Hour Heats] — 8 Pointers

1st—CROUSE’S WHITE DRAGON, 1673939, male, by Crouse’s Zippidy Do—Crouse’s Funseeker Dragon. M. D. Crouse, owner; Mary Sue Schalk, handler.

2d—CROUSE’S EQUALIZER, 1660748, male, by Crouse’s Ebony Masterpiece—Crouse’s Gerri Wind. M. D. Crouse, owner and handler.

3d—CROUSE’S SAMURI WARLORD, 1651395, male, by Crouse’s White Samuri—Crouse’s Calico Shadow. M. D. Crouse, owner and handler.

AMATEUR DERBY — 7 Pointers and 1 Setter

1st—CROUSE’S HEART OF DIXON, 1685395, pointer male, by Crouse’s Kentucky Wind—Crouse’s Dark Angel. M. D. Crouse, owner and handler.

2d—SMALL’S CUT BANK, 1683762, pointer male, by Miller’s Dialing In—Small’s White Road. Mike Small, owner and handler.

3d—CROUSE’S DOUBLE OAK, 1684155, setter male, by Crouse’s Oak Heights—Crouse’s Shadow Bandit. M. D. Crouse, owner and handler.

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