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Readers Submit Candidates Deemed Deserving of Election

Field Trial Hall of Fame Endorsements

Jun 11, 2018
Gordon Hazlewood

WORTHY CANDIDATES

It is my pleasure to bring to your attention two worthy candidates for the Field Trial Hall of Fame — Henry E. Weil and House’s Rain Cloud.

While Henry Weil may not be familiar to today’s generation of field trialers, the impact of his contributions continues to be important.

A contemporary of J. D. Boss, Arthur Curtis, and the other West Kentucky sportsmen who established the sport in the Paducah area with the first trial in 1953, Henry Weil was a charter member of the organization that became the West Kentucky Field Trial Club, serving on its Board of Directors for many years. He also served on the board of the Crab Orchard Club.

Mr. Weil, with J. D. Boss and Arthur Curtis, was an important member of the triumvirate that guided the development of the sport in Western Kentucky. They were primarily responsible for the work with the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife, United States Senators Thruston B. Morton and John Sherman Cooper, and area political leaders to obtain ownership and leases on Atomic Energy Commission and federal surplus property in the vicinity of the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant that ultimately became the famed West Kentucky Wildlife Management Area. Henry Weil, as an acknowledged leader in the Paducah area, was essential in that process.

The West Kentucky Wildlife Management Area has hosted many important trials since its inception in 1958, among them the Kentucky Quail Classic, the Quail Championship Invitational, the National Amateur Championship, the National Amateur Shooting Dog Championship, the National Brittany Championship, the National Red Setter Championship, and numerous regional and breed championships.

While his contribution to the establishment of a leading field trial venue is worthy of recognition, Henry Weil’s contributions do not end there. During this time he campaigned dogs in open competition with John S. Gates as his owner-handler. He campaigned dogs like Susan Peters, the “Queen of the Prairies”, and Hall of Fame honoree,

Social Climber, et al. Wishing to showcase his dogs close to home, Henry was instrumental in bringing open all-age competition to the Paducah area in 1960. That stake became the Kentucky Quail Classic, a leading trial in the major circuit list that has been contested continuously since that inaugural event in 1960 and continues to be one of the important events of the major circuit.

But again, the story does not end there. Henry Weil and John S. Gates recognized that the Paducah area was an appropriate venue for competition at the highest level. They were the primary movers in the reincarnation of the Quail Championship as the Quail Championship Invitational in 1964. The advent of the Invitational Championship and the Purina Top All-Age Dog Award in 1964 were history changing for the sport.

Henry Weil, however, was not only instrumental in the re-introduction of the “dream trial,” but then served as its chairman for the first 15 years of its history at Paducah. As the first chairman, Henry was responsible for establishing the standard and ethics under which the trial would be conducted then and for the future. The Invitational Championship was designed to be the most complete and most equitable test of the all-age bird dog of the sport. For more than 50 years it has lived up to that ideal largely because of the consistent attention of its leadership begun by Henry E. Weil.

It is instructive to note that all of the principals who were involved in the establishment of the West Kentucky WMA, the Kentucky Quail Classic and the Quail Championship Invitational are honorees in the Field Trial Hall of Fame — all except Henry E. Weil. It is far past time to correct that omission.

I am also very pleased to present for your consideration the dog House’s Rain Cloud, whelped June 20, 1992 in a litter by Miller’s Silver Bullett ex Judy Lyn, bred by Buddy Smith. His first owner was Joe Don House of Clinton, Ky., later Dr. Larry Mitchell and David Nutt.

Rain Cloud enjoyed a very successful competitive career, making the winners’ circle 37 times. He won six open championships — on the prairies at the Border International Open Championship and on quail at the Missouri and Alabama Open Championships. His crowning achievement was his three consecutive dominating wins of the Quail Championship Invitational — 1996, 1997, and 1998! Rain Cloud is the only three-time winner of the Invitational, the trial that seeks to recognize all-age character, consistency, and endurance.

House’s Rain Cloud was also successful as a producer. He is credited with siring 262 registered puppies. Seventy-four of his offspring won in field trial competition amassing 387 placements. He produced six champions, the best-known, perhaps, House’s Hiplain Drifter and Colonel’s Water Walker.

I have been blessed with many friends throughout the sport of field trialing. I am often asked to support individuals for recognition in the sport and I can never find reason to refuse. A couple of my friends for your consideration are Jim Crouse of Dixon, Ky., and Fred Rayl. Jim has served at every level. He has bred dogs, developed and campaigned his own dogs, and judged extensively. He is a longtime trustee of the AFTCA and has served as president of that organization. He has for many years served as the chairman and stake manager of the Kentucky Quail Classic. He has for the last several years served as a judge of the National Championship and currently serves as a director of the National Field Trial Champion Association.

Fred Rayl is of course familiar to anyone who follows the all-age major circuit competition. He has handled the winners of at least 50 open all-age championships, including all of the most prestigious trials. He has developed and brought before the public Hall of Fame dogs such as Fiddler and Fiddler’s Pride and the National Champion Heritage’s Premonition. With his father, Hall of Fame honoree W. F. Rayl, he was part of the successful careers of Builder’s Addition and Evolution. Fred has judged major trials and supported local and regional trial organizations.

John P. Russell,  Bowling Green, Ky.

DESERVING NOMINEE

I’m at the kitchen table reading the May 5 issue of The American Field wherein is the recommended qualifications for a Person to be elected to the Field Trial Hall of Fame.

“Contributions to the field trial pastime are paramount as handler, owner, breeder, patron of the sport or a combination of these facets over a goodly length of time.” I might add “be a gentleman at all times”.

I submit that Dean Lord is overly qualified to be in the Field Trial Hall of Fame.

In the early 1960s there were stories of a young man in Texas training pointing dogs. In November, 1966 a friend of ours went to San Saba, Tex., quail hunting. The friend told us he was hunting next to the training grounds of a young pro trainer named Dean Lord. Matter of fact that trainer had just won the Texas Open Shooting Dog Championship with a dog named Tiny Judy Wahoo.

“You boys need to see this guy’s dogs,” he said.

The construction business in Champaign, Ill., is slow in February. After listening to multiple tellings of this story, brother Larry and I headed south to Waynesboro, Ga. We watched Dean win the Georgia Open Shooting Dog Championship in 1967 with the gyp Tiny Judy Wahoo.

Larry and I had introduced ourselves to Dean before the start of trial. Evening meals were spent talking dogs and training approaches. We left Georgia feeling we had met a new friend. We never saw him for the next couple of years but did talk on the phone quite often. Most conversations were about a young dog, Easy Mark.

In 1970 the inaugural running of the Illinois Open Shooting Dog Championship was held on the Green River Wildlife Area near Ohio, Ill. The Illinois became known as a pheasant championship with quail and other game birds on site. Back in those days the Championship had a qualifying series. Royal Paladin Babe was named top qualifier. But Dean’s young Derby-age pointer Easy Jed had two or three finds with three exciting stops to bump. To this day I have never seen a dog fly around a course and hit birds that hard.

The two young amateurs — the Walters brothers — started Medallion Quail Finder which was called back for the final series. Dean Lord made a point to ride up and say “Nice job.”

In the final series of the 1970 Illinois OSDC, Royal Paladin Babe was named Illinois Shooting Dog Champion. Babe had eleven finds, a back and one end- swapping stop to flush. Dogs and handlers would run at that performance for the next 48 years; they never equaled or bettered Babe’s performance.

In my mind’s eye Royal Paladin Babe is The Illinois Shooting Dog Champion. With that presentation of dog by handler Dean Lord gave us or set the standard.

The standard for handler and dog presentation was on display with the likes of Commander Rocket Joe, Hedge Hopper Tex, Easy Mark, Easy Jed, Silver Height’s Cash, John’s Wahoo Berry, My Big Gun, Bootlegger, Oklahoma Pache Sue, Rex’s Smart Alec, Greenbriar Blaze, Amos Mosley, Huckleberry’s Foots, Bill’s Discard, Oliver Warhoop Jane; the Barshoe dogs — Bartender, Bushwhacker, Bang, Hard Twist, Gotcha and Panacea; Whippoorwill Razor, Quantum; Rock Acre dogs — Buckwheat, Blackhawk and Timbuctoo; Elhew Texas Snakeeye, Master Hawk, Blackhawk Wiley, and Sunny Hill Hawk.

It might be remembered that Dean Lord and Lee Cruse were the best of friends. Dean Lord played no small part in making the Grovespring, Mo., venue a dedicated field trial grounds.

Like many of you, it has been an honor to judge his dogs. It was a honor to have Dean be the one judging our dogs. For fifty plus years I have been owner, partner and friend to Dean Lord. May I request that you consider and support the nomination of Dean Lord to the Field Trial Hall of Fame.

E. L. “Bud” Walters, Lometa, Tex.

 

GORDON HAZLEWOOD

I whole-heartedly nominate Gordon Hazelwood to the Field Trial Hall of Fame. Qualified and deserving of this honor? Anyone who knows Gordon would agree that serious consideration is in order.

Most who read The American Field are familiar with Gordon’s accomplishments, I will not elaborate there. It is his dog-training gifts and his admirable character that I feel I can share.

A newcomer to horseback shooting dog stakes in the early 1980s, I had the privilege of working with Gordon. Always willing to share his knowledge and philosophy in training then and now, he continues to be a help-mate to the up-and-coming trainers in our sport.

I have enjoyed watching Gordon develop a dog — perhaps one that some might not go on with — into a beautifully finished specimen threatening his competitors in every trial entered. Foremost through Gordon’s expertise leadership, his dogs show themselves to be consummate bird-finders who love him and eagerly go with him. I cannot recall many dogs developed by Gordon found to be AWOL.

Gordon’s dogs exhibit consistency and class while running, on point and after the flush. They remain, through the years, almost mirror-images of one another, a testimony of his consistency and talent.

Not only is Gordon an excellent, respected dog trainer, but he is a top-notch “hand” at riding and training horses. Gordon Hazlewood defines the word horsemanship, typifies the description “born in the saddle.”

With clever wit and open-hearted friendliness, Gordon stands as a universal patron of the sport. He gives whole-heartedly. Be it training dogs or horses, organizing field trials or serving as a judge or organizer of field trials, his efforts are admirable and respected, no better way, than being inducted into the Field Trial Hall of Fame.

Chuck Stretz, Blackwater, Mo.

 

DR. TERY TERLEP, DVM

When I offered to help Brad Harter operate a second camera at the National Championship in 2005, I had very little experience either on the Ames Plantation field trial courses or what an all-age pointing dog was supposed to do.

While instructing me in the camera’s operation, a man, obviously a friend of Brad’s, walked up and listened to Brad’s tutorial. Then Brad asked this man to ride with me and help me select spots on the roadside where I’d be able to get shots of the action. Little did I know the impact this “gentle giant” would have on me personally and on the sport of competitive pointing dog field trials.

For the next thirteen years, Dr. Terry Terlep has ridden “shotgun” with me at the National Championship. Listening to him on his cell phone as we rode and watched the cream of the all-age pointer and setter world, it gave me an appreciation of the value this man has provided to owners, handlers, judges, scouts and breeders of all different breeds of sporting canines and horses. I would be amazed if anyone who falls into one of those categories hasn’t heard of Dr. Terlep. Some of those conversations, as I learned later, were with many leading veterinarians in the U. S. and Canada.

Not long ago, on Facebook, one comment summed up why Dr. Terlep is so revered and sought out to secure advice. “ . . . Some years ago, I had a very sick dog that was not responding to local treatment. He answered my plea for help with a phone call to my vet, followed by a shipment of lifesaving meds, at his expense. When I inquired as to what I owed him, he asked, ‘How’s the dog?’ I said, ‘fully recovered’, to which he replied, ‘That’s payment enough.’ A great man!”

Terry grew up in Indiana and as a son of the Hoosier State attended Purdue University and subsequently earned his veterinary degree there.

When he and Marilyn married, they opened a veterinary practice in Ft. Myers, Fla. He was an active member in AFTCA’s Region 16, serving four years as president.

He owned and handled his string of pointers successfully for a number of years. In the mid-1980s he owned Ch. Pike Creek Mike. Randy Patterson handled Mike and qualified him for Ames in 1984, through 1986. In 1986, Mike was named champion (no runner-up) in the 1986 Southern Championship.

In the early 1990s, Dr. Terlep had the vision and good fortune to partner with Dr. Jack Huffman of Whippoorwill Farms. He selected a pup out of a breeding that would go on to win the 1999 National Championship. In Whippoorwill Wild Card the Terlep-Huffman team would start to show the results of a selective breeding program that today is certainly one of only a handful of kennels in the U. S. to consistently produce pointers bred to meet the challenge of competitive field trialing, nationally.

With his skill and knowledge, a grandson of Wild Card, Wild Agin, was bred at Whippoorwill, assigned to Larry Huffman and successfully campaigned. He won the 2008 National Championship and in 2014 was inducted into the Field Trial Hall of Fame. Wild Agin is one of the most called for sires in the last 50 years and through the veterinary science of artificial insemination may well continue to sire champions for years to come.

Dr. Terlep’s friendship with Bob Walthall of Sunny Hill Plantation enabled them to pair Wild Agin with a bitch, Sparkles. That mating has resulted in four litters that have produced ten champions accounting for fifteen championships and six runners-up. One of Wild Agin’s sons, Whippoorwill Justified (owned by Ronnie Spears and handled by Larry), won the National Championship in 2016.

As a final note here, but not for the future, the breeding program originated by the Terlep/Huffman/Walthall collaboration produced Ransom, sire of the 2017 and 2018 National Champion Lester’s Sunny Hill Jo.

If Dr. Terlep’s passion for the sporting dog was just the forgoing, the depth of his active support ensuring our sport endures for many years to come is legend.

He adjudicated many of the major field trial championships across North America. Of the nearly fifty he’s judged, the Invitational, Continental and National Free-For-All are most noteworthy.

After deciding to “retire” from active veterinary practice, he sold his practice in Ft. Myers and moved to Boston, Ga. He can be found any morning as one of the board members of the “Barwick Boys” group and spends a good deal of time visiting plantations in South Georgia and North Florida. It’s also not unusual to find him at Clanton, Malphus, Hodges veterinary practice, which is one of the leading reproductive practices in the U. S. where he helps out.

Not one to rest on his laurels, Terry lends his knowledge of the sport, business acumen and calm disposition as a member of the board of the National Field Trial Champion Association at Ames and the Continental Championship at Dixie Plantation.

And in his (and Marilyn’s) spare time, they’ll whelp and raise a litter or two of pups for friends. (Ask Carl Bowman, Frank Fonseca, and most of the plantations in South Georgia he’s helped.)

How to end a nomination? There’s much more. But if you would consider lending your vote to elect Dr. Terlep to our hallowed Hall in Grand Junction this year, you will have voted for someone who fits the criteria and is one of the most deserving members of our sporting fraternity.

Ken Blackman, Williston, Tenn.

 

TORBEN HANSEN

I first ran into Torben in the early 1980s. I was visiting Dr. Bill Admirand in Reno and he and I joined Steve Grundmeyer and Torben for a training session at Red Rock. It was obvious that Torben was a good hand with dogs and horses and had the energy, bearing, and personality to get things done. His win record with dogs he raised and trained, his contributions as a club, regional and national official, and his popularity as a judge over the ensuing years certainly has validated my original opinion.

I will let others detail Torben’s impressive win record with his dogs. I judged some of them on several occasions and was impressed with the fact that everything he turned loose ran, was stylish, and was broke. Watching his dogs it obvious that he knew what to look for and was qualified to judge any championship in the country. This certainly has been borne out over the years.

Torben has judged all the major prairie championships in Canada and the Dakotas except the Southwestern. He has judged most of the championships in the South including the Southeastern Quail, the Continental, the Florida, and the National Invitational. When you are lucky enough to get Torben to judge, you can depend on him to ride hard, watch every dog, and deliver an opinion that will be well received.

Putting on a major trial in the Southeast is hard enough, but the effort pales in comparison to what it takes to do the same thing out West where often the only thing furnished is the dirt. The sponsoring club must then create the headquarters, haul in water, make sack lunches and plant birds. For years Torben has been the ramrod of such an effort at the Western Championships, among others.

Torben served multiple terms as president of Region 11 in the AFTCA. More recently, he was the National President of the organization where he was responsible for significant upgrades. He also has been a force on the Purina Awards Committee.

Torben Hansen has contributed to the field trial sport both regionally and nationally for four decades. Whether competing, serving as an official, or judging a major trial, his involvement has served to elevate the game. He has lived up to his stated goal of “Leaving the sport better than he found it”. Torben Hansen has earned your vote for the Hall of Fame.

Dr. Ron Deal, Albany, Ga.

 

CANDIDATE FOR CONSIDERATION

Many of us are faced with a dilemma of trying to find a worthy Hall of Fame candidate. Unfortunately, too often we are obligated to vote for those we know very little about. What we fail to embrace is what a person has done for the sport or how they have made trialing better. If you are looking for someone to endorse and don’t mind voting for a individual you may have never met I have the perfect choice. Here is someone who truly deserves to be elected. He is open minded toward all breeds and appreciates a good hunting dog or trial dog no matter the venue.

John Ivester meets all the criteria to be elected to the Field Trial Hall of Fame. He has been a asset not a hindrance to our sport. John is a gentleman who promotes field trialing not himself. Winning is important to John but doing it the correct way and exhibiting sportsmanship is his standard procedure.

As Americans we often have a tendency to honor individuals who have primarily been successful in competition through accumulating a substantial win record (most home runs, most goals, or perhaps the most celebrity endorsements). The sport of field trialing holds a higher standard to be honored with the reception of a Hall of Fame scroll.

John has competed on all levels, from his early days campaigning Brittanys in Indiana to winning the National Championship at Grand Junction with Marques Gold Rush. He is a mainstay at the Hoffman field trial area. He has made his Sawtooth Plantation in South Carolina available to many clubs at no fee. He is an honest and fair judge and leaves the politics out of his equation.

Many years ago when a struggling Michigan Shooting Dog Championship needed some quality judges with national name recognition he and his close friend Lefty Henry brought their expertise to Ionia, Mich. The entry was well over 80 dogs and was run under some very trying weather conditions.

The two winners were clear cut and obvious and were carried for most of the trial. The final brace was run in 33° temperatures with blowing sleet, rain and snow. Two local amateurs, Jack Hires and Jim Logan, were in the final brace (both men were in their mid 70s), Jim handling and Jack scouting for his longtime friend. The bracemate had been picked up early and the small gallery was anxious to return to the warm clubhouse for the anticipated announcement. The two judges, Jim, Jack and I continued on for the entire two-hour loop. Jim’s dog ran a hunting race with seven or eight finds but clearly was not in contention to win the Championship. John kept telling Lefty about how nice it was to see these two older gentlemen work together and compete at this level. As the weather worsened the bird count kept getting higher, but it became a real struggle physically for both Jim and Jack. John offered encouragement and patience for the full sixty minutes and when it was over the two oldtimers still had a little pep in their step and thanked John and Lefty for looking at their dog.

I know John enjoyed that last brace as much as he did the winners!

Jim Cipponeri, New Hudson, Mich.

 

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