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Field Trial Report

National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity

By Allen Fazenbaker | Jul 09, 2020
Open Shooting Dog Winners. From left front: Chris Catanzarite with Backcountry Bruiser, Doug McMillen with Double Deuce Zeke and Scott Forman with Grouse Hill Bullet Proof. Standing: John McKellop and Paul Tipping, the judges; Giovanni Capocci and unidentified participant.

Harrisville, Pa. — Backcountry Buddy, white and orange pointer male owned, bred and handled by the veteran Chris Catanzarite of Scenery Hill, Pa., is the 2020 winner of the National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity. Sired by Waybetter Rocky out of Backcountry Polly, Buddy ran in the third brace of the Futurity. He put on a show for Judges Thor Kain and Brian Ralph and the gallery.

Buddy and the other contestants for this prestigious Derby stake nearly did not have the opportunity to run at all. The COVID-19 pandemic that has swept the country and the world certainly has had a devastating impact on the field trial season. Virtually every field trial in the Midwest and Eastern portions of the United States was cancelled, as states instituted various shelter-in-place and social distancing directives in an attempt to quell the spread of the Sars-Cov2 virus, the causal entity of COVID-19.

The original scheduled date of the Futurity was cancelled, and the tentative new date of May 16 was not confirmed until one week prior, when the Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania eased restrictions for Butler County, where the Futurity was scheduled to be held.

Hats off to the Secretary of the National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity Chris Catanzarite who was able to secure judges, birds, and all those details that are needed to run a successful trial. In accordance with Pennsylvania directives, the clubhouse was closed, no communal food was served, and participants were asked to maintain social distancing with their field trial comrades.

This thirtieth reunion of the National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity was contested at the Oak Ridge Pointing Dog Club in Harrisville, Pa. Western Pennsylvania has been a bastion of walking shooting dog competitors for many years; its central location to many prime hunting areas, notably for grouse and woodcock, has fostered a long history of walking dogs.

This year was no different as a cadre of high quality young dogs was presented for judicial review. In spite of the shortness of the notice of a trial taking place, there was a very good turnout for the uturity, as well as the supporting Open Puppy and Open Shooting Dog Stakes.

This was the sixth year hosting the National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity for the Oak Ridge Pointing Dog Club; the grounds are a wide expanse of open fields, interspersed by spotty wooded areas, notably in the bottoms. These grounds are rolling and open, being the end result of strip mine reclamation many years prior. A dog can be seen for a ways on these grounds, and so must have good ground application and style to catch the eye of the judge.

The half-hour course utilized for this event broke away at the heavy cable gate and traveled west along a wide expanse of open gently rising grassy fields and feed strips, cresting at a small grove of woods, and then dropping into the valley on the western boundary. The course then gently curved clockwise into the open valley, following an edge, where the course crossed a drainage ditch, passing a small hummock, continuing north and then looping slowly to the east, following a woodsline along the northern ridge of the reclaimed strip mine.

After crossing a small creek flowing from the wooded section on the northeast portion of the property, the course entered an open field interspersed with small bushes and other objectives, then turned south at a small pond fondly referred to as the “Regis Pond,” and followed the southern edge of the field to end at the observation deck.

The National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity Association is so grateful to the board of the Oak Ridge Pointing Dog Club for their willingness to host this prestigious event. The grounds were in exceptional shape, thanks in part to weather conditions the previous month that had permitted some flush of new growth, but not excessive.

This year saw a total of seventeen Derbies vying for the National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity honors. This number was down slightly from last year, but still very respectable given the COVID-19 situation.

Waybetter Rocky (PM) sired the highest number of competing Derbies this year at five, and three of those placed. Blast Zone (SM) sired two, as did Bud of Piney Woods (PM). Backcountry Polly (PF) showed the highest number of get with four.

In addition, the weekend saw a very respectable entry of puppies and shooting dogs for the supporting stakes.

The officers of the National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity, President Tom DeRosa, Vice-President Norm Meeder, and Secretary-Treasurer Chris Catanzarite, wish to thank all those who entered their dogs and for supporting this important walking breeders’ stake.

Futurity judges are especially critical to the success of this sport, as they must judge the promise of potential champions. This year’s selection of judges represented a vast amount of experience in running, breeding, and training walking shooting dogs.

Our Futurity judges were Thor Kain of Carbondale, Pa., and Brian Ralph of Sandy Lake, Pa. The Puppy Stake was overseen by Dave Park of Uniontown, Pa., and Thor Kain. The Shooting Dog judges were John McKellop of Guys Mills, Pa., and Paul Tipping of Washington, Pa. These gentlemen spent many hours in the saddle in support of our sport, and their verdicts were well received and appreciated.

This reporter noted that every judge made the comment that there were not any “bad” dogs in any of the stakes . . . some dogs were better this day than others, and dogs made mistakes, but across the board essentially every dog that showed during the weekend showed the traits of a quality bird dog. Either folks have been doing a lot of training with that extra time, or our dogs are simply improving each year; this reporter suspects it’s a little of both!

Our field trial sport would not be at such a high quality level were it not for the support of several sponsors. Purina has been a stalwart supporter of the National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity for many years. This year, as in past years, Purina donated ProPlan food for the winners. Our thanks to Purina rep  Greg Blair and the people of Purina for their outstanding support of our sport. Not only does Purina provide support of our trial, they also produce a high quality food that supports your canine nutritional needs. If you want your dogs to eat the best, choose Purina products.

SportDOG Brand©, our other major sponsor, is a manufacturer of high quality electronic training equipment. Jim Morehouse of SportDOG Brand© was most gracious in donating SportDOG Brand© collars for use by the club. SportDOG Brand© carries a wide variety of high quality e-collars, as well as trackers, bark collars, and other canine-related training equipment. Their products are durable, reliable, and offered at a very reasonable cost. And most importantly, they back up their products with personal service. Thanks to SportDOG Brand© for your support of our field trial sports and our Walking Futurity.

Continuing the tradition of offering a program booklet for the Futurity, a 30th National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity booklet was available to all participants and spectators. Such booklets don’t just happen; they require substantial effort and behind-the-scenes work. We were fortunate to have two special ladies who once again stepped up to the plate and provided the effort and work to produce a very nice program for our 30th annual celebration.

Special thanks to Deborah Fazenbaker of Kingsville, Ohio and Teri Propst of Edinboro, Pa., for gathering sponsors, designing, and producing this great memento of our Futurity. This booklet continues to be an annual part of our Futurity and it is well received. For those of you who were unable to obtain a copy, an online version is available on the National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity Facebook page.

Be sure to visit our sponsors and thank them as well for supporting the National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity with their purchase of a page in our program, including: J’s Kennel (Jeff Angott), Hypointe Kennels (Nick Mellon), Glassilaun Kennels (Jamie Nee), Backcountry Kennels (Chris Catanzarite), Beaver Valley Pointer and Setter Club, Mike Husenits, The Ruffed Grouse Society, Conneaut Creek Red Setters (Al Fazenbaker), Wicked Thunder Kennels (Teri Propst), Long Gone Setters (Lloyd Murray), Kendal Hills Kennels (Tim Tufts), Hughesview Kennels (Dave and Mark Hughes), Caliber Peak Kennels (Sarah Gomes), Double Deuce Kennels (Doug McMillen), Piney Woods Kennels (Richard Warters), Lion Country Supply, and of course Purina and SportDOG Brand©. Thanks to all for your support!

We also wish thank our professional handlers who are an essential part of our sport and its success. Mark Hughes, Hall-of-Famer Dave Hughes, Scott Forman and Marc Forman ran dogs during the weekend, and their support is much appreciated.

Last, but certainly not least, a huge thank you to everyone who pitched in and worked so hard to make this Futurity a success.

Our National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity Secretary Chris Catanzarite, Brandon Kreuer (board member for Oak Ridge Pointing Dog Club), club members Dave Park, Norm Meeder, Doug McMillen, and Andrew Dawson assisted in bird planting, line marshalling, and many other duties to keep things moving. The old expression “many hands make light work” was certainly evident this weekend as we had many helpers, and in the course of events made many new friends in the field trial fraternity.

My apologies if I missed anyone. And, a big “thank you” to all the participants who entered their Derbies, puppies, and shooting dogs, and supported the efforts of the weekend.

FUTURITY RUNNING

As noted, Backcountry Buddy is the 2020 winner of the National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity; his performance and others are detailed below.

Taking the red ribbon was Waybetter Brutus (PM); running in the 5th brace, he was sired out of Waybetter Rocky ex Nehawka Amazin Sue, and owned, bred, and handled by Carl Bishop of Punxsutawney, Pa.

The third place honors were earned by Blue Ribbon’s Harper Bella (PF), sired by Bud of Piney Woods ex Blue Ribbon Bella and owned, bred and handled by Martin Festa of Sugarloaf, Pa.

Rounding out the placements was Backcountry Girlfriend (PF), sired by Waybetter Rocky ex Backcountry Polly, and owned, bred and handled by Chris Catanzarite.

Grouse Hill Smokey (PM/Marc Forman) and Mojo’ Lucky Strike (SM/Dave Hughes) broke away at the cable and stretched out to the crest of the breakaway field. At 6 they were found standing in a feed strip over the hill. With shots fired, Smokey maintained a steady composure, with Lucky taking a few steps and stopping on a hard whoa. Smokey suffered an unproductive at 12 in the bottom corner, and again at 15 on the treeline below the observation deck. Crossing the ditch, Smokey scored a find in the eastern field with Lucky backing; both displayed good Derby manners on the flush and shot. At 29 Lucky failed to live up to her namesake as she pointed, chased and caught a bird, and she was on the leash. Smokey finished going forward and exhibited a moderate race throughout with a good handle. Lucky was a bit shorter in race, and sometimes lateral.

Twilight Dancing Shadow (SF/Mark Hughes) and Blue Ribbon’s Mickelson (PM/Festa) had a moderate and forward race. Mickelson scored the first find at 10 in some cover below the observation deck with good Derby manners on the flush and shot. At 12 Shadow pointed near the treeline below the observation deck, self relocated, and stopped as the bird flushed. Shot was fired and the dog held steady. Shadow scored her second find at the creek crossing, taking 7 or 8 steps on the flush, but stopping on a whoa from the handler. A divided find was carded at 19 in a feed strip on the north side of the course, with both dogs taking a short step on the flush. Mickelson scored a find at 22 in the eastern field. Shadow showed a haphazard honor, and was collared until the bird was flushed. Mickelson pointed at 28 on the woodsline traveling toward the observation deck, with Shadow backing. Both dogs held as the bird lifted wild and a shot was fired from a good ways off. Both dogs finished forward with a moderate pace.

Backcountry Buddy (PM/Catanzarite) and French’s Grouse Ringer Woodie (M. Forman) stretched out on the breakaway. Woodie scored a find at 5 near the bird pens; he gave a short chase on the flush but stopped with a hard “Whoa!” The Futurity winner, Buddy, scored his first find at 6 in some cover heading toward the corner, pointing high on both ends. Woodie came in to back. Both dogs showed broke manners. Woodie pointed at 9, then relocated and held. Buddy came in to honor. Woodie took a couple short steps on the flush, Buddy showing good manners. Woodie scored a find at 14 below the hummock with some ticking as handler approached. Buddy came in to back. The flush brought a couple steps by Woodie, but Buddy was motionless. At 17 both dogs pointed on feed strips on the north side of the course. Woodie exhibited substantial ticking as the handler approached; both dogs were steady to wing and shot. Buddy again pointed with exceptional style, showing a high intensity and composure throughout. Buddy pointed at 21 with Woodie backing. A recent kill was found in front of the dog and he was moved forward. At 27 Woodie stopped on a wild flush, but then decided to go along with the bird. A shot was fired and Buddy, which had just come into the area, stopped on the shot. Both dogs were sent forward, and both finished strong to the front.

Wayback Spectre (PM/Park) scored a find at 7, with Twilight Poker Face (SM/D. Hughes) honoring, in some structure near the bird pen at the top of the breakaway course. Spectre showed good Derby manners at flush and shot. At 15 Poker Face went for a run with a bird and eventually stopped on a sharp command from the handler. At 23 he pointed a bird on the north side of the course, under the deer stand, displaying broke manners. Spectre was wide and lateral, coursing back to the far western portion of the course, and a bit of a challenge on handling. Both dogs finished to the front.

Waybetter Brutus (PM/Bishop) was found standing at 5 at the top of the breakaway course, but could not produce a bird. Caliber Peak Silver Jett (PF/M. Hughes) scored a find at the same time just over the top of the hill, showing broke manners for the handler. Jett pushed a bird at 9 in a feed strip below the observation deck, then ran about 30 yards and pointed the bird. The handler collared the dog and moved on. Both dogs showed wide casts, crossing the ditch and coursing to the far north side of the course. At 14 Brutus spun and slammed on point, with Jett backing. The handlers being several hundred yard away, they were about halfway to the action when Jett moved in to claim the point. As the handlers approached, Jett elected to do the flushing and took the quail for a ride. Brutus took a step, but otherwise was steady throughout the saga. At 19, still up on the north side of the course, Jett scored a find, showing broke manners for her handler. Brutus pointed at 21 in a feed strip close to the stream. As the handler was looking, Jett showed and gave a vigorous look as well before moving on. Brutus was staunch throughout; no bird was produced by the handler or Jett. Both dogs showed a wide race, staying to the front and showing a nice handle. Brutus’ pace coupled with his exceptional temperament on his bird earned him the red ribbon.

Grouse Hill Duke (PM/Scott Forman) carded a find at 5 in the small grove atop the breakaway course; he showed broke manners and looked classy on his stand. Just over the hill Duke was found standing, and Twilight Shadow (PF/M. Hughes) likewise, about 30 yards farther down the hill. Forman flushed and shot, and both birds lifted on the shot. Duke showed broke manners, and Shadow also with good composure, with a small step on the shot. At 14 Shadow was found standing in some structure below the hummock, with Duke honoring. A bird was produced, but would not fly as both dogs displayed broke manners. Shadow pointed at 23 along the treeline near Regis Pond. She self relocated and locked up solid for her handler who produced a bird. She was steady to wing and shot. Both dogs showed a moderate race and stayed to the front with nice handling displayed.

Backcountry Girlfriend (PF/Catanzarite) and Blue Ribbon’s Harper Bella (PF/Festa). The 7th brace produced the fourth and third place winners, respectively. Harper scored the first find at the top of the breakaway, with Girl honoring. Both dogs exhibited good Derby manners, with only a small step on the flush and shot. Girl pointed in a feed strip moving toward the corner, with Harper backing. No bird could be produced. Girl pointed again at 18 in the field below the observation deck, showing broke manners as the bird lifted and a shot was fired. Girl pointed again below the hummock, with Harper backing. The bird was produced after a short relocation. As the dogs were moved on, Harper swung up the hummock and scored a find at the top, showing broke manners on her bird. Girl pointed in the field on the north side and showed  staunch composure through an extensive flushing attempt, at last producing a bird. Both dogs stretched to the front and were found standing on separate birds in the field before Regis Pond; both displayed broke manners and looked classy on their bird work. Harper scored an additional find at time near the woods on the south side of Regis Pond; again she showed good manners. Girl made a wide cast to the east, beyond Regis Pond, and then cast around to catch the front at time. Both dogs exhibited a pleasing and forward pattern and worked with purpose for their handlers to earn their placements.

Grouse Hill Pepper (PF/Capocci) was found standing at the top of the hill at 4, with Apple Annie Sweet Delight (PF/M. Hughes) backing. A pile of feathers was found in front of the dog and she was collared and moved forward. Both dogs were found standing at 8 over the hill. Pepper showed broke manners on her bird, and Annie good Derby manners, taking a short step on the flush. At 11 both dogs were found standing along the treeline below the observation deck. There was some question as to whether one dog was honoring, but Pepper elected to get the bird moving and did so with a hearty chase. Annie followed and they put the bird to a good flight. Gathering the dogs and moving forward, the handlers crossed the ditch to the north side. Pepper was wide and out of the pocket, ranging to the western portion of the grounds. Annie made a nice cast along the north side of the course moving forward and was found standing at 24 on the treeline near Regis Pond; no bird could be procured in spite of a relocation. Pepper showed to the front, and both dogs finished forward.

Herbie’s Shasta La Vista (SF/M. Forman) scored her first find at 15 below the hummock. She showed some ticking, but tightened up as the handler approached. She scored again at 23 in the field before Regis Pond, again with some ticking. Shasta finished with a moderate and forward race.

Harrisville, Pa., May 16 — One Course

Judges: Thor Kain and Brian Ralph

NATIONAL WALKING SHOOTING DOG FUTURITY — 12 Pointers and 5 Setters

1st—BACKCOUNTRY BUDDY, 1682654, pointer male, by Waybetter Rocky—Backcountry Polly. Chris Catanzarite, owner and handler.

2d—WAYBETTER BRUTUS, 1683225, pointer male, by Waybetter Rocky—Nehawka Amazin Sue. Carl & Collin Bishop, owners; Carl Bishop, handler.

3d—BLUE RIBBON’S HARPER BELLA, 1682768, pointer female, by Bud of Piney Woods—Blue Ribbon Bella. Martin Festa, owner and handler.

4th—BACKCOUNTRY GIRLFRIEND, 1682667, pointer female, by Waybetter Rocky—Backcountry Polly. Chris Catanzarite, owner and handler.

 

Gene Uhlman Puppy Classic

The Gene Uhlman Puppy Classic is named after the iconic Gene Uhlman, a native of western Pennsylvania where he began his love for field trial bird dogs while attending Charleroi High School, south of Pittsburgh. Gene was a high school teacher, but his love of bird dogs eventually changed his career, and he became a full time dog trainer until his death in 1992. Gene developed numerous winning dogs including Counterdrive, Countercharge, Keystone Skeezie, Elhew Link’s Jewel, Rollin Rebel, and many others. The National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity is pleased to name this Puppy Classic in his honor.

The Gene Uhlman Puppy Classic started the day’s activities, breaking away Saturday morning on the east end of the course near Regis Pond and heading west toward the observation deck. Turning north, the course crossed the ditch, traveled a gradual east, and finished up near Regis Pond.

This year’s Puppy Classic was won handily by Blaze’s Wild Fire, pointer male handled by Justin Mason of North Huntington, Pa. Taking the red was

Redrum Rosie, handled by Rob Matson for owner Mike Husenits of West Lebanon, Pa. Rounding out the placements was Ralphy’s Herbie B, handled by Brian Ralph of Sandy Lake, Pa.

Sammy (PF/Matson) and Spark (PM/Fried) broke away with extremely wide casts and were not seen for several minutes. Both showed as the gallery reached the observation deck, and both continued to show wide and sometimes out of pocket application. On the north side of the course, Sammy responded to the handler and stayed to the front. Spark was less inclined, but continued with an extremely wide ground pattern. Both dogs finished far to the front.

Cap (PM/M. Hughes) and Ralphy’s Herbie B (SM/Ralph) showed pleasing and forward races for the judges. Herbie showed some nice applications to cover and pleased the judges to take the third place spot.

Josie (SF/D. Hughes) was a classy moving setter, but was a bit short on race. Bo (SM/Kadzig) showed an extremely wide and forward race, but was rough on the handle at times and had a period of absence.

Moxy (SF/M. Hughes) showed a short race and at times was a bit tentative in application. Thanos (SM/Evans) ran a very wide race, hitting the edges, but not exhibiting much purpose for his handler.

Blaze’s Wild Fire (PM/Mason) and Rugger (PM/Kadzig) showed mature forward ground application. Blaze showed a classy way of moving and was a pleasure to watch. Both dogs showed pleasing manners and were purposeful in their application. Blaze showed a wide and forward race to take the blue.

Pearl (PF/McMillen) was absent for a few minutes early in the brace, but was back in the pocket and showed a very pleasing application for her handler, with some nice purposeful moves. Rev (SM/Uphold) likewise was forward and displayed good hunting application, albeit a bit shorter in range than his bracemate.

Bore (SM/Uphold) and Rumble (SM/Hughes). Bore started out fairly short in range, but improved as the brace continued. Both dogs showed a pleasing forward and medium race to finish forward.

Redrum Rosie (PF/Matson) ran as a bye. Rosie put on a nice show for her handler with a forward and purposeful race, and a pleasing handle, earning her the second place.

Judges: Thor Kain and Dave Park

OPEN PUPPY — 7 Pointers

1st—BLAZE’S WILD FIRE, unreg., pointer male, by Erin’s Wild Justice—Hollywood Hot N Tod. Justin Mason, owner and handler.

2d—REDRUM ROSIE, 1685596, pointer female, by Erin’s Redrum—Brave Heart Cassie. Mike Husenits, owner; Rob Matson, handler.

3d—RALPHY’S HERBIE B, 1687552, setter male, by Stokely’s Frankie B—Ralphy’s Bella. Brian Ralph, owner and handler.

 

Open Shooting Dog Stake

The Open Shooting Dog Stake was won in convincing fashion by Backcountry Bruiser, pointer male owned and handled by Chris Catanzarite. Bruiser, out of Erin’s War Creek ex Backcountry Tornado, ran in the 8th brace; his performance is noted below. Earning second place was Double Deuce Zeke, pointer male owned and handled by Doug McMillen of Dubois, Pa. Taking the third place slot was Grouse Hill Bullet Proof, owned by Giovanni Capocci and handled by Scott Forman.

Lake Storm Trexette (SF/Kreuer) and La Sombra (PM/D. Hughes). Starting on Saturday afternoon after the conclusion of the Futurity, Storm scored the first find of the Shooting Dog Stake at 7 over the hill from the breakaway course; good manners were displayed. “Trico” was absent from the breakaway, showing to the front at 13. Storm scored at 16 near the hummock, with a spin and a small step on the flush. She scored an additional find at 19 in a feed strip on the north side, with Trico backing; a  turn to mark, and a small step as the bird flushed. Storm scored a find again at 25 in the field near Regis Pond, showing good manners after an extensive flushing attempt. At 28 Trico was found dug in on the woods to the north of Regis Pond; a bird was produced and Trico showed good manners. Both of these dogs showed very wide races with numerous long casts to the far reaches of the course. Trico was absent for a significant portion of the brace. Both dogs finished strong and forward.

Backcountry Missy (PF/Catanzarite) and A Distant Spec (PF/M. Hughes). Spec scored the first find of the brace, displaying good manners as a bird was flushed at the top of the breakaway course. At 13 both dogs were found standing near the base of the hummock; each dog produced a bird, and both were mannerly through the flush and shot. Missy scored a find at 19. As the shot was fired Spec stopped in the vicinity. Both dogs were sent forward. Spec scored a find at 23 in the field just across the creek heading toward Regis Pond. Missy came in to honor, but then decided against it and moved forward with the rising bird and was on the leash. Spec finished to the front.

Double Deuce Sage (PF/D. Hughes) scored her first find at 5, showing good manners with her bird. True Choice (PF/Fried) was on the leash after an indiscretion with a bird. Sage scored again at 11 below the observation deck, all in order. She scored an additional find in the east field near Regis Pond, good manners displayed. Sage showed a pleasing and forward ground pace and was carried by the judges for several braces of the stake.

Celtic’s Spectacular Bid (ISM/Fazenbaker), callname Mac, carded his first find in the open fields near the back corner, good manners displayed.

Thunderhills Pale Rider (PM/M. Hughes), callname Benny, scored a find at 11 in the feed strips below the observation deck. Mac dug into heavy cover in the woods below the observation deck; an extensive flushing effort could not produce a bird. Upon relocation, the dog stopped in some very thick cover. A bird was flushed from the thick cover about six feet above, good manners displayed. Benny scored again in the feed strips on the north side of the course, with good manners, but was observed under a bird shortly thereafter and was on the hook. Mac finished to the front with a moderate shooting dog race.

Double Deuce Zeke (PM/McMillen) and Dust Devil Maisie (SF/Fried). Starting back up on Sunday morning, Zeke suffered an unproductive at the top of the breakaway course. Dust Devil was a scratch. Zeke briefly established point in the corner, but moved on before the handler arrived. He scored a find at 16 at the top of the hummock, showing nice retention through flush and shot. He had an additional find at 24 in the east field near Regis Pond, all in order. Zeke showed a moderate shooting dog race, stayed in the pocket and with a pleasing handle, finishing to the front to earn the red ribbon.

Wildland Warrior (PF/Munden) and Texas Iron Man (SM/Klein) disappeared over the breakaway hill. “Rusty” was found standing at the bird pen and was moved on. “Lola” was found standing in the far corner at 7, showing good manners as the bird lifted. At 11 both dogs pointed in the field below the observation deck, about 40 yards from one another. Extensive flushing efforts by both handlers failed to produce a bird, although feathers from a recent kill were observed; the dogs were moved forward. A divided find was scored at the top of the hummock, with a single lifting and good manners displayed by both dogs. Lola scored an additional find in the field near Regis Pond. The bird lifted while the handler was quite a ways off, with a shot being fired and the dog maintaining good composure. Rusty spent a few minutes in the woods north of the course, but showed to the front, and both dogs showed strong and forward finishes.

Pine Swomp Woody (SM/Blakley) carded a find at 6 at the top of the breakaway course, with a small step taken on the flush. Double Deuce Butters (PM/D. Hughes) showed a big run, with a cast to the far eastern portion of the course as the handlers were moving out of the back corner. At 20 Butters was found standing, dug in the woods near the hummock; good manners were evident as the bird was flushed. At 25 Woody elected to have a quail snack, and he was on the leash. Butters finished wide and forward and showed a pleasing handle throughout the brace.

Kendal Hills Dawson Creek (PM/M. Hughes) and Backcountry Bruiser (PM/ Catanzarite). The winner of this stake, Bruiser, had his first find at the top of the breakaway course, with a bird lifting from an open grassy area, and the dog pointing from a good ways. He showed exceptional composure on his find, with good retention through flush and shot and high on both ends. Bruiser carded his second find at 11 below the observation. A deceased quail was found in front of the dog, may he rest in peace. Bruiser again showed exceptional style throughout. Dawson had not been seen since the breakaway and showed at 15 to the front. Bruiser showed a wide forward cast, taking in the entire western portion of the grounds to the beehive house, then traveling east along the northern treeline, and slammed on point in a feed strip just before the creek, showing his good manners as the bird lifted. Dawson was found standing in the field near Regis Pond at 20; no bird could be produced. At 22 Dawson pointed again, with Bruiser honoring. Another recently deceased quail was found in front of the dog. Good manners were displayed by all. Both dogs finished to the front. Bruiser’s exceptional style and classy way of going earned him the blue ribbon.

Brave Heart Cassie (PF/D. Hughes) and Halestorm (PF/Park). Halestorm, aka Liz, scored the first find at the top of the breakaway course, good manners displayed. Shortly thereafter Liz moved forward and pointed at the bird pen, with Cassie backing. A single was found and both dogs displayed good manners. Liz was on the leash at 11 after pushing a bird and scooping it for a retrieve. At 16 Cassie pointed, but the handler did not like what he saw and picked up the dog.

Grouse Hill Annie (PF/Capocci) and Shady Hills Zena (PF/M. Forman). Zena made the first game contact with a find at the top of the breakaway course, showing good manners. She pointed again at 8 in the corner, but only feathers were found. Annie had not been seen since the breakaway. At 14 both dogs were found standing east of the hummock in a feed strip, Annie with the find, Zena honoring. As the handlers approached, Annie elected to flush on her own and gave a hearty chase for about 30 yards, ending her bid. Zena maintained good manners throughout the incident. Zena was moved forward and shortly had a find in a feed strip on the north section, with good manners displayed. At 21 Zena bumped a bird and elected to ensure a good flight, and she was on the leash.

Double Deuce Dexter (PM/D. Hughes) and Texas Free Mason (SM/ Klein) broke away and made wide casts to the front. Mason scored the first find at 8 in the corner, with good composure on his bird. He scored a second find shortly thereafter in a feed strip below the observation deck, again with good composure. Dexter was on the scoreboard at 12, with Mason backing, near the hummock; all was in order. They repeated the process a few moments later, again with all good manners being shown. Both dogs showed a wide cast along the north side of the course. Mason slammed on point at 17 in an open grassy area, with Dexter honoring. An extensive flushing attempt could not produce a bird. As Dexter was collared to move on, Mason was tapped, but refused to budge. A bird was found buried in the thick grass just in front. A shot was fired and all was in order, with the dogs moving forward. Dexter scored a find at 22 in a feed strip just before the creek crossing, with Mason honoring. Dexter and Mason repeated the sequence in the east field with a single lifting. Both dogs finished strong and to the front.

Warrior Zeke (PM/M. Hughes) scored at the top of the breakaway at 4, everything in order. Zeke scored again in a feed strip below the observation deck, taking a couple of small steps toward the handler after the sequence. All On (PF/Capocci) was found pointing at 13 along the woodsline just after crossing the ditch; a small step was noted as the bird lifted. Zeke, which was forward, also scored a find in a feed strip on the north side of the course, good manners displayed. He scored again in the east field at 24 with a few short steps noted. At 26 All On pointed in the east field, but elected to handle the flush herself and took an extended jog to ensure a good flight, ending her bid for the day. Zeke finished forward, although shortened the last 10 minutes or so.

Leslie’s Jigster (SM/S. Forman) had a find at 5, and again at 7, over the breakaway hill, with good manners displayed in both cases. Running along a feed strip below the observation deck, “Jiggs” pointed, but no bird could be found. Moving forward about 50 yards, he pointed again, with Caliber Peak Storm Warning (PF/D. Hughes), callname Siren, honoring. After an absence of several minutes a bird was found. Siren took a couple small steps. Jiggs was solid. At 22 Siren was observed in the pine woods west of the hummock giving a hearty chase to some quail in the pines, and she was finished for the day. Jiggs had contact with a quail at 23, stopped, then had a change of heart and decided to accompany the bird on its flight to end his bid.

Blast Off (SM/Forman) had an early contact with a bird on the breakaway, and unfortunately attempted to swallow the bird, causing some respiratory distress which was fortunately corrected by some folks in the gallery. Wayward Flyin Tomato (SM/Hughes), callname Cooper, moved forward, scoring a find at 5 at the top of the breakaway, with good manners displayed. He scored again in the eastern field near Regis’ Pond, again with good manners. Cooper ran a moderate and forward race and finished to the front.

Pistol Grip (PM/D. Hughes) had a short tenure as he scooped a bird at the top of the breakaway course and was picked up. Conneaut Creek Lake Erie Storm (ISF/Fazenbaker) was found in the same vicinity, but was picked up by the handler as he did not like her demeanor.

Springflow’s Backcountry P (PM/ Catanzarite) and Jars Way Leroy (SM/M. Hughes). This was likewise a short brace. Both dogs pointed a bird about halfway up the hill of the breakaway course, then teamed up and gave an enthusiastic chase across the fields.

I’ll Be Back (SM/M. Hughes), callname Mickey, scored nicely at the top of the breakaway. Grouse Hill Bullet Proof (SM/S. Forman), taking a wide and forward cast, scored his first find at 13 near the hummock, with good manners displayed. He scored again in the open fields on the north side of the course, showing good composure with an extensive flushing effort. Mickey pointed at the same time in a feed strip near the creek crossing; a dead bird was produced, a shot fired, and both dogs moved forward. Proof was found pointing near Regis Pond; a single was produced. Mickey pointed in the same area, but no bird could be produced. At 26 Mickey pointed again in the east field; a bird was produced after an extensive flushing effort. Both dogs finished to the front, with Proof’s performance earning him a yellow ribbon.

Conneaut Creek Rum Runner (ISM (Fazenbaker) and Double Deuce Megan (SF/D. Hughes) were quickly over the breakaway hill. Runner moved to the corner and dug in deep, taking several minutes to pull him back on course. Meg scored a find at 11 with good manners. She scored again at 17, but her third bird contact did not please the handler and he picked up. Runner scored a find at time in the east field near Regis Pond with good manners.

Grouse Hill Prima (PF/Capocci) scored a find in the woods at the top of the breakaway course with good manners displayed. Braggabull (PF/M. Hughes), callname Emmie, was found standing at the point north of the breakaway course. A bird was found close to the dog and she maintained good composure through the flush and shot. Prima scored a good find in the feed strips below the observation deck, good manners displayed. At 14 Emmie pointed with Prima honoring, but no bird could be found. Prima scored a find near Regis Pond with good manners displayed. Emmie likewise pointed in the woods near the pond, a bird lifting and good manners shown. Prima dug into heavy cover behind Regis Pond, but it was nearly impossible to attempt a flush in the cover so she was collared and moved forward. Both dogs finished to the front.

Remember, Futurities are called “Futurities” because they are the future of our sport. An examination of this Futurity, as well as most other Futurities in the country, will find that Futurity placements produce the majority of our bird dog champions.

Please support the National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity by nominating your litter! We hope to see you next year at the 31st National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity.

Judges: John McKellop and Paul Tipping

OPEN SHOOTING DOG — 23 Pointers, 12 Setters
and 3 Irish Setters

1st—BACKCOUNTRY BRUISER, 1672645, pointer male, by Erin’s War Creek—Backcountry Tornado. Chris Catanzarite, owner and handler.

2d—DOUBLE DEUCE ZEKE, 1673940, pointer male, by Double Deuce Peter—Funseeker’s Holiday. Douglas E. McMillen, Jr., owner and handler.

3d—GROUSE HILL BULLET PROOF, 1664897, setter male, by Waymaker Super Sam—Vitali Grouseringer Purdy. Giovanni Capocci, owner; Scott Forman, handler.

 

 

 

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