American Field

Field Trial Report

Region 16 Amateur Shooting Dog Championship

By Allison Stewart | Jan 12, 2018
Region 16 Amateur Shooting Dog Championship Winners. Front, from left: Allison Stewart, Beckworth’s Firefighter with Alan York and Miller’s Bring the Heat with Jack and Fran Miller. Behind: Brian Peterson, Judges Tommy Walker and Ted Roach; Pat Varner, and Johnny and Joyce Taylor.

Union Springs, Ala. — The 2017 running of the Region 16 Amateur Shooting Dog Championship was held amidst the pines and ground cover of the Conecuh Station Plantation in Union Springs, Ala. The generous hospitality of Becky and Tony Gibson cannot be overstated and their tireless devotion to running field trials in the Southeast is incomparable.

Ted Roach, a welcomed addition to Union Springs in the past few years, along with Tommy Walker, a familiar face in the saddle and from Gay, Ga., presided over the running. Pat Varner, who grew up riding the grounds at Conecuh Station, diligently marshalled the trial knowing every turn of the courses.

The roar of the bird dog buggy alerted participants that Kenneth Newman was on his way up the road each morning and evening. Kenneth, who has become known to the field trial family as a dependable friend, also made sure everyone had plenty of snacks and drinks between the braces as well as a view from the top for those who did not care to ride a horse.

Longtime residents of Bullock County George Cole, Jimmy Duncan and Tommy Mote, no stranger to the field trial community, greeted everyone early each morning with warm fresh Southern breakfasts. Delicious, warm barbecue lunches were prepared by Wiley’s Smuteye Grill.

In the evenings, a crowd gathered at the Union Springs Country Club for cocktails and supper, with Saturday night being particularly special with Becky and Tony hosting a divine quail supper.

We would like to thank Purina whose assistance, along with gracious donations for the winners, was greatly appreciated.


Named champion was Beckworth’s Firefighter, six-year-old white and orange pointer male by Erin’s Brave Heart, owned and handled by Alan York of Louisville, Ga. “Dan” ran in the 5th brace on the first day and exhibited an attention keeping, strong forward race. Hunting the cover hard, he found his first covey at 28 in a handsome point. York pointed Dan in the front at 37 showing good ground application and another confirmed find at 50. Dan finished the hour strong with a stylish point at 56.

This was Dan’s third championship win after winning Region 16 Amateur Shooting Dog in the 2016-2017 season along with the Montana Open Shooting Dog Championship, where he was handled by Jason Williams.

Miller’s Bring the Heat, eight-year-old pointer female handled and scouted by power couple Jack and Fran Miller of Barwick, Ga., garnered the runner-up laurels by virtue of a wide ground race and application to the cover. “Lacy,”  white, orange and ticked pointer female, ran with style covering the grounds in a fluid manner, tail pointed forever upward. She had her first find at 29 handled with impeccable fashion followed by a very sophisticated point noted with unwavering confidence at 54.


The competition began under clear skies with cool morning braces, warming to the 60s after lunch.

Pineywoods Jack, fancy setter male handled by owner Darron Hendley, and Ray Pinson handling Phillips Windline were first to the line. Hendley found the first big covey of the trial and Jack was steadfast as the covey rose around him with a wind that heightened the hair on the setter’s back. In a worthy performance, Jack thrilled with a fine race applying to the cover.

Miller’s Bring the Heat and Rentz’s Fire and Ice (Joe Rentz) sailed through the countryside together, their tails flying high. Fire and Ice had one find before the retrieval unit was requested at 54.

Miller’s Armed and Dangerous (Harvey Crosby) and Dragon Fly (Jim Hughes) must have smelled the birds at their breakaway as a swift ride ensued through the countryside to find them on a divided find atop the hill behind the kennels and pond dam.

Miller’s Special Edition and Conway Twitty (Alan Atkins) shared nice coveys at 10 and 19. Special Edition scored a find on the edge at 34 with Conway Twitty backing neatly.

Sugarknoll Bushwacker (Pete Del Collo) did not finish the hour but exhibited a love for the hunt.

Redland’s Jacked Up (Rentz) showed to be quite the determined hunter producing his first covey at 13 marked by a beautiful flush. Jacked Up went on to card finds at 27, 34, 52 and 53 before finishing with a beautiful cast across the open field. Heard Hill’s Jaybird was up at 31.

Iron and Oak (Ross Leonard) began the second morning with a point at 2 just atop the hill before the green field with Joe Bruner’s Smokin Joe’s Bandit backing. As we crossed into the green field both dogs dashed into the woods and were picked up at 15 and 33, respectively.

The next brace welcomed Johnny Taylor handling and his wife Joyce scouting Absolute Diva, a classy pointer female that finished out front but without bird work. Elhew G Force made an impressive cast at 19 but was not seen again.

Billy Ben and Dubose’s Daddy Boy were loosed by the little pond. Billy Ben, handled by Tim Moore, made a remarkable cast across the open field before a swing into the low country by little river at 14. Dubose called point at 29 but the dog lacked manners with birds.

Seekin A Thrill came up the edge at 37 to twist around in a confident point. Joe’s Sun Dust was seen blazing the edge and went out of sight before the retrieval device was requested.

Crosby’s Waiting Till Midnight broke through the pines to hunt the fields on the left before the chopper field. Point was called at 12 but no birds were produced. Peterson’s Prime Passion ran quickly with determination in a forward race but revealed her youth at 25.

The trial concluded with Miller’s California Dreaming and Absolute Magic Liz. Both pointers made a beautiful dash up the hillside, hunting proudly through the pines. California Dreaming revealed a covey rise by the pond at 14 and was seen pointing again as we entered the open field; unfortunately, no bird work here.

What a time was had amidst the snappy pines and grounds of Conecuh Station Plantation.

Union Springs, Ala., November 10

Judges: Ted Roach and Tommy Walker


[One-Hour Heats] — 21 Pointers and 3 Setters

Winner—BECKWORTH’S FIREFIGHTER, 1645188, pointer male, by Erin’s Brave Heart—B W Molly. Alan York, owner and handler.

Runner-up—MILLER’S BRING THE HEAT, 1622745, pointer female, by Lester’s Snowatch—L G White Lily. Jack & Fran Miller, owners; Jack Miller, handler.


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