American Field

Valiant Wins 2020 Title

Southern Championship

By Brad Kennedy | Jul 22, 2020
Valiant Winner of the Southern Championship

BLUE MOUNTAIN, MISS. Twenty-four dogs were drawn for the 2020 Southern Championship, held on the spacious grounds of the Hell Creek Wildlife Management Area near New Albany and Blue Mountain, Miss. We were fortunate to get the trial in with all of the shutdowns beginning t and Blue Moon taino take place due to Covid-19.

We had professionals Randy Anderson, Weldon Bennett, Larry Huffman, Steve Hurdle, and Gary Lester along with local amateur Burke Hendrix.

Each handler gave the judges some very good performances to sort through in the one -hour qualifying series.

In the end, six dogs were named for the callbacks, with two others placed on standby.

Callback and standby dogs: Stash The Cash (Gary Lester); Miller’s Justified (Randy Anderson). Valiant (Anderson); Lester’s Shockwave (Lester); Lester’s Storm Surge (Lester); Hendrix’s Touch Up (Burke Hendrix); Touch’s Blackout (Anderson): Coldwater Spectre (Weldon Bennett).


The first brace. Stash The Cash and Valiant were released at 8:00 am. It didn’t take long for the action to start with Anderson calling point for Valiant at 7 with Cash backing. After release both dogs were standing again 100 yards to the front, a divided find. Point was called for Valiant at 13 with Cash backing. Both dogs made their way around the bean field edge and crossed the road into the pines.

Lester called point at the end of the pines for Cash at 27. We didn’t see Valiant as we made our way into the big bottom. Cash made a good cast along Hell Creek and faded out of sight. At the end of the big bottom Valiant was found on his fourth find at 36. Both dogs made good casts in the next field and at 43 Cash was standing on the left with his third find.

Both dogs were seen to the front as we crossed the gravel road. Cash had his fourth find at 55 on a pine strip. Point was called for Valiant at 1:03 and seconds later for Cash 100 yards down the same strip. Anderson fired as Lester was flushing for Cash, which ended up being an unproductive. Cash had his fifth find at 1:12, with Valiant backing. As we passed the brick house both dogs were fading out of sight.

Coming into the big bottom Anderson was looking for Valiant. Judge Bolden spotted Valiant pointed on the east side of ditch, a nice limb find. After released,Valiant went left in field cut and was found pointed at time for number seven. Cash finished in the big bottom.

Both Lester’s Storm Surge Hendrix‘s Touch Up made big casts off the breakaway. Storm Surge was found pointing at 8 before we entered the pines while Touch Up was making a huge cast along Hell Creek. After crossing Hell Creek we didn’t see Storm Surge. Touch Up was taking full advantage of the big country, making nice casts.

After crossing Jenny Branch, Storm Surge was standing far to the front, with Touch Up backing. At 36 Touch Up had his first find with Storm Surge backing. Both dogs were to the front making very nice casts on the way to the steel bridge.

After crossing Hell Creek for the second time, Storm Surge had his third find at 1:02, Touch Up again backing. Touch Up had his second find far to the front at 1:07, Storm Surge backing this work. After crossing the blacktop road, both dogs were seen making big casts. At 1:15 Touch Up had No. 3 and notched No. 4 at 1:18 before crossing the gravel road into the pines. Both dogs were seen far to the front in the pines. Hendrix called point for Touch Up at the end of the pines as time expired, with Storm Surge backing.

Touch’s Blackout (Anderson) and Coldwater Spectre (Bennett) were loosed at 1:00 p.m. The temperature had warmed up quite a bit after lunch and bird work seemed to shut down. Blackout scored two finds and Spectre had one. Both dogs were picked up around the one-hour mark.

Blue Mountain, Miss., March 14

Judges: Daniel Bolden and Jeremy Taylor

SOUTHERN CHAMPIONSHIP [One-Hour Qualifying Heats; Ninety-Minute Finals] — 22 Pointers and 2 Setters

Winner—VALIANT, 1649524, pointer male, by Miller’s Happy Jack—Tina’s Tear Dop. Jay McKenzie, owner; Randy Anderson, handler.

Runner-Up—HENDRIX’S TOUCH UP, 1681400, pointer male, by Pleasant Run Bob—House’s Wild Bess Again. Burke & Guy Hendrix, owners; Burke Hendrix, handler.

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