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Field Trial Report

Stillwater Open Trials

By Jon Humphrey | Nov 26, 2018
Open All-Age Winners. From front left: Randy Anderson with Valiant and Tiffany Genre with Touch’s Blackout. Behind: Jay McKenzie, Jon Humphrey, Ronnie Miller, Red Bailey, Peter Kainz, Mark Livingston and Raines Jordan.

Booneville, Ark. — Is change good? Benjamin Franklin is quoted as saying: “When you’re finished changing, you’re finished.”

Well, some things changed, and some things didn’t at the 2018 running of the Stillwater Open.

The top dog remained unchanged from last year: Touch’s Blackout! Blackout punched his ticket to the top of the podium with three stylish finds. He rimmed field edge after field edge jumping into cover only to nail his quarry.

The six-year-old white and orange  Blackout is owned by Richard Peterson of Gilbert, Ariz., and was handled by Randy Anderson.

Westfall’s River Ice drew a challenging competitor in the first brace of the stake. Ice’s bracemate was a young dog named Touch’s Spaceman. Spaceman and Ice were both hard charging, with Spaceman seeming to have a step or two on Ice. However, it was Ice delivering the veteran performance with clean finds at 12 and 43 to garner second. Spaceman was picked up for movement on his fourth find.

Coincidentally, Ice being in the winners’ circle was not a change either. Ice was in the money last year as well moving from third last year to second this year! The four-year-old white and black pointer male is owned by Brad H. Calkins, longtime patron from of Centennial, Colo., and was handled by Andy Daugherty.

The morning of the second day was cold and frosty — nothing moving.

Valiant and Westfall’s Black Ace were turned loose and after topping a couple of hills both dogs disappeared from sight. Jay McKenzie was on hand from Eureka, Kan., to watch Valiant but only heard the singing of the handlers as we rode through the crisp morning. At 18 both dogs were found quivering to the front with a covey pinned between them. Valiant went on to have a second find at 28 to claim the final placement in the trial.

The companion Derby drew a field of thirteen pointers. Randy Anderson handled the top two dogs — Fire Away and Miller’s Hot Rod — and Allen Vincent won third with Justifier.

So what changed?

The geography for one thing. We moved from Longton, Kan., to Booneville, Ark., which is approximately four and a half hours to the southeast from Longton.

With the geography change came the terrain change. The Longton ranch of the Flint Hills is a cattle ranch with a mixture of rocky hillsides and grassy valleys with a wild bird population. The Booneville venue is owned by the State of Arkansas as a demonstration area and cared for by a public/private partnership with pre-released birds. The terrain is marked by tall pines,  a reminder we are farther south.

As you may have anticipated by custom, we also changed judges. I want to thank both Mark Livingston and Ronnie Miller for agreeing to judge. By reputation they were both billed as men who can recognize a good dog, fair and capable. It was my experience that both of them were all of these things and their time in the saddle is appreciated.

And the date was moved from early October to early November. Although only thirty days, it is a significant change. Early October can bring intolerable heat in the Midwest for dogs and horses, making the change to November a pleasant one.

So what didn’t change?

One thing was support from Purina. Thank you Purina for your consistent support! We have also enjoyed continued support from area handlers and owners. Thank you for your continued support!

Anish Roy says: “Stability is more essential to success than brilliance.”

What say you? Change or stability?

For the 2018 Stillwater Open, it is a little of both.

Booneville, Ark., November 8

Judges: Mark Livingston and Ronnie Miller

OPEN DERBY — 13 Pointers

1st—FIRE AWAY, 1679602, male, by House’s Ring of Fire—Touch’s Maswood Anne. Mike Cour, owner; Randy Anderson, handler.

2d—MILLER’S HOT ROD, 1680644, male, by Miller’s Speed Dial—Jackson’s Silver Arrow. Raines Jordan, owner; Randy Anderson, handler.

3d—JUSTIFIER, 1678564, pointer male, by Whippoorwill Justified—Greypointe Inverna. Dr. Robert Rankin, owner; Allen Vincent, handler.

OPEN ALL-AGE [One-Hour Heats] — 18 Pointers

1st—TOUCH’S BLACKOUT, 1652345, male, by Touch’s White Out—B C Angelina. Ric Peterson, owner; Randy Anderson, handler.

2d—WESTFALL’S RIVER ICE, 1659989, male, by Westfall’s Black Ice—Westfall’s Quick Gold. Brad Calkins, owner; Andy Daugherty, handler.

3d—VALIANT, 1649524, male, by Miller’s Happy Jack—Tina’s Tear Drop. Jay McKenzie, owner; Randy Anderson, handler.

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