American Field

Field Trial Report

Venango Grouse Trial Club

By Joe Cammisa | Feb 17, 2021

Marienville, Pa. — The Venango Grouse Trial Club early on announced a quality group of outstanding outdoorsmen who would sit in the judicial saddles for the fall trial. Dave Duell of Sheffield, Pa., and Jeremy Estep of Troy Pa., oversaw the Open All-Age; Al Fazenbaker of Kingsville, Ohio and Eric Munden of Phillipsburg, Pa., sat in judgment of the Derbies;  Steve and Ginny Chiappini, both of Butler, Pa., looked over the prospective puppies.

The drawing was held at the secretary’s home, where first, 23 all-age dogs running in the Rich Tuttle Memorial Grouse Dog Classic were drawn to start the weekend on Friday the Thirteenth, unlucky for some and lucky for a select few.

The trial took place in the Allegheny National Forest in Marienville, Pa. The Open Puppy was running at Dr. Tim Perschke’s farm on a newly developed course and our thanks go out to him for extending it to the Venango Club.


In the Rich Tuttle Classic, Grouse Hill Smokey, a strapping pointer male owned by John Capocci of Katonah, N.Y.,  and handled by Marc Forman went out on the infamous M and M course and pinned his quarry just before the halfway turn at the bottom of the M. Smokey sealed the deal with a nice ground race, ever forward on the tricky switchback terrain dotted with thick blueberries and an unforgiving swamp.

The runner-up was La Sombra with a forward, fancy and determined race. "Trico" applied himself well deserving a callback clinching his position in the red ribbon slot.

The Open Derby winner was Young Grouse Louie, setter male handled by Marc Forman and owned by Joseph Milone of Port Chester, N.Y. Louie was described as fast paced with nice application. He was forward and fancy, hitting all the right places and showing “all the right stuff”. Garnering the blue was inevitable.

Dr. Jim Stiteler of Dubois, Pa., owner of Pleasant Valley Gus, handled Gus to the red and showed off all his well-built pointer's stamina and grace. Gus is well put together and is one of the up-and-coming pointers to keep an eye on.

The Chiappinis spent Saturday morning looking at puppies, deciding that German shorthaired pointer COVID owned and handled by Adam Elms of Russell, Pa., was the first-place winner. Adam is new to trialing and the trap has been set . . .

Special thanks to Norm Meeder, Tim Perschke, Steve Chiappini and Dave Hughes for managing the road, moving vehicles, and performing the many duties required to provide a quality and enjoyable trial.

The ever-popular R. B. Powell supplied the horses through the Nittany Valley Trail Ride Farm, handled by David Powell the entire weekend. Thank you, David, for your fine work and attention.

Special thanks go to Greg Blair and Nestle-Purina for their continued and outstanding support to this game we call grouse trialing. For without their support many dreams may not be realized.

Marienville, Pa., November 13

Judges: Dave Duell and Jeremy Estep


[One-Hour Heats] — 10 Pointers, 12 Setters and 1 Irish Setter

Winner—GROUSE HILL SMOKEY, 1683013, pointer male, by Silver Ko Kane Ty—Smoke’m Up Jill. John Capocci, owner; Marc Forman, handler.

Runner-Up—LA SOMBRA, 1648321, pointer male, by Jack Shadow—Covey Rise’s Abbie. Carlos Escalante, owner and handler.

Judges: Al Fazenbaker and Eric Munden

OPEN DERBY — 2 Pointers and 2 Setters

1st—YOUNG GROUSE LOUIE, 1685194, setter male, by Shady Hills Whiskey Bonfire—Grouse River Seneca Sue. Joseph J. Milone, owner; Marc  Forman, handler.

2d—PLEASANT VALLEY GUS, 1691289, pointer male, by Cheyenne Jack—Moondance River Pearl. Dr. James Stiteler, owner and handler.

Judges: Ginny Chiappini and Steve Chiappini

OPEN PUPPY — 2 Setters and 1 German Shorthair

1st—COVID, unreg., German Shorthair male, breeding not given. Adam Elms, owner and handler.


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