American Field

Willing Foursome Helped Film 2019 National Championship

By Brad Harter | Nov 27, 2019
Ryan Braddock

Athens, Ohio — The 32nd year of the DVD of the National Bird Dog Championship held at Grand Junction, Tenn., is just a few days away from being back from duplication and ready for shipment!

I am super excited about this most recent production for a number of reasons. I personally believe it to be the best one ever produced for a number of reasons which the following story will attempt to explain.

As many of you may be aware, in late November, 2018, I suffered a very serious accident when a limb from a large dead ash tree nearly killed me. Tina Romine and my wonderful family saved my life and began the long, challenging process of nursing me back to living.

By February, 2019, I was fortunate to be able to attend the 2019 running of the National at Ames. But I also knew there was absolutely no way that I was able to be on horse to videotape the action, as I had been able to do for the previous 31 years.

I really only had three choices. The first was to just skip making any effort to videotape the 2019 running, an option I did not want to take. The second option was to capture what could be captured from the roadside. As most field trialers know, that would be very limiting. The third option was to see if there was anyone who would be willing to ride every brace, carry a camera and stay on top of the action.

I had three persons in mind, but I had no idea if they would be willing to attempt this effort. Dr. Rick Carlisle and Ryan Braddock are the two head marshals and are up front on top of the action. Chris Weatherly, also a plantation employee, serves as the rear marshal and goes with any handler in the event that their dogs are found on point where we might have passed by them.

In years past Larry Garner has been carrying a second camera for me to cover a dog in that type of situation, but in 2019 Larry was also unable to attend.

When I brought up the option that either Rick, Ryan or Chris might consider carrying a camera, I was surprised when all three expressed a willingness to attempt to capture as much footage as possible. I arranged to have cameras for each of these three men and I gave them a crash course in using those cameras the day before the running commenced.

To be completely honest, I really did not expect that they would capture much footage that could be used, but their willingness to try was certainly appreciated. Boy, was I wrong! All three of my willing cameramen not only stepped up to the plate, but what they were able to capture on videotape was beyond anything I expected.

For the last 14 years I have been fortunate to have Ken Blackman willing and capable to run a roadside camera. That effort has made it possible to capture distant shots, footage which I believe have made the DVDs since 2006 much improved. Serving as cameraman number four, Ken was also able to do so in 2019.

In addition to these four cameras, I bought a new, small, handheld camera called the pocket Osmo. This camera was for me to use, even though I was hobbling around with the use of a cane. So in reality, for the first time ever, Pleasant Hill Productions had five cameras covering the action of the 2019 National Championship.

While this did present a real challenge when it came to editing and sorting through video footage, the end result is what I believe to be the very best National Championship DVD ever produced! I hope others will agree.


[Copies are available at $45 each (shipping included). To order, go to website: or call: (740) 591-6456.]

Comments (0)
If you wish to comment, please login.