30-08-2015 Rob Summerfield - The Dutch Obedience Society

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30-08-2015 Rob Summerfield

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Show Report
Show: Dogcenter Kerkwijk
Date: 30/08/2015
Class: Novice & Class A
Judge: Rob Summerfield

Sunday morning was shocking – humid and damp thanks to a passing thunderstorm. According to the rest of the gathering there had been a minor storm during the night, which just show that a) I was either completely shattered or b) it takes something exceptional to arouse me from my slumbers these days or c) both. However the skies cleared, leaving hazy sunshine and the feeling of being stuffed head first into a Turkish sauna. 
Decided to blow up caravan instead.
The temperature climbed rapidly, into the 30s by lunchtime and causing much stickiness, the dogs were damped down as much as possible with handlers taking advantage of the small dyke alongside the rings. Can’t officially say if any handlers took the plunge…..!!
Despite the heat and humidity the teams working in Novice and A gave a good account of themselves, the circle work was especially pleasing as handlers grabbed the chance to really stride out with their dogs; I was looking for strong balanced hw in both directions combined with the ability to focus on the more technical aspect of the conventional part of the pattern. Stays were indoors again and for the first time in ages I can report totally and utterly clear exercises, handlers could stand sideways on in the sit if they wished. Just proves there’s nothing wrong, eh? (that’s a joke by the way). The way things panned out we should campaign to get rid of scent….
Once again I must thank my ring party for making my job easy.

Class A
Ring steward – Karen Selhorst
Score – lovely chap, sorry not to make a note of your name!

1st Nicole Krolik with BETTY LOU VOM STREITWALD (Malinois)
There’s a limit to the number of “wows” one can put in a write up, so I’ll just put one big one. WOW!! Power, power, power. Drive, focus, engagement in abundance, just a tendency to come unstuck on the turns and a little crabbing on the straights to trouble the pencil. I think Betty did the sets, I may have blinked at the wrong time – speed and control, that’s what it’s about. This is a team with a very bright future indeed, would love to see them in the UK! Congratulations on this win and your Beginner and Novice wins on Saturday!
Lost 5.75 HW, 0.75 Scent Total 6.5

2nd Trudy Groenenboom with ABFAB SO CHEEKY (WS)
Trudy and Cheeky fairly hurtled round the circles with supreme confidence, a little inverting on the left and the opposite on the right but really negligible in all honesty. Hardly a paw out of place on the straights and just small errors in the sets, an EC to go out in scent preventing a run off for first today. Well done, she is “Ab Fab”!
Lost 4.5 HW, 1 Rec, 0.75 Ret, 2 Scent Total 8.5

A team I’ve had the pleasure of judging before, and I wasn’t disappointed this time either. Had a really good crack at the circles, Snickers just losing attention here and there which was repeated on some of the turns. A little untidy with the pick up on the recall and a rather poor finish on ret were unnecessarily expensive, but finished off with a very confident and keen scent. Well done!
Lost 6.25 HW, 1.5 Rec, 1 Ret, 0.25 Scent Total 9

4th Karl van den Bosch with INK OF MARANNS HOME (BC)
An excellent RH circle from Karl and handsome Ink, but wide work and some inattention on the straights. Overall much better hw today but the sets were on the untidy side and could do with a bit of polish. Once again the handling was quiet and composed, well done!
Lost 7.25 HW, 1.5 Rec, 1 Ret, 1 Scent Total 10.75

5th Brigitte van Gestel with NICE OF YOU TO COME BYE ROYAL PURPLE (BC)
One of my teams of the weekend and the first recipient of the Oh Gosh and Darn It Award. So much to admire here, beautiful circles demonstrating a lovely balanced position, just some very slight losses of position here and there through the hw. Stunning recall, a slightly untidy ret was the major blot – until scent. Sigh. Brigitte’s pretty little girl did a perfect scent, got distracted for some reason and dropped the cloth (the canine equivalent of standing with your mouth open and letting an ice cream fall from your hand) then went straight to heel, and that was that. Such a shame after a delightful round. Well done, she is a credit to you!
Lost 4.25 HW, 1 Ret, 6 Scent Total 11.25

6th Natalie Knaack-Enkelman with INDEPENDENT SPIRIT’S KENTUCKY (Malinois)
Another team with a serious WOW factor and receiving my second OGADI Award for exactly the same reason as Brigitte. Another team who made the circles look so easy, just the odd bit of crabbing on the RH circle and again on turns. Very little wrong with the sets which were properly fast and controlled. Anticipated in scent and then suffered the same “OMG what IS that?” moment, but being a Mali had to check out whatever it was but came back to present and finish as if nothing had happened! Another team which would draw a lot of interest in the UK, well done!
Lost 4.75 HW, 0.25 Rec, 0.75 Ret, 6 Scent Total 11.75

A team who caught my eye were Petra Mostert and BREEZY-THORN VALLEY HOCKEY – just getting their paws and feet wet in A and definitely have a bright future.
Onto Novice (hurrah!), HOL was a RH and LH circle, HF a little more demanding with diagonal work and long straights but straightforward enough. Once more I was treated to some fabulous circle work with the majority of the teams demonstrating consistent and balanced work with plenty of drive and enjoyment. Handlers were given the options of sideways/facing in stays and grabbed the opportunity to do so. Pro-active is so much better than Re-active, don’t you think? Many thanks to my final ring team, Anja (congrats on your place in C with Mr Pad Pad!) and Christine.

Ring steward – Anja de Pagter
Score – Christine Peska
21 entries, 18 ran

1st Natalie Knaack-Enkelman with INDEPENDENT SPIRIT’S KENTUCKY (Malinois)
Everything I wanted from the circles was presented to me by Natalie and Kentucky, completely in tune with each other, carrying the power and commitment combined with a high degree of accuracy into the HF. Piffling errors in the sets, just a double sit on the finish in ret the worst offence. Fabulous in every way and destined for the top. Congratulations!
Lost 2.25 HF, 0.25 Rec, 0.5 Ret Total 3

Another team who attacked the circles, just a loss of position on the about turn and a couple of drifts. HF threw up a few technical errors caused by Freez’s bouncy approach but there’s plenty in his little tank to tap into in the higher classes (as demonstrated on Saturday). Sets were very fast and accurate – overseas dogs seem to have special brakes as there was no sign of the crash and carnage on presents despite the speed shown by the majority of teams over the weekend! A highly satisfactory two days for Sandra and Freez, well done!
Lost 0.75 HOL, 3 HF, 0.25 Rec, 0.25 Ret Total 4.25

3rd Tim Enkelman with INDEPENDENT SPIRIT’S GRACE (Malinois)
These Malis are hell bent on world domination! Loved this team as well, same comments apply - high class circle work with all the attributes required, just the about turn was markable. HF was no less classy, the odd drift and loss of position on turns taking the points. As with the above teams the sets were absolute flyers with great control and again the handling was upright and clean. A rather splendid family day out I think, well done!
Lost 0.25 HOL, 3.5 HF, 0.25 Rec, 0.5 Ret Total 4.5

4th Petra Mostert with BREEZY-THORN VALLEY HOCKEY (Aust. Shep)
Glad you spotted the mistake, you and Breezy were really super today! Whereas the Malis were the Jeremy Clarksons, shouting “POWER!” and tearing up the grass with handbrake turns in their V12s, Breezy (and I can’t believe I’m saying this about an Aussie…) was a cheerful Stig, with delicate throttle control, dancing round the circles with deceptive ease reminiscent of a Caterham. Petra went off the LH circle a couple of times but the RH circle was just lovely. Lost position on some turns and a double sit at the end of HF, did the same on the present on ret. Overall a smashing round, well done!
Lost 2 HOL, 2.5 HF, 0.25 Rec, 0.75 Ret Total 5.5

A team with a lot of potential; at the moment Dazzle’s hw position is inconsistent but when he’s in the right place doing the right things he’s smashing. The LH circle was very nice, the RH element didn’t start too well with a lag but improved afterwards. HF was a mishmash of some elegant and stylish work mixed with a lack of commitment, so frustrating! Super recall but a dropped dumbbell was costly. Good luck with him Jose, well done!
Lost 2 HOL, 4.75 HF, 0.25 Rec, 1.5 Ret Total 8.5

6th Martine Verhoeven with SILENT DREAMS NAPAYSHNI (BC)
First proper competitive round for Martine’s youngster and he coped really well. A few little lags at the start of the RH circle, a couple of drifts and repositioning on the halt in HOL, the HF was a bit more of a struggle with wide turns and some lagging on straights. When he was going well he looked very smart and I’m sure Martine will build his confidence over the winter. Excellent sets, just a slight fumble on the retrieve. Well done!
Lost 2.25 HOL, 6.75 HF, 0.25 Rec, 0.5 Ret Total 9.75

So, that concluded the judging bit. After the presentations (such lovely judge’s presents – a beautiful lead and tuggy – Mr Rowdy say fanks! - and a little dog toy with the dinkiest tuggy keyring fob on his nose!) and a very welcome shower, we said cheerio to our friends who were departing for various destinations across Europe. Martin had ordered Chinese for our evening meal which was superb: we ate in the garden enjoying the warm evening and talking over the weekend’s events. My weather eye had been monitoring the skies since about 7pm and was all I had to go on – Vodafone being totally uncooperative in producing any radar images for Holland. Or northern France. Or Belgium. Sarah and I returned to our little home not long after 9pm, intending to have a bit of a tidy up and an early night. Was that a flash of lightning low on the horizon? Indeed it was. What followed was six hours of weather insanity; I thoroughly enjoyed it but my co-judge was heard muttering that she didn’t like it and it was scary and how were we supposed to sleep? The video I took on my phone is hysterically funny – “Would you like to be a tripod? Noooo…” (a rhetorical question, having asked Sarah earlier on. What does it entail, she enquired. Stick your head between your legs and kiss your **** goodbye, I replied); “My washbag is full of water!”; “Someone is throwing rocks at the caravan!” (large marble sized hail); “I can’t hear you!” “WHAT?????” “I SAID I CAN’T HEAR YOU!!!”; “It’s stopped raining….no it hasn’t….”; “WTF WAS THAT???” (in response to blinding orange flash and ground shaking thunder); “It’s much quieter out here!” (standing under collapsed awning). It was absolutely brilliant, even if we didn’t get to sleep until about 3am! Unfortunately Trudy found herself ankle deep in water at home – hope there wasn’t too much damage Trudy
On Monday morning Martin and Esther drove us to Schiphol, the roads were bone dry despite the hours of torrential rain although the fields were flooded in places (proving that the Dutch are world leaders in drainage management) and there was considerable damage to some glasshouses. Our journey was unremarkable and we were back in Norfolk just after lunch. Can’t say we were too thrilled to leave 25C and sunshine and return to 14C and heavy rain!
In conclusion I’d like to thank Martin and Esther for their hospitality and for welcoming us so warmly, making sure we had everything we needed, producing mountains of food at the drop of a hat (I am still suffering from a Dutch fries overload!), organising the weekend from start to finish, stewarding, grass cutting, and goodness knows what else! Also many thanks to their families for providing wonderful support over the two days, with lunches and ring side refreshments, to our ring parties and all the competitors for their entries. We had a truly fantastic time - I did four nights in a caravan and it’s still in one piece…
See you all again in 2016, we hope!
And if you’ve read this far, you may require some painkillers and a stiff drink.

That’s all folks!
Rob Summerfield
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