We started the test with 20 dogs competing and everybody went through the first two exercises well.  The dogs handled the heeling and recall with exceptional skill and all passed this part of the test, with the exception of one dog on the recall.  (Sorry about that Marg!)

We then went on to the retrieving exercises.  My runs consisted of a single mark on land and the dummy was landing approximately 40 metres away onto a cleared area.  The terrain was the tricky part of the run, the dogs had to traverse a small ditch with a bit of water in it and then work through some heavy grass cover to get to the area of the fall of the dummy.  These natural hazards caused a few of the dogs to go off line and some of them to lose the line of the mark and the depth of the retrieve.

On the whole the dogs handled this retrieve well, with only four dogs failing the retrieve.  Top scores on this exercise were dog number 17 with 30 points and dog numbers 3, 4, 6 and 14 on 27 points.

The second run was a single mark retrieve from in the water.  The dummy was cast from behind a large bank of reeds, it was high cast and there was a very good splash on landing in the water.  The run was about 50 metres.  Two handlers withdrew their dogs from this retrieve.  A lot of dogs were very hesitant about entering the water, but those who persevered and went in did a good job of the retrieve.  The top dogs on this run were numbers 6, 12, 13 and, 17, on 34 points.  These dogs did the run perfectly with a straight line in and out with no hesitation at the water.  Six dogs failed this retrieve.

Out of the 20 dogs competing, six received passes.  The top dogs were:

  1. No 17  FT CH WALGEERS OSCAR (Springer Spaniel) R Watt 98 points. This dog did very little wrong as is indicated by the score on the day.  Top work Rod.
  2. No 13  WINTERSET BROKEN ARROW (Golden Retriever) H Pownall 89 points.
  3. No 4 DUAL CH (T) EVERWEIS PARK XQUIZID CD TSD ET (Weimaraner) B & L Evertsen 87 points.

Many thanks to my stewards on the day, Norma, Steve and John on the thrower, Dodo, assembly steward, and Peter for helping out with equipment and setting up throwers.

Other passes on the day were:
K Gray and SPEZIA IM THE ONE (German Shorthaired pointer) 86 points
Weilander Kennels and WEILANDER SHIFTING SANDS, (Weimaraner Longhair) 86 points
W Mossop and T CH GOLDNYMPH OBERON (Golden Retriever) 85 points

K Gray and SPEZIA IM THE ONE were also awarded a rosette donated by Dodo Kelly for the highest scoring gundog competing in RATG and GRCV obedience.

H Pownall and WINTERSET BROKEN ARROW were awarded the sash for the Highest Scoring Golden Retriever.

This was the GRCV’s first RATG Test.  With 23 entries (2 scratchings) we were really rushed to get finished by 12.30pm for lunch, so next time we will know to start earlier.  The weather was kind to us, perfect for the RATG test.  It was great to see quite a few onlookers from the obedience.  Hopefully they will put their hands up when the next RATG test is run.  They could see how keen and how much the dogs enjoyed the retrieving part of the test.

Thanks to our judge Margaret Hall.  This was also her first RATG judging appointment.  I think we will see her at a few more of these tests.


RATG Novice placegetters with Judge Margaret Hall.

Third place DUAL CH (T) EVERWEIS PARK XQUIZID CD TSD ET (Weimaraner) B & L Evertsen,

First place FT CH WALGEERS OSCAR (Springer Spaniel) R Watt and

Second place WINTERSET BROKEN ARROW (Golden Retriever) H Pownall