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By Sine Robertson

A quick and positive fetch on rough terrain gave Fraser Shennan’s Mia a clear lead at Stranraer.

Dogs had to be alert to handle the Blackface gimmers and although the sheep settled with use and the winning runs tended to benefit from that, they were still difficult to pen. The course was set in a big bowl shaped hollow in a good, big field, and although the rashes had been cut for the trial, the gimmers were not keen to be fetched through them.

Mia (JR Welsh’s Tanhill Nap, FW Shennan’s Fizz) ran out slightly short and lifted offline, but once the gimmers were on line, they realised that Mia had them under control and the fetch went very well from there. From the time Mia turned the sheep round Fraser’s feet, she let nothing go wrong. A clean drive, one of only two achieved on the day, followed and a clean pen and shed completed the winning run.

Stuart McCrindle’s Kate (S McCrindle’s Bill, M MacIlwraith’s Tanhill Nell) ran out and lifted cleanly and had another good fetch, if slower than Mia’s. The drive was good and Kate stopped an attempted break round the side of the pen before it developed, and penned her packet successfully. The first attempt to shed did not come off, but when the split was made, Kate earned second place, ahead of third on the merit of her outbye work.

Ian McMillan’s Lamp (R Dalziel’s Joe, S McCrindle’s Kass), like Mia, was a little short on her outrun and she too lifted to one side. Although she got her fetch gate, the gimmers twisted through the rashes on the fetch, spoiling the line, but a very good drive and clean work at hand finished the run in third place, level on points with second.

Good work outbye gave John Hastie’s Lethan’s Bear the lead at Aberfeldy.

The Texel cross gimmers were difficult to control on the steeply sloping course, particularly on the drive and at the pen. On the outrun, dogs were out of sight at the top and handlers had to watch to see whether they appeared in the correct position behind their sheep.

Bear (John Hastie’s Cap and Rosie) worked almost flawlessly outbye and had a very good drive until the line wobbled from the cross drive gate on the return to the pen. Bear penned, with some work, and finished the winning run with a clean shed.

Alan Wilkie’s Spot (GE Lightfoot’s Cap, E Williams’ Bet) was slightly short on his outrun and lifted off line, but once he settled the sheep on line, the fetch went well and the drive was very good. A good pen followed, and although the gimmers were unsettled on the shed, once the division was made, Spot took second place, a point behind Bear.

A steady, well controlled run, with no holes in it, put Peter Martin’s Jill well ahead of the field at Braco.

The cross Texel gimmers ran well on the big, flat course, but were difficult to handle at the pen and shed, tending to break under pressure.

Peter and Jill (R Dalziel’s Joe, N McVicar’s Nikki) took good care of a good packet of sheep, ensuring that they were not upset as they were navigated round the course. They profited, with only minor points dropped here and there and earned first place with a long lead.

Mike Watt and Dale (M Watt’s Bob and Lyn) had some difficulties on the course, but a very good pen and shed secured second place, with the rest of the prize list hot on their heels.

LEADING awards

Braco (Judge: SL Davidson, Dunoon) Open – 58 ran –1, P Martin’s Jill, Glenlyon, 93; 2, M Watt’s Dale, Kirriemuir, 87; 3, M Magnusson’s Murphy, Mid Derry, 86 Outbye; 4, L Magnusson’s Kate, Mid Derry, 86 Outbye; 5, N Dalgarno’s Roy, Devon, 86 Outbye; 6, E Nilsson’s Frej, Meigle, 86; Local – 1, H Mitchell’s Kate, Lochearnhead, 77; 2, AD Carnegie’s Jess, Comrie,75; 3, D Galbraith’s Craig, Comrie, 71; 4, H Mitchell’s Ben, Lochearnhead, 61;

Stranraer (Judge: W Anderson, Castle Kennedy) Open – 32 ran – 1, F Shennan’s Mia, Barr, 93; 2, S McCrindle’s Kate, Palnackie, 90 Outbye; 3, I McMillan’s Lamp, Newton Stewart, 90; 4, N Gillon’s Shweep, Dailly, 87; 5, A Pugh’s Lad, Wales, 82; 6, S McCrindle’s Zak, Palnackie, 80;

Aberfeldy (Judge: JR Welsh, Dalrymple) – Open – 55 ran - 1, J Hastie’s Lethans Bear, Saline, 91; 2, A Wilkie’s Spot, Lintrathen, 90; 3, AD Carnegie’s Linburn Rook, Comrie, 89; 4, N Dalgarno’s Pip, Devon, 88; 5, IM Brownlie’s Boredale Gus, Bridge of Cally, 85 Outbye; 6, E Nilsson’s Frej, Meigle, 85; 7, L Lierr’s Coy, Sweden, 84; 8, SL Davidson’s Gillieglen Queen, Sandbank, 83;

Coltcrooks (Judge: M Longton, Quernmore) Open – 46 ran – 1, A Temple’s Floss, Holmrook, 82; 2, K Cropper’s Zac, Shap, 79; 3, D Robertson’s Joe, Langholm, 77 Outbye; 4, A Stewart’s Tweed, Lockerbie,77 Outbye; 5, D Robertson’s Sarnfaen Mott, Langholm,77; 6, J Foster’s Tay, Earlston, 66;

Fetlar, Shetland (Judge: J Thomason, Fetlar) – Open - 27 ran – 1, W Morrison’s Tanhill Will, Yell, 89 /100; 2, J Ramsay’s Drift, Ollaberry, 87; 3, J Ramsay’s Tam, Ollaberry, 84; 4, S Fraser’s Nell, Cullswick, 82; 5, C Williamson’s Joe, Ollaberry, 81Outbye; 6, G Clark’s Jock, Burravoe, 81; Championship – 1, G Clark’s Jock, Burravoe, 99 /110; 2, J Ramsay’s Drift, Ollaberry, 92 Outbye; 3, S Fraser’s Nell, Cullswick, 92; 4, W Morrison’s Tanhill Will, Yell, 86; 5, C Williamson’s Joe, Ollaberry, 59; Brace – 1, J Nicolson’s Meg & Riley, Scalloway, 61 /120; 2, A Nicolson’s Sweep & May, Ollaberry, 42; Limit - 1, J Ramsay’s Tweed, Ollaberry, 49/60; 2, A Nicolson’s Sweep, Ollaberry, 44; 3, C Williamson’s Dean, Ollaberry, 43;