A high standard of work, with only minor points dropped over the whole piece gave Andrew Hughson’s Fay a comfortable lead over the field at Gruline on the Isle of Mull.

Fay (S Garvie’s Roy & Jess) ran out and lifted her sheep with no trouble. The line of the fetch wavered slightly before the gate, but the gimmers came in on a good line. Although the turn was a little wide, once they were on the drive, the work was almost perfect.

Stuart Davidson’s Hope (C Davidson’s Cap, T Grove’s Phil) was tight on his outrun, which impacted on his lift, but once he had the gimmers moving on the course, Hope took the sheep round in a very composed manner and was placed second.

Two similar and ‘natural’ runs from Davie Wallace’s Boy and Colin Armstrong’s Malta Scott showed that were up to the task of reading the sheep and controlling them well.

Gimmers of the Aberfield, ‘designer’ breed tested the dogs in the morning. Although they improved on their second time round the course, they challenged the dogs, weaving from side to side, and inclined to take off as they turned round the handler.

Boy (R Henderson’s Glen, D Wallace’s Jen) ran out, lifted and fetched flawlessly, and, while most turns were very wide, Boy’s was comparatively neat. The drive went well and a successful pen and shed completed the winning run.

Malta Scott (C Thom’s Blue and Malta Gael) too, worked cleanly outbye, and although his turn round Colin was wider than Boy’s, a good pen and shed set the seal on another successful run.

Credit was accorded by the judge to Paul Howe’s unregistered Pip (K Ireland’s Jake & Gyp), who earned third place.

A run off between two good runs, that stood head and shoulders in front of the field, decided the winner at New Cumnock.

The Blackface ewes were light to handle, liked to have their own way on the big, gently rising course and were not keen to turn round the handler.

Stuart Davidson’s Gillieglen Queen (SL Davidson’s Rob, A Gilles’ Peg) ran out and lifted very well. A clean pen and a good shed followed and Queen was on her way to winning the trial.

Similarly, Stuart McCrindle’s Zack (JL MacMillan’s Lamp and Fern) started out very well, and although he made a good job of turning the sheep round Stuart, the line of the drive away wavered and the sheep split at the first gate; two slipped by and it took a wide turn to get the packet on to the cross drive. The work went well from there and a clean pen and a good shed placed Zack second.

Bobby Henderson’s Skid (RB Henderson’s Bill, D Wallace’s Meg) worked very well outbye but, although the ewes seemed to be on a good line, they slipped by the gate. The cross drive was better and a clean shed completed the run with a comfortable lead.

Again, Paul Turnbull’s Mick (S McLay’s Craig and Linburn Nell) started very well outbye and continued that standard on to the drive, but the pen was a different matter. The sheep ran round the pen, but once Mick had them secured, the run took second place.

At Knockgerran, two litter brothers worked well for their breeders on both sides, Fraser Shennan’s Mia taking first place, two points ahead of Jock Welsh’s Cree (JR Welsh’s Tanhill Nap, FW Shennan’s Fizz).

The mule gimmers behaved well on the big brae face, but the rough terrain of rushes and waterlogged patches created natural obstacles for dogs and sheep. Dogs lost sight of the sheep on their way out.

Mia worked well on the course, and although an unconvincing shed had to be retaken, the run earned first place.

Cree needed two whistles to find his sheep, and when the gimmers drifted on the first half of the fetch, Jock decided to let them. They stayed calm, went through the gates and continued nicely round the course. A good pen and shed finished the work in second place.

LEADING awards

Gruline, Mull (Judge: J Ogston, Killin). Open – 30 ran – 1, AJ Hughson’s Faye, Brunthamarsland, 96; 2, SL Davidson’s Hope, Sandbank, 90; 3, K Strachan’s Roy, Roybridge, 86; 4, SL Davidson’s Gillieglen Queen, Sandbank, 81; 5, M MacNally’s Finn, Invergarry, 80; 6, B Strachan’s Sam, Roybridge, 76; two-dog aggregate – SL Davidson’s Hope and Gillieglen Queen, Sandbank. Local – 1, J Shanks’ May, Ardtornish, 68; 2, J Moore’s Bob, Gruline, 66; E Moore’s Meg, Gruline, 57; local two-dog aggregate – E Moore’s Meg and Cap, Gruline. Shepherd – K Strachan’s Roy, Roybridge.

Teviothead (Judge: S Anderson, Waterbeck). Open – 70 ran – 1, D Wallace’s Boy, Blythbank, 95; 2, C Armstrong’s Malta Scott, Archbank, 93; 3, P Howe’s Pip, Hawick, 87; 4, C Dickson’s Straid Star, Coldingham, 86; 5, D Wallace’s Bill, Blythbank, 85 outbye; 6, J L’Etang’s Slip, Slamannan, 85; 7, J Hill’s, Sid, Heriot, 84; 8, A Stewart’s Tweed, Lockerbie, 83.

Colmonel and Ballantrae, Kilwhannel (Judge: R Armour, Cumnock). Open – 60 ran – 1, N Gillon’s Shweep, Dailly, 92; 2, T Welsh’s Don, Patna, 89; 3, I McMillan’s Lamp, Newton Stewart, 84; 4, F Shennan’s Spot, Barr, 83; 5, F Shennan’s Mia, Barr, 80; 6, R Middleton’s Will, Neilston, 70.

Westruther (Judge: D Wallace, Blyth Bridge). Open – 30 ran – 1, RB Henderson’s Skid, Heriot, 86; 2, P Turnbull’s Mick, Debdon, 79; 3, P Howe’s Pip, Hawick, 75 outbye; 4, JB Foster’s Tay, Earlston,75; 5, J Hill’s, Sid, Heriot, 68; 6, A Sim’s Bree, Powmill, 67. Novice – J L’Etang’s Slip, Slamannan.

New Cumnock (Judge: R Howatson, Fairlie). Open – 35 ran – 1, SL Davidson’s Gillieglen Queen, Sandbank, 84 Run off; 2, S McCrindle’s Zak, Palnackie, 84; 3, I Lockhart’s Don, Carsphairn, 74; 4, T Welsh’s Don, Patna,71; 5, A McCulloch’s Risp, Dalmellington, 70; 6, T Blacklock’s Ben, Kirkconnell, 69; 7, J Henderson’s Vic, Fairlie, 66; 8, GC Gardner’s Meg, Lesmahagow, 64. Confined – T Blacklock’s Cap, Kirkconnell, 55.

Knockgerran (Judge: N Mc Vicar, Benmore). Open – 55 ran – 1, F Shennan’s Mia, Barr, 85; 2, JR Welsh’s Cree, Dalrymple, 83; 3, J Hastie’s Lethans Bear, Saline, 81; 4, F Shennan’s Spot, Barr, 77; 5, A McCulloch’s Risp, Dalmellington, 76; 6, R Middleton’s Will, Neilston, 70.

North Circuit – Kincraig I (Judge: M Murray, Back). Open – 73 ran – 1, M Davidson’s Corrie, Lilburn, 90; 2, D Henderson’s Star, Allendale, 87; 3, L Conn’s Olly, Limavady, 87 outbye; 4, L Conn’s Ben, Limavady, 87 outbye; 5, S Conn’s Harry, Limavady, 87; 6, H MacLean’s Dan, Culloden, 87; 7, I Wilkie’s Floss Keithhall, 86 outbye; 8, A McCulloch’s Risp, Dalmellington, 86.

Kincraig II (Judge:JR Welsh, Dalrymple). Open – 55 ran –1, W Morrison’s Tanhill Will, Yell, 93; 2, D Henderson’s Burndale Brad, Allendale, 89 outbye; 3, B Smith’s Joe, Oxford, 89; 4, M Davidson’s Groesfaen Taff, Lilburn, 88; 5, K Brehmer’s Cynfal Gwen, New Bythe, 86; 6, J Ramsay’s Jim, Ollaberry, 83.

Kingussie, Kincraig (Judge: H Munro, Inverness). Open – ran – 1, K Donald’s Choc, Dalrymple, 96; 2, L Conn’s Ben, Limavady, 95; 3, P Martin’s Jen, Glenlyon, 94; 4, S Conn’s Harry, Limavady, 93 outbye; 5, I Wilkie’s Floss Keithhall, 93 Outbye; 6, AJ Hughson’s Faye, Brunthamarsland, 93; 7, B Smith’s Joe, Oxford, 93; 8, D Henderson’s Star, Allendale, 91 outbye.

Watten (Judge: J Ramsay, Ollaberry). Open – 40 ran – 1, MC Shearer’s Tib, Westfield, 85; 2, MC Shearer’s Roy, Westfield,75; 3, P Martin’s Jen, Glenlyon, 74; 4, H Johnstone’s Fellgate Bella, Fyvie, 73 outbye; 5, H Johnstone’s Queen, Fyvie,73; 6, MC Shearer’s Jim, Westfield, 72. County – 1, MC Shearer’s Tib, Westfield, 85; 2, MC Shearer’s Roy, Westfield,75; 3, MC Shearer’s Jim, Westfield, 72; 4, M Grant’s Fred, Forss, 63; 5, D Simpson’s Baxter, Barrock, 60; 6, M Grant’s Fred, Forss, 50.

Mey (Judge: M Murray, Back). Open – 69 ran – 1, MC Shearer’s Jim, Westfield, 92 outbye; 2, MC Shearer’s Roy, Westfield, 92; 3, P Martin’s Jen, Glenlyon, 88; 4, MC Shearer’s Tib, Westfield, 85 outbye; 5, M Davidson’s Groesfaen Taff, Lilburn, 85; 6, L Conn’s Ben, Limavady, 84. County – 1, MC Shearer’s Jim, Westfield, 92 outbye; 2, MC Shearer’s Roy, Westfield, 92; 3, MC Shearer’s Tib, Westfield, 85; 4, M Sutherland’s Glen, Lybster, 60; 5, M Grant’s Fred, Forss, 51; 6, J Grant’s Kate, Dunbeath, 46.

Brora (Judge: D Mullan, Kinross). Open – 56 ran – 1, M Grant’s Fred, Forss, 86; 2, M Davidson’s Groesfaen Taff, Lilburn, 85; 3, S Conn’s Harry, Limavady, 84; 4, L Conn’s Gem, Limavady, 83; 5, P Martin’s Jill, Glenlyon, 81; 6, EC MacKinnon’s Buddy, Lochcarron, 80; 7, EC MacKinnon’s Midge, Lochcarron, 79; 8, M Davidson’s Corrie, Lilburn, 76 outbye; 9, S Campbell’s Belle, Skye, 76; 10, J McKenzie’s Tweedie, Turriff, 75. Confined – 1, I Sutherland’s Jimmy, Strathnaver, 71; 2, N Sutherland’s High Ash Hill, Strathnaver, 62; 3, J Sutherland’s Upland Jan, Durness, 60.