Tight turns on the drive gave Chris Toner’s Tami the edge over the field at Bute.

The Blackface hoggs behaved well, if handled reasonably on the big field, but soft, wet ground and strong winds blowing commands into the ether made the going hard for dogs, particularly on the uphill cross drive.

Tami (BK Renwick’s Nip, C Toner’s Graham’s Sam) worked well outbye, had minor wavers on the fetch and drive, but made neat turns and finished the winning run with a good chute and shed.

Stuart Davidson’s Lee (C Davidson’s Cap, SL Davidson’s Gillieglen Queen) too, performed well outbye, but had to work hard on her lines and turns, especially on the cross drive and took second place.

Good work achieved outbye and on the course at Abington ensured that Joe McRobert and Bill earned first place, despite failing to complete their run before time ran out.

Dogs struggled to hear commands over the wind, but the Blackface hoggs ran well on a big uphill course and penned well, only proving hard to break up at the shed.

Joe McRobert’s Bill (DJ Irvine’s Bob, D MacAuley’s Nan) worked very well outbye, kept good lines on the course and penned well. Although time ran out before Bill had shed, he earned first place, ahead of two dogs with runs similar and matching points.

Bobby Henderson’s Lad (J Hill’s Ban, P Holberg’s Tess) and Sion Morgan’s Tess (A Wilkie’s Nell, E Nilsson’s Frej) came tight on to their sheep, which affected the lift and fetch, but after that they worked well on the drive and at hand. With a better line on the fetch, Lad took second place, and Tess third.

The fit Cheviot hoggs at Humbie were released from a knowe which helped their visibility on an otherwise flat course. They were unforgiving of dogs that put them under pressure, tending to take off after the turn round the hander, and they did not enjoy the close work.

Bobby Dalziel’s Mack (I Fourney’s Spot, C Le Guelle’s Jeda) kept his distance, handled the sheep well outbye, and although the hoggs tried to take off on the first leg of the drive, he put them through their gates and round the drive. The pen was good, but the shed was difficult and Mack had to work to keep the rejected pair from rejoining once the split had been made, but solid work already achieved gave him the lead, with a very comfortable margin.

Cameron Dickson’s Stuart (SL Davidson’s Gillieglen Queen, C Davidson’s Cap) too, started out well, but although the hoggs seemed to be on line, they slipped by both drive gates, with a wide turn round the first. Stuart penned after minor breaks and a good, quick shed completed the run in second place.

At Evanton, Geordie Simpson maintained his domination over the top place in his league, with Lad doing the running this week, but Ian Wilkie’s Vic encroached into second place with a run similar to Lad’s, but falling just a little short, due to a wide turn.

The course was set on a plain, but the ground rolled up and down, and a hollow in the middle put the dogs into a blind spot on their outrun with the sheep out of their sight. The Blackface hoggs needed to be pushed round the course, but they could bolt at other times, and they were difficult to shed.

Lad (DW Davies’ Prince, H Hughes’ Nan) ran out and lifted cleanly, but the hoggs wavered off line on the fetch. The drive went well, until the hoggs missed the cross drive gate. A clean pen and a good shed set the seal on the winning run.

Vic (R Hutchinson’s Sweep, I Wilkie’s Floss) too, started off with a clean outrun and lift, and the line of the fetch bent before the hoggs went through the gate. The drive was very good, until the hoggs missed the cross drive gate and made a wide turn toward the pen. Clean work at hand completed the run in second place.

The sheep at Boreland of Anwoth were tricky in some places, on a course which fell away from the handler. There were no fetch gates, a chute replaced the pen and the young dogs managed them well.

Billy Common’s Cowlow Rosie (GRN Saxon’s Cammen Rip, I Hulme’s Cowlow Fan) ran out well, but went off line on her fetch. Although she missed her first drive gates, she recovered well on the rest of the drive. The pen went well, and although Rosie was a little hesitant to shed, she finished in first place.

Novice, Murray Common’s Queen (DK Evans’ Flock, C Harding’s Fly) got off to a good start, the best of the day, with only wavers of the line against her. Queen had a little difficulty before she penned successfully, but finished on a good shed, first place in the novice section and the highest score of the day.

LEADING awards

Evanton (Judge: H Munro, Inverness) Nursery – 20 ran – 1, G Simpson’s Lad, Forgue, 89; 2, I Wilkie’s Vic, Keithhall, 87; 3, G Simpson’s Kim, Forgue, 85 Outbye; 4, G Simpson’s Gelert, Forgue, 85; 5, I Wilkie’s Pip, Keithhall, 80; 6, I MacDonald’s Jim, Staffin, 78; 7, H Johnstone’s Kyle, Fyvie, 78; 8, G Simpson’s Celt, Forgue, 77; 9, J McKenzie’s Meg, Turriff, 77; 10, H MacLean’s Moss, Culloden, 75.

Bute (Judge: R Middleton, Fairlie) Nursery – 17 ran – 1, C Toner’s Tami, Drimsynie, 87; 2, SL Davidson’s Lee, Sandbank, 86; 3, N McVicar’s Bill, Benmore, 84; 4, N Docherty’s Spot, Bute, 80; 5, I Lockhart’s Joe, Carsphairn, 79; 6, L Gast’s Ben, Scalpsie, 73; 7, C Cropper’s Rhydale Paddy, Drimsynie, 69; 8, D Campbell’s Jill, Strachur, 54.

Humbie (Judge: IM Brownlie, Deuchrie) Nursery – 15 ran – 1, R Dalziel’s Mack, Ettrick, 84; 2, C Dickson’s Stuart, Coldingham, 71; 3, M Arres’ Moss, Ashkirk, 67; 4, D Gilchrist’s Ted, Oxton, 66; 5, A Dickman’s Jaff, Oxton, 60; 6, S Blaikie’s Jeff, Cranshaws, 56; 7, J Robinson’s Templehall Jack, Coldingham, 55; 8, J Foster’s Ted, Earlston, 52; Novice – 1, S Blaikie’s Jeff, Cranshaws, 56.

Abington (Judge: D Wallace, Blyth Bridge) Nursery – 22 ran – 1, J McRobert’s Bill, Tweedsmuir, 83; 2, RB Henderson’s Lad, Heriot, 82 Outbye; 3, S Morgan’s Tess, West Linton, 82; 4, R Henderson’s Bill, Crawford,79; 5, S Morgan’s Merv, West Linton, 77; 6, GC Gardner’s Nan, Lesmahagow, 74; 7, D Smith’s Ross, Lanark, 70 Outbye; 8, I Fleming’s Jill, Douglas,70; 9, K Blackwood’s Mist, Abington, 66; 10, A Aitchison’s Bob, Mossdale, 58. Novice -1, R Reid’s Snip, Carnwath, 70; 2, K Blackwood’s Jill, Abington, 69; 3, K Blackwood’s Mist, Abington, 66; 4, K Aitchison’s Beth, Mossdale, 61.

Boreland of Anwoth (Judge: C Caygill, Whinnyliggate) Nursery – 13 ran – 1, JW Common’s Cowlow Rosie, Lockerbie, 67; 2, D Robertson’s Moss, Langholm, 65 Outbye; 3, N MacDonald’s Cap, Shawhead, 65; 4, M Wilson’s Jill, Corsock, 63; 5, R Malcolm’s Mac, Gatehouse, 59; 6, JW Common’s Jaff, Lockerbie, 56; 7, M Forster’s Meg, Irongray, 47. Novice – 1, JM Common’s Queen, Lockerbie, 73; 2, JM Common’s Grit, Lockerbie, 49. Pro Novice – 1, D McMillan’s Glen, Carsphairn, 51.