Ian Brownlie’s Lia was in top form at the weekend, taking first place at Ellemford and Dryden on consecutive days.

The Llyn ewes at Ellemford were generally manageable on the course, but the drive proved to be a bogey and some dogs missed their gates. The ewes did not like the pen, causing a number of unfinished runs.

A good pen and a tidy course set Lia (RJ Hutchinson’s Sweep, IM Brownlie’s Mo) apart from the other dogs and gave her a win with a long lead over the field.

The uphill course at Dryden was set up in National style, finishing with a shed, pen and single, but it was the long, left hand drive that tested some dogs.

Lia ran out and lifted faultlessly, had minor wavers on the fetch and drive and completed her winning run with clean work at hand.

David Henderson’s Star (R Dalziel’s Spot, D Henderson’s May) ran out cleanly, lifted well and had a clean fetch, although the line of the drive wavered a little. At the shed, Star split the sheep, then turned to look on the rejects, but David refocused Star on the target; the shed was completed and a clean pen and single finished the run in second place.

Near faultless outbye work, with only a single point lost to the start post, set Willie Welsh and Doug (B Smith’s Zac, A Blackmore’s Rosewood Class) up for success at Dalry. The drive went well, with just minor wavers and a clean pen and shed set the seal on the winning run.

Tom Blacklock’s Malta Ollie (T Kennedy’s Joe, C Thom’s Malta Pip) ran out well, lifted and fetched in a controlled manner and had a good drive with minor deviations from line. A clean pen and a good shed put Ollie into second place.

Big, strong cross Lleyn ewes at Lintrathen ran on a course that dropped before rising up the brae face, but they tested the dogs on the drive, where they were not afraid to face them up and on the drive where they showed the same strength of character.

Andy Carnegie’s Linburn Rook (M McTeir’s Bob, C Kirkland’s Groesfaen Jill) ran out and lifted well, but the drive was not so smooth and the ewes split at the cross drive gate, with two going through and two avoiding it after demonstrating their face off technique. Rook worked very hard to put them in the pen, and succeeded, and although time ran out before the shed came off, rook earned first place.

Leading awards

Dryden (Judge: P Turnbull, Debdon) Open – 43 ran - 1, IM Brownlie’s Lia, Deuchrie,106 /110; 2, D Henderson’s Star, Allendale,102; 3, H Brown’s Groesfaen Kadi, Coulter, 99; 4, J Hill’s Molly, Heriot, 98; 5, C Dickson’s Tom, Coldingham, 95; 6, H Brown’s Mac, Coulter, 92.

Dalry (Judge: N MacDonald, Shawhead) Open – 37 ran – 1, W Welsh’s Doug, Dalcairney, 96; 2, T Blacklock’s Malta Ollie, Kirkconnell, 92; 3, A McCulloch’s Risp, Dalmellington, 88; 4, GC Gardner’s Nan, Lesmahagow, 85; 5, W Welsh’s Cap, Dalcairney, 83 Outbye; 6,T Blacklock’s Holestone Del, Kirkconnell, 83; £825 raised for Freedom of Spirit Trust for Border Collies.

Durness (Judge: A Wright, Aboyne) Open – 51 ran – 1, P Martin’s Daisy, Glenlyon, 91; 2, J MacKillop's Zac, Fort Augustus, 80 Outbye; 3, I Sutherland’s Sid, Strathnaver, 80; 4, T McPhee’s Scott, Wick, 77 Outbye; 5, MC Shearer’s Tib, Westfield, 77; 6, P Martin’s Jill, Glenlyon,71; 7, EC MacKinnon’s Buddy, Lochcarron, 70; 8, J McKenzie’s Tweedie, Turriff, 67; 9, J MacKillop's Straid Ben, Fort Augustus, 60 Outbye; 10, A Cameron’s Jess, Callander, 60. Local – 1, K Keith’s Skye, Durness; 2, N MacKenzie’s Sue, Durness; 3, M MacKay’s Cap, Durness; Young dogs -10 ran – 1, I Sutherland’s High Ash Hugo, Strathnaver; 2, K Keith’s Sassy, Durness.

Ellemford (Judge:K Lyon, Denholm) Open – 35 ran – 1, IM Brownlie’s Lia, Deuchrie, 91; 2, D Wallace’s Bill, Blythbank, 81; 3, M Arres’ Doug, Ashkirk, 80; 4, H Brown’s Mac, Coulter, 79; 5, M Davidson’s Angus, Lilburn,78 Outbye; 6, RB Henderson’s Tweed, Heriot, 78.

Lintrathen (Judge: N Campbell, Kinross) Open – 53 ran – 1, AD Carnegie’s Linburn Rook, Comrie,75; 2, S MacFarlane’s Willow, Blairgowrie, 69; 3, AD MacKenzie’s Bhoy, Lochearnhead,69; 4, A-C Andersson’s Butch, Glenlyon, 66; 5, J Menzies’ Baledmund Shaw, Tulliemet, 64; 6, M Young’s Stewie (Sture), Coupar Angus, 64; 7, AD Carnegie’s Jess, Comrie, 64; 8, M Watt’s Dale, Kirriemuir, 55; 9, A Olofssson’s Craig, Alyth, 55; 10, J Angus’ Fly, Ladybank, 54. Local – 1, M Watt’s Dale, Kirriemuir; 2, L Magnusson’s Kate, Mid Derry; 3, L Magnusson’s Gael, Mid Derry; 4, L Magnusson’s Liz, Mid Derry; 5, M Watt’s Dale, Kirriemuir, Nap.