A HIGH standard of work from Neil Gillon’s Boss, on a wild, wet and windy day at Dalfarson Park, left his competitors far behind him.

The Blackface hoggs ran well on the uphill course, but they were not keen to be penned.

The torrential rain and gale force winds, last weekend, did nothing to deter the spirits and standards of South Ayrshire handlers who ran two trials on the day, both topped by excellent runs, clearly ahead of their respective fields.

Boss (S Perello’s Murgia Jim, RJ Hutchinson’s Moya) ran out wide from Neil’s feet and despite that, came in tight at the top. He made an excellent job of fetching the sheep down and achieved a very good drive, with only the most minor of deviations. Clean work at hand completed the first winning run of the day, with the also rans a long way off in the distance.

In the second trial, Fraser Shennan’s Belle (F Shennan’s Spot, J Shennan’s Rose) ran out well, but stopped slightly short of her sheep.

She made a good fetch, and although the hoggs were low on the first leg and high on the cross drive, they went through both drive gates.

The flat ground at the bottom of the field filled up with water as the day went on, but despite that, Fraser and Bell completed the winning run with a clean pen and shed there.

The Cheviot ewes at Springhill ran well, but again, the weather made conditions difficult.

On the steep, uphill outrun, dogs jumped across a flooded burn, but most came in tight on their sheep at the top, which they then fetched down, over a bridge to the handler, although the ewes tended to be drawn to one side there.

With the strong wind affecting dogs’ hearing near the cross drive gate, most missed the gate.

Johnnie Robinson’s Burndale Nap (MC Shearer’s Jim, D Henderson’s Burndale Queen) started out wide on his outrun. Although he took a better line once he had crossed the burn, the ewes moved off as he approached. On the fetch, Nap kept flanking them, got them across the bridge and kept them on a good line from there.

He drove the sheep away, through the first gate and across the second leg. At the gate, he looked back to Johnnie, but could not hear his command, so the ewes were low and missed the gate. Once at hand, a clean pen and shed put the run into first place.

Cameron Dickson’s Tom (DK Evans’ Ace, U Stromer’s Caeflyin Gwen) ran out well, and Cameron stopped Tom on the point of balance to counteract the drift.

On the fetch, Tom could not hear his commands, so the ewes went a little off line, but he turned them neatly around Cameron’s feet for the next manoeuvre.

The first leg of the drive wavered a little, but Tom put the sheep through the gate, although, like others, he missed the cross drive gate.

A good return and a clean pen followed, but time ran out at the shed. Good work achieved on the field put the unfinished run into second place.

LEADING awards

Dalfarson Park I (Judge: B Welsh, Beoch). Nursery – 8 ran – 1, N Gillon’s Boss, Barr, 91; 2, K Donald’s Lyn, Dalrymple, 78; 3, I Fergie’s Cap, Straiton, 76; 4, J Shennan’s Floss, Barr, 72; 5, C Darwent’s Jill, Dumfries House, 71 outbye; 6, F Shennan’s Belle, Barr,71.

Dalfarson Park II (Judge: S Rae, Dalmellington). Nursery – 9 ran – 1, F Shennan’s Belle, Barr, 91; 2, R Dunlop’s Cass, Dalry, 85; 3, I Fergie’s Cap, Straiton,72; 4, N Gillon’s Boss, Barr, 68 outbye; 5, J Shennan’s Floss, Barr, 68 outbye; 6, C Darwent’s Jill, Dumfries House, 68.

Springhill (Judge: IM Brownlie, Deuchrie). Nursery – 9 ran – 1, J Robinson’s Burndale Nap, Coldingham, 78; 2, C Dickson’s Tom, Coldingham, 75; 3, D Gilchrist’s Gus, Oxton, 56; 4, A Dickman’s Meg (Kate), Oxton, 51; 5, JB Foster’s Graylees Tipsy, Earlston; 6, E Foster’s Bess, Westruther.

Parkhouse, Quothquan (Judge: M Condie, New Cumnock). Novice – 23 ran –Novice-pro (novice handler) – 1, B Sendlhofer’s Elf, Ambleside, 68; 2, S Roper’s Sky, Cleator Moor, 67; 3, D MacKinnon’s Jura, Bathgate, 63; 4, S Roper’s Blue, Cleator Moor, 63; 5, T McKinlay’s Kadi, Coulter, 62. Novice nursery handler and dog) – 1, S Roper’s Blue, Cleator Moor, 63; 2, K Blackwood’s Hank, Abington, 61; 3, D MacKinnon’s Jim, Bathgate, 52; 4,S McGill’s Rambo, Galashiels, 44; 5, J Moscrop’s Spot, Bewcastle, 42. Novice beginner (never competed) – 1, S McGill’s Rambo, Galashiels; 2, G McKinlay’s Chief, Coulter; 3, E Mackinnon’s Twist, Quothquan; £597 raised for Cancer Research.