By Sine Robertson

Good work on the course, a nice turn round the handler’s feet and a steady push on the drive away gave Dave Gilchrist’s Mainstay Bud the edge over the field at Dryden.

The Cheviot hoggs behaved very well on a course that ran down hill from the starting post, but they were not keen to be driven away on the first leg of the drive.

Bud (N Watkins’ Tanhill Alex, S Morgan’s Kilcreen Jill) ran out and lifted well, and had a good fetch, with just minor wavers. He had no problem turning the sheep round Dave, sent them away on the drive and although the line wiggled a little, Bud put them through the gate with a neat turn.

The cross drive started well, and although the hoggs got up speed approaching the gate, they went through and Bud brought them down to the open pen. He penned without a break and although, as good sheep do, they stuck together at the shed, Dave and Bud separated them and completed the winning run with a good shed.

After difficulties outbye, Ian Brownlie’s Jan (N Gillon’s Shweep, IM Brownlie’s Lia) fetched her sheep nicely and made a good start to the drive, working hesitantly, coaxed on by Ian’s commands and struggled to get the cross drive gate. A clean pen and shed gave Jan a boost and secured second place for her.

A steady run on a big course from Alasdair Mundell’s Ben won the day at Burnfoot, Sanquhar, where Texel cross hoggs, running in fours, were good to handle on a flat field. With a big outrun, young dogs coped well although they found the sheep a little tricky to shed.

Ben (S Van Der Zweep’s Gary, DL Rees’ Kate) ran out well, but had little difficulty on the lift, which affected the start of the fetch. Ben recovered well, settled the hoggs and got his fetch gates. He turned the sheep neatly round the post, took them on a good line up the first leg of the drive and made a neat turn through the gates.

He had the sheep at a good pace on the cross drive, but they came in just a little low on the gates and although he turned them up, the hoggs just slipped past on the far side of the gate. Despite that, Ben settled them and made a good line back to the chute. Alasdair and Ben worked well at the chute and got them safely through; a clean shed completed the winning run.

Ron Weir’s Rob (P Byrne Moss and Rose) ran out well and achieved the best lift of the day. Rob fetched the sheep on a good, straight line and put them safely through the gates with very little to fault him.

Rob turned the sheep nicely round Ron, but they became a little unsettled on the first leg of the drive and missed the gate. Rob recovered well on the next leg and got his sheep through the cross drive gates. The pair had to work hard at the chute and there were a few breaks before they eventually succeeded in getting the sheep safely through. A perfect shed finished the work in second place.

Ron Weir’s Gael (R Hutchinson’s Sweep, K Doig’s Jura) responded to a command on her way out to reach her sheep and lifted them in a controlled manner, but they went off line and missed the fetch gates. Gael worked well from there and made a good start to the drive, but the hoggs were a little unsettled on the cross drive and just missed another set of gates. Difficulties at the chute led to time running out, but Gael won the novice section.

Willie Todd’s Meg (R Games’ Roy, MG Jones’ Cwmadog Fflyff) ran out well and lifted in a nice, controlled manner. Meg fetched the sheep on a good line and put them safely through the gates. She turned them at the handler’s post and took a good line up the first leg of the drive, but they slipped by the gates.

Willie and Meg worked well on the cross drive with a good line, and got the sheep safely through those gates. The hoggs were nicely settled, which worked well, and Meg achieved a good chute. The shed was a little tricky, but Willie and Meg eventually mastered it and finished first of the pro novices.

At Troneyhill the following week, an excellent run from John Allan’s Mainstay Ace, impressed judge, Allan Wilson, as “one of the best nursery runs” he has seen.

The Texel cross ewe lambs ran very well on a gently rising course, but they could take off on the drive away, under pressure.

Ace (N Watkins’ Tanhill Alex, S Morgan’s Kilcreen Jill) started his run with an excellent outrun, and while he was a little hesitant to lift, he took John’s whistle and fetched the sheep.

They went slightly offline at the start of the fetch, but once corrected, Ace brought the sheep to John on a straight line, turned them and drove them away. He stopped before the first gate, but put his sheep through and turned them nicely on to the second leg. The cross drive went well and an excellent turn took them on the way to a clean open pen and shed and first place.

Ian Brownlie’s Jan (N Gillon’s Shweep, IM Brownlie’s Lia) had an excellent outrun and lift, and only minor wavers on the fetch. After a good drive away, she was hesitant on the cross drive, but got her sheep through the gate. A good pen followed and at the shed, Jan split her sheep but was not entirely convincing in taking control. With good work achieved overall, she was Borders’ runner up for the second week.

At Yonder Bognie, the cross ewe lambs were presented well and ran exceptionally well on a course that rose from right to left, creating a steep drive away. Despite the ‘hands free’ open pen, most young dogs penned.

Geordie Simpson’s Fly (G Simpson’s Dash and Queen) ran out and lifted flawlessly, let the line waver a little on the fetch, had an excellent drive with just a waver before the first gate and completed the winning run with a clean pen and shed.

Kennelmate, Gin (DK Evans’ Denwyn Doug, RFM Ellis’ Gwen), ran out well, lifted and fetched faultlessly, but his lines wavered on the drive and his turn through the first drive gate was not ideal. More clean work at hand secured second place for Gin and double success for Geordie.

The course at Piperpool fell slightly and created a cross drive that was hard to judge. The ewes wanted to pull to the handler’s right and dogs had to balance that.

Elinore Nilsson’s Tweeddale Fergie (W McAllister’s Spot, D Aitken’s Tammi) kept the sheep moving from the start, ensuring they neither turned nor stopped. She worked well outbye and started out on a good drive, but had a struggle to put the sheep through the first gate and two ewes turned away, just short of the gate.

Regrouped, the turn was neat and the cross drive successful. A quick pen and a straightforward shed set the seal on a smooth flowing run in first place.

Michael Gallagher gave Dalriada Bess (A Owen’s Llangwym Cap, M Gallagher’s Val) an ‘insurance’ command on her outrun and she reached her sheep only to find that one stood apart, an attitude she maintained, forcing Bess to repeatedly remind her that she was in charge and the sheep were to move together.

Bess fetched them on a good line, turned them and drove them very well, always working to keep the outsider on the inside. Approaching the cross drive gate, Bess had to leave the three to bring the fourth in, bunched the lot and put them through. A good return and a clean pen and shed gave Bess a hard earned second place.

LEADING awards

Dryden (Judge: K Lyon, Hawick). Open – 18 ran – 1, D Gilchrist’s Mainstay Bud, Oxton, 88; 2, IM Brownlie’s Jan, Deuchrie, 85; 3, E Foster’s Bess, Westruther, 84; 4, WS Elliot’s Brook, Yetholm, 83; 5, IM Brownlie’s Boyd, Deuchrie, 75; 6, J Allan’s Mainstay Ace, Mt Benger, 74; 7, R Halliday’s Lad, Stow, 68; 8, J Robinson’s Tweed, Coldingham, 58.

Burnfoot, Sanquhar (Judge: D Robertson, Langholm). Nursery – 14 ran – 1, AR Mundell’s Ben, Moffat, 77; 2, R Weir’s Rob, Westerhall, 66; 3, T Blacklock’s Dan, Kirkconnel, 60 Outbye; 4, WJ Welsh’s Niro Tim, Sanquhar, 60; 5 T Blacklock’s Craig, Kirkconnell, 57; 6, W Todd’s Corrie, Langholm, 50; 7, R Malcolm’s Gael, Gatehouse; 8, J White’s Zeva, Dalry; 9, M Forster’s Dell, Irongray; Sportsmanship – J White. Novice – R Weir’s Gael, Westerhall; Pro novice – 1, W Todd’s Meg, Langholm, 77; 2, D McMillan's Ruby, Carsphairn, 63.

Yonder Bognie (Judge: H Munro, Inverness). Nursery – 21 ran – 1, G Simpson’s Fly, Forgue, 96; 2, G Simpson’s Gin, Forgue, 95; 3, J Grant’s Pat, Dunbeath, 93; 4, G Simpson’s Joe, Forgue, 92; 5, I MacDonald’s Ben, Staffin, 90; 6, S Renwick’s Dell, Inverbroom, 89 Outbye; 7, J Grant’s Garth Brynn, Dunbeath, 89; 8, I Sutherland’s Foinaven Drift, Strathnaver, 86; 9, W Cormack’s Maid, Dunnet, 85; 10, H Johnstone’s Taff, Fyvie, 83.

Troneyhill (Judge: A Wilson, Philiphaugh). Open – 17 ran – 1, J Allan’s Mainstay Ace, Mt Benger, 94; 2, IM Brownlie’s Jan, Deuchrie, 90; 3, IM Brownlie’s Boyd, Deuchrie, 88; 4, R Halliday’s Lad, Stow, 86; 5, WS Elliot’s Brook, Yetholm, 77; 6, D Gilchrist’s Mainstay Bud, Oxton, 75; 7, M Arres’ Midge, Ashkirk, 70; 8, E Foster’s Bess, Westruther, 67. Novice – 1, R Halliday’s Lad, Stow, 86; 2, S Blaikie’s Bailey, Cranshaws, 60; 3, G Pate’s Mo, Humbie, 50.

Piperpool (Judge: IM Brownlie, Deuchrie). Nursery – 30 ran – 1, E Nilsson’s Fergie, Balintore, 89; 2, M Gallagher’s Dalriada Arya, Connachan, 87; 3, S Alexander’s Flo, Rickarton, 85; 4, J Hastie’s Graylees Rose, Saline, 76 Outbye; 5, AD Carnegie’s Scott, Comrie, 76; 6, P Martin’s Corrie, Glenlyon, 74; 7, D McMullen’s Glenview Sid, Glen Clova, 71 Outbye; 8, A Olofsson’s Rob, Alyth, 71; 9, M Young’s Jess, Coupar Angus, 70; 10, F McCloskey’s Meg, Loch Lomond, 65. Novice – 1, K Craig’s Eadie, Tulliemet, 78; 2, F McCloskey’s Meg, Loch Lomond, 65; 3, K Paterson’s Mainstay Mitch, Kinross, 50.

Northumberland Nursery League

Allendale (Judge: A Jardine, Langholm,). Nursery – 32 ran – 1, M Davidson’s Poppy, Lilburn, 85; 2, D Henderson’s Burndale Ben, Allendale, 78; 3, M Davidson’s Groesfaen Rhanne, Lilburn, 76; 4, E Irvine’s Tess, Great Elsdon, 74; 5, B Jordan’s, Flake, Whitfield, 73; 6, P Turnbull’s Jim, Debdon, 69.

Whitefield (Judge: D Harrison, Selside). Nursery – 32 ran – 1, M Davidson’s Poppy, Lilburn, 80; 2, P Turnbull’s Jim, Debdon, 79; 3, E Irvine’s Graylees Rita, Great Elsdon, 75; 4, D Henderson’s Burndale Ben, Allendale, 74; 5, B Jordan’s, Judge, Whitfield, 72 Outbye; 6, D Henderson’s Joy, Allendale, 72.