Ian Sutherland’s Cap took full advantage of good packets of sheep and a steady run, with all obstacles achieved, gave him a narrow edge over a closely packed field at Lieuray.

Packets of fit Cheviot hoggs gathered from different hefts proved a little unpredictable on a course that fell away from the starting post. If they split into familiar alliances there was little time to regroup and realign them, and a knowe on the cross drive could encourage them offline, so some gates were missed, but they were happy to unite to burst from the pen.

Cap (RJ Hutchinson’s Jonah, C Taylor’s Redgate Midge) ran out well, lifted cleanly and had a good fetch. Although the hoggs were offline on the the cross drive, Cap put them through the gate, but they broke from the pen and circled it before he managed to pen successfully. A clean shed secured first place.

Kennel mate, Ian’s Dan (Hielan Cap) (J MacDiarmid’s Rab, S Robertson’s Ruby), ran out cleanly to his sheep, lifted very well but had minor wavers on the fetch. A missed cross drive gate made a hole in the work, but a clean pen and shed helped to make up for that and he earned second place, ahead of third on his outbye work.

Michael Shearer’s Viking Cap (JW Common’s Grit, B Smith’s Lass) ran out well, and although his lift was not so smooth, he had a good fetch. The hoggs were off line on the cross drive, and although again, he got them through the gate, he too let his sheep burst from the pen and go round before he put them in and shut the gate. A clean shed brought his points level with Dan’s, in third place.

A fierce wind upset the Blackface hoggs at the Hopes, making them hard to pen and flighty on the course, causing the young dogs to overflank them on a rising course which otherwise suited the dogs and spectators alike.

Ian Brownlie’s Lark (D Robertson’s Joe, A Watson’s Fan) ran out and lifted cleanly and had a good fetch. His turn round Ian’s feet was wide, and there were slight wavers on the first leg of the drive, but his cross drive was faultless. Like others, the pen was a struggle but once it was achieved, a good shed completed the work in first place.

Ross Henderson’s Spot (D Kinloch’s Zac, R Henderson’s Jude) responded to whistles from Ross on his outrun, found his sheep and lifted cleanly. He had wavers on the fetch but he got his gate and although he too had wavers on the drive away, the cross drive was clean. Again, a difficult pen was followed by a good shed and spot took second place.

Bailey Parker’s Duke (DK Evans’ Tanhill Glen, B Renwick’s Bec) had an outstanding outrun and a clean lift. The fetch started off in the same vein, until the hoggs slipped the gate. Following the pattern of the day, the line of the first leg of the drive wavered, but the second was perfect. Difficulties at the pen left the run unfinished, but with a good start, Duke took third place.

Leading Awards

Lieuray (Judge: I MacDonald, Staffin). Open – 30 ran – 1, I Sutherland’s Cap, Strathnaver, 83; 2, I Sutherland’s Dan (Hielan Cap), Strathnaver, 82 outbye; 3, MC Shearer’s Viking Cap, Westfield, 82; 4, J MacKillop’s Zak, Fort Augustus, 78; 5, N Sutherland’s Spot, Strathnaver, 76 outbye; 6, MC Shearer’s Heilan Rab, Westfield, 76; £500 raised for Scottish National trial fund.

The Hopes (Judge: D Kinloch, Kilsyth). Nursery – 16 ran – 1, IM Brownlie’s Lark, Dunbar, 76; 2, R Henderson’s Spot, Gifford, 72; 3, B Parker’s Duke, Heriot, 68; 4, S Morgan’s Mainstay Pip, Heriot, 67; 5, GC Gardner’s Glant Bob, Lesmahagow, 65; 6, RB Henderson’s Nell, Broughton, 58; 7, J Mitchell’s Aaro, Broughton, 54; 8, I Fleming’s Wheatwood Ruby, Douglas, 49; 9, H Brown’s Meg, Coulter, 45. Novice – Seven ran – 1, A Dawidowicz’s Roy, Dunsyre, 86; 2, G McKinlay’s Style, Coulter, 69 outbye; 3, A Walker’s Roy, Hamilton, 69; 4, R Reid’s Lynn, Carnwath, 52; 6, M McColm’s Viking Lee, Leadhills, 49.