A clean start gave Xander Kent and Myllin Jill a clear lead at Neilston, the first open trial of the new season.

The cross Mule hoggs were unpredictable on a long narrow course set on gently rising ground, but some packets were better than others and the prize winning dogs achieved a good standard of work with the sheep,

Myllin Jill (O Murguia Ruiz de Olano’s Spot, HJ Francis Meg) ran out and lifted cleanly, had a good fetch and drive with a slightly wide turn through the first drive gate her biggest fault. A clean pen followed and a good shed set the seal on a comfortable lead over the field.

Neil Gillon’s Boss (S Perellio’s Murgia Jim, R Hutchinson’s Denwyn Moya) stopped twice on his outrun, but responded to Neil’s whistles and found his sheep. He worked well on his fetch and drive and penned cleanly. A good shed secured second place.

Emma Gray’s Graylees Chip (E Gray’s Telf Joff and Scalpsie Nessie) overshot his sheep a little at the top, which impacted on his lift, but he fetched and drove with just minor wavers, and again penned faultlessly. A good shed completed the run in third place.

Leading Awards

Neilston (Judge: A MacDiarmid, Strathlachlan). Open – 55 ran – 1, A Kent’s Myllin Jill, Dunoon, 96; 2, N Gillon’s Boss, Barr, 92; 3, E Gray’s Graylees Chip, Ardros, 90; 4, C Caygill’s Seth, Whinnyliggate, 88; 5, M Young’s Jess, Stranraer, 85; 6, J L’Etang’s Mac, Slamannan, 84; 7, JJ Templeton’s Max, Fenwick, 83; 8, O Dawidowicz’s Moy, Bute, 82.