If you were from north of the elbow, you had a good chance of coming out on top as the Hawke's Bay sheep dog trial season proper got under way.

Over three days of trials, overlapping the Omakere trials on Thursday and Friday and the Waimarama-Maraetotara trials at Kahuranaki on Friday and Saturday, six of the eight titles went to the area north of the Devil's Elbow, an area good enough to be called "Wairoa", according to one of the loyal sheep dog triallists of Northern Hawke's Bay.

All four titles at Omakere went that way, including a huntaway pair to Hawke's Bay Sheep Dog Trial Centre president Clark Chrystal, with Nell on the zig zag course and Trix in the straight hunt.

They were two of the five dogs he trialled before heading for Kahuranaki, where he was also one of the judges, and where there was a unique heading and huntaway double for Northern Hawke's Bay trialist Tom Manson, with Pip in the long head, and Buck in the straight hunt.

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Buck was one of two maiden dogs to take the major titles, Dave Wallace, another from north of the elbow, winning the Omakere short head and yard with maiden Dev.
The Te Pohue trials are on tomorrow and Saturday.

Omakere (Feb 8-9)

Long head: Kevin O'Connor, Jo, 96pts, 1; Bo Milner, Snow, 95.5pts, 2; Nigel Clark, Jan, 95pts, 3; Bob Bruce, Cheat, 93pts, 4; Jeremy Berry, Turbo, 92.5pts, 5. Intermediate: Rocky Hawkins, Glen. Maiden: Becs Baynes, Leo.

Short head and yard: Dave Wallace, Dev, 96pts, 1; Jeremy Berry, Turbo, 95.5pts, 2; Dave Wallace, Blue, 92pts, 3; Laurie Horsfall, Raid, 91pts, 4; Graham Duff, Jess, 90pts, 5. Intermediate and Maiden: Dave Wallace, Dev.

Zig zag hunt: Clark Chrystal, Nell, 96pts, 1; Mark Lowry, Chun, 95pts, 2; Rocky Hawkins, Kane, 94.5pts, 3; Becs Baynes, Scud, 94pts, 4; Graham Duff, Rod, 93.75pts, 5. Intermediate: Mark Lowry, Chunk. Maiden: Graham Duff, Rod.

Straight hunt: Clark Chrystal, Trix, 97pts, 1; Rocky Hawkins, Kane, 95.5pts, 2; Mark Lowry, Chunk, 95pts, 3; Becs Baynes, Tom, 94.5pts, 4; Clark Chrystal, Duke, 94pts, 5. Intermediate: Mark Lowry, Chunk. Maiden: Clark Chrystal, Duke.

Waimarama-Maraetotara (Feb 9-10)

Long head: Tom Manson, Pip, 96pts, 1; Sheena Martin, Troy, 95pts, 2; Don Avenell, McCaw, 94.1pts, 3; Nigel Clark, Jan, 94pts, 4; Selwyn Dorward, Queen, 93.5pts, 5. Intermediate: Tom Manson, Pip. Maiden: Selwyn Dorward, Queen.

Short head and yard: Bob Bruce, Susan, 98.5pts, 1; Bob Bruce, Jaco, 98pts, 2; Bob Bryson, Rex, 97.5pts, 3; Laurie Horsfall, Raid, 97pts, 4; Tom Manson, Pip, 96.5pts, 5.
Intermediate: Bob Bruce, Jaco. Maiden: Rob Gallien, Midge, 94.5pts.

Zig zag hunt: Rocky Hawkins, Kane, 97.5pts, 1; Becs Baynes, Scud, 96.5pts, 2; Clark Chrystal, Nell, 95.75pts, 3; N George, Nugget, 95.5pts, 4; Dan Jury, Chrystal, 95pts, 5. Inytermediate: Becs Baynes, Scud. Maiden: Dan Jury, Chrystal.

Straight hunt: Tom Manson, Buck, 96.75pts, 1; Rob Gallien, Pound, 96.5pts, 2; Dan Jury, Chrystal, 96.25pts, 3; G Bryson, Bronk, 96pts, 4; Aaron Ryan, Stacey, 95.5pts, 5. Intermediate and Maiden: Tom Manson, Buck.