By Brenda O'Leary
Wanganui Centre Publicity Office
Otairi-Pukeroa Collie Club held their 75th jubilee over the weekend at Otiwhiti Station, and the event was well supported by Wanganui centre competitors.
Club secretary Anna Tipling did a huge job organising to ensure the smooth running of the event, ably assisted by long-time treasurer Hugh Lilburn who sourced sponsors and produced a memorial booklet which was given to every competitor.
The Duncan family have given generous support over the years from when the trial was held at Otairi Station and now Otiwhiti Station, alowing the use of their land, sheep and facilities.
The judges on each of the courses were all former members of the club — David Sheild, on the longhead course, farms on his own account at Dannevirke; Guy Peacock (shorthead) has a small property at Dannevirke and sells fertiliser; Alan Irwin (zig-zag hunt) manages Toromiro Station at Te Karaka, north of Gisborne; and Mike Devlin (straight hunt — an event he won at the 50th jubilee) runs his own home kill business at Feilding.
They are still all active dog triallists, and have all featured at North Island and national level.
Craig Johns from the Raetihi Club had a trial to remember, winning the longhead with Ash and the straight hunt with maiden dog Rum and bagging a cool $2000 in prize money.
Nick Tipling, club vice-president and course steward on the shorthead, also had a good weekend, placing in the shorthead and zig-zag hunt.
Rob Mather and Sheen from Foxton were at their best, winning the shorthead with a three-point margin. But the duo missed the top dog title by one point as Jamie Shrubsall and Whip claimed that competition by placing fourth in the shorthead, giving them 18points.
Gavin Guiniven and Dark hauled in Gavin Drake and Glen to take the top huntaway title with 14 points — one point ahead. A great effort from them all in one of the tightest competitions in recent years.
Because the Ohingaiti Trial was cancelled and there was no runoff, it was decided to share the prize money on the Young Gun competition equally among the four top place-getters in each event.
Hunts: Jack Phillips and Stone; Mark Farrell and Grit; James Alford and Mate; Angus Higgins and Sledge.
Class 1; 1, C Johns & Ash 97.5; 2, S Whiteman & Reign 97.25; 3, V Marfell & Dove 97; 4, W Clare & Trac 96.5; 5, S Martin & Bribe 96.
Intermediate: V Marfell & Dove 97. Maiden: K Fox & Scout 91.5.
Class 2: 1, R Mather & Sheen 97; 2, G Brown & Cheat 94; 3, N Tipling & Minnie 93.5; 4, J Shrubsall & Whip 92.5; 5, W Falkner & Silk 92.25.
Intermediate: G Brown & Cheat 94. Maiden: S Ross & Haze 62.5.
Class 3: 1, J McAlley & Rowdy 97.5; 2, J Shrubsall & Stag 96.5; 3, N Tipling & Buster 96.25; 4, T Manson & Spud 96; 5, G Brown & Tempo 95.5.
Intermediate: N Tipling & Buster 96.25. Maiden N Tipling & Buster 96.5.
Class 4: 1, C Johns & Rum 98.5; 2, J Brennan & Bose 98.25; 3, D Stuart & Gus 98; 4, G Guiniven & Dark 97.75; 5, S Prouting & Vince 97.5.
Intermediate: C Johns & Rum 98.5. Maiden: C Johns & Rum 98.5.
*The Tux North Island championships start on May 7, hosted by the Te Aute club in Hawke's Bay at their grounds on Te Aute Trust Road. The Tux South Island and NZ championships are being held in Marlborough from May 28.