The New Zealand Sheep Dog Trial Association, in conjunction with sponsors Tux, holds a series of yarding challenges throughout NZ every year from June, culminating in a grand final in January.
Owing to many reasons, mainly Covid-19, the Ohingaiti challenge was cancelled but thanks to local farmer and dog trialist Bernard Arends it has been rescheduled for July 2, 3 and 4 with the final on July 5 at his property Te Oranga Farm, Graham Rd, Dannevirke.
Both the drought and Covid-19 forced the cancellation of a lot of dog trials this year and Bernard knew dog trial enthusiasts were keen for a get together and catch up.
After discussion with the NZ Sheep Dog Trial Association president Pat Coogan, it was decided to hold the Ohingaiti trial at Dannevirke with Bernard as the convener.
Entries from all over the North Island – Northland, Gisborne, Taranaki - have poured into the secretary and about 250 dogs are expected to compete over the first three days with the top 15 dogs coming back for our final on Sunday.
Among those competing will be the three senior cadets from ADB Williams Trusts Pukemiro Station near Dannevirke. They have been having extra tuition to prepare themselves and their dogs for the competition. The three junior cadets will also be involved throughout the trial helping with the sheep work.
Another Dannevirke local, Bo Milner, was set down to judge at Ohingaiti so will now be the judge at the Graham Rd venue.
Bo and his dog Snow were the 2018 winners of the grand final which that year was held in Taumaranui. At each of the eight venues throughout NZ the first and second placegetters go to the grand final.
It is a great spectator sport and the public are more than welcome. It is free of charge. Travel about 9km south from Dannevirke on SH2 and it will be signposted to the right at Oringi.