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The British Cocker Championships 2001

(Published in Spaniels In The Field Spring 2001)

Saturday the 13th of January welcomed the cocker championships that were underway at 8.30 am. The grounds used were the same as the previous two days, consisting of woodlands and brambles, with stick piles and deadfall branches in areas. Twenty-four dogs qualified and eighteen dogs started the trial on Saturday in a woodland full of pheasants. Within seconds Carl Colclough and Rynebank Jess found a pheasant, which was shot at 50 yards. Two quick handles and the wounded bird was in the bag and Jess hunted on. She again produced for the gunners and this concluded her run. FTCH Tawnyhill Andra had a good first run handled by Mr. R. Plunkett. She had a good find followed by a swift mark and retrieve for her first bird, then quickly produced another, sealing an “A” run with another good mark and retrieve. FTCH Whisk Ci Dwr owned and handled by Dickie Jones started with great ground treatment and solid hunting ability. A bird had been shot across the park and Judge Openshaw asked Dickie to collect. He tried on the runner for several minutes until Carl Colclough and FTCH Kelmscott Swoop were brought across to try for the eyewipe. Carl cast Swoop onto the line, she hunted for 10 seconds, then took the line of the crippled bird for 50 yards before puffing it safely in Carl’s hands. This was the end of a very short championship for Dickie and FTCH Whisk Ci Dwr. The gallery was abuzz with the eye wipe, and Swoop became the gallery’s favorite very quickly. Next in was FTCH Findlays Flyer, owned and handled by Mr. B. Buchan. This stylish lemon and white bitch dazzled us with brilliant groundwork, great finds and good retrieves. Commander (Pinky) Collard’s bitch, Elan Patsy, handled by Mr. Keith Chudley, came up under Judge Openshaw and hunted well with good solid finds and great work in the stick piles. A bird was shot at and fell over 100 yards away. Judge Openshaw closed the distance and sent Mr. Chudley and Patsy on the retrieve. Patsy made short work of the dead bird and concluded her run with a short hunt in brambles. Three dogs were called to the run off. Carl Colclough and FTCH Kelmscott Swoop ran off against Peter Jones and FTCH Rowston Star. Swoop hunted hard and fast and got the forward cast from Star, Star found a rabbit and moved a fraction. Peter was picked up and Mr. A. Robinson with Maesydderwen Soloman ran against Carl and Swoop. Swoop found a pheasant which was shot 20 yards in front of Soloman. Heartbreakingly, Soloman broke, thus concluding his championship hopes.

The judges called the trial to a close and we all eagerly awaited placements.

1st Place:
FTCH Kelmscott Swoop (Bitch)
Owned & handled by: Mr. Carl Colclough
Sire: FTCH Parkbreck Jake
Dam: Gemmy’s Dazzler
Breeder: Mr. P Bishop

2nd Place:
FTCH Rowston Star (Bitch)
Owners: Mr. and Mrs. P E. Jones
Handled by: Mr. Peter Jones
Sire: FTCH Maesydderwen Jackdaw
Dam: FTCH Rowston Imp
Breeder: Mr. Dia Ormond

3rd Place:
Elan Patsy (Bitch)
Owner: Lt. Cdr. E.A.J.Collard
Handled by: Mr Keith Chudley
SireL FTCH Parkbreck Jefferson
Dam: FTCH Elan Garbo
Breeder: Lt. Cdr. E.A.J.Collard


FTCH Wintonwildfowl Serin (Bitch)
Owner: Mr. Meredith Long
Handled by: Mr. Peter Jones
Sire: FTCH Regulusknowe Gold Of Maesydderwen
Dam: Housty Saffron

Rynebank Jess (Bitch)
Owner: Mr. David Sowerby
Handled by: Mr. Carl Colclough
Sire: Norbreck Rustier
Dam: Kenkew Lin

Miss Alexandrovna (Bitch)
Owned and handled by: Mr. Edward Martin Sire: Bracken Blaze
Dam: Merehouse Lady
Guns Award: Maesydderwen Soloman
Owned and handled by: Mr. A. Robinson

FTCH Kelmscott Swoop and handler Carl Colclough also placed 3rd in the Cocker Championships in 1999/2000. Carl also won the Championships with FTCH Jasper Of Parkbreck in 1991/92.

Our host, Mr. Paul Van Vlissingen, who followed the trial picking uncollected birds with his black Labrador, made us most welcome on his estate throughout the three days of trials. The headkeeper, Chris Green, has been working since the spring of last year, and he certainly showed us terrific spaniel country with plenty of birds for a successful day.

I am looking forward to my next visit for the 72nd, Spaniel Championships on Monday the 14th to Wednesday the 16th of January, 2002 at Brocklesby Park, North East Lincolnshire.

1st Place: FTCH Kelmscott Swoop