Jess and Meg both flew across the fields at Ivy House

THE trial at Ivy House Farm, Hope, Minsterley, again hosted by Lesley Jones, was made more interesting by a fetch through three fields.

Most handlers chose to outrun to the right. The away-drive was to the left after the Cheviot cross hoggs, which worked consistently well all day, had been turned around a cone in front of the handler.

There was no shed and the pen was replaced by a chute with no gate. There were 35 runs in each of the two sessions.

Bryan Pugh and Jess won in the morning, followed closely by Yvonne Abrey and Fly. Following his fourth place earlier in the day, Dick Montgomery and Meg won the afternoon session.

The Mere House trial, hosted by the Nicholls family who provided the field, the sheep and the catering, is traditionally supported by handlers from many South Wales counties.

The field drops away from the handler, crosses a broken hedge-line and rises steeply to the lift. Should dogs fail to break out from the first field, they would not make it to the lift.

Drives were to the handler’s left and there was no shed and the back of the pen was removed in the afternoon. While they worked well around the field, the Welsh Mountain hoggs were almost impossible to pen.

Morning winner

Ian Jones, who judged in the afternoon, won the morning session with Jess and was third with Tom. Finishing second was Nigel Watkins with Jody. Alison Smith took first and second in the novice with Lil and Meg.

Kevin Evans and Mirk led the afternoon session for some time, but it was Mervyn Lewis and Scottn who had good sheep and made good use of them, who won both the open and novice classes.

John Ayron Watkins with Mac, and Rhys Jones with Roy, lost only one point more than Mervyn to secure second and third places.

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