JINX (Steve Murray, Gloucester) gets the evil eye from an edgy beast during yesterday's dog trials at Murwillumbah Showground.
JINX (Steve Murray, Gloucester) gets the evil eye from an edgy beast during yesterday's dog trials at Murwillumbah Showground. Tweed Daily News/Craig Sadler

Dick goes one better with surprise quinella

DICK Chapman thought he was in with a chance to win back-to-back trophies at the Tweed River Agricultural Society Dog Trials.

However, the Stokers Siding handler never expected to take out first and second in the Shirley Streetfield Open event at the annual working dog trials at the Murwillumbah Showground over the weekend.

“I had three dogs with me on the day and the third, Buck, missed out on his chance at the final by one point,” Mr Chapman said.

“So I would have had three dogs in the final if Buck had had a better day.”

Mr Chapman's border collie Wally, with six years' experience in the competition ring, as well as working the Chapman and other farms around the Tweed, beat his kennel mate Joe the red kelpie to the title.

“I feel good that I was able to win again this year, but I feel a bit funny about it because I am also the organiser of the event,” Mr Chapman said.

“But anyone who knows anything about competitive dog trials knows that it is more about how the dogs perform on the day than how they are handled.”

Some of the country's top working dogs and handlers travelled from as far north as Crows Nest in Queensland and as far south as Gloucester, in the Hunter Valley, to compete.

Despite his personal success Mr Chapman said the highlight of the weekend was when six-year-old Paul Creighton, from Casino, worked the ring with his dog Cobber to win the Barry Roach Encouragement Award.

“He was only a tiny little thing and he commanded his dog and cattle with confidence,” Mr Chapman said.

“It's great to see the next generation enjoying the sport.”

Peter Baker, from Murwillumbah, and his dog Chicko won the Crosthwaite Family Bush Dog Trial for Tweed dogs who work with their farmer-owners on the land.

Mr Baker also took second place in the class with another dog, Sugar.

The Murwillumbah Veterinary Clinic Maiden winner was Lou Malloy with Bob, while the AMB Meats novice event was won by Danny Rapman, from Casino, with his dog Banjo.

Mr Chapman said the event was good practise for the State of Origin Dog Trials, where he will be one of five handlers and their dogs to represent New South Wales in the annual competition in Far North Queensland next weekend.



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