World Sheepdog Trials 2005
7th - 10th July 2005
Charleville Estate, Tullamore, Co. Offaly, Ireland
Gordon Watts & York, from England, winners of the World Championships 2005
Qualifying Rounds - Thursday 7th July 2005
The second world trials got underway on the Charleville Estate in Tullamore, Ireland, where 241 competitors from around the world are competing to find top dog in the collie world.
Three separate fields were are being run for the qualifiers with some suffolk cross ewes which were good to handle in the cool, dry weather, but on the third field, scotch cross ewes were making more of a test.
D Robertson from Scotland with Cap completes the penning
Qualifying Rounds - Friday 8th July 2005
Another dull, cloudy day at the world trials, Tullamore, saw some good running, with conditions excellent for both handlers and sheep. Pick of the runs on field 1 saw a great cheer going up for T Wilson from the US with Pearl, as he completed a great run, picking up 191 points and sailed through to the semis. Also through was Aled Owen with the reigning world champion, Bob, who looked very much in control on a good run. He finished with 189 points
On Field 2 the sheep were a bit more testing, as the Scots ewes were a little more flighty than the Suffolk cross ewes used on the other fields, but CM Magnusson, Sweden with Fleet, a 7 year old dog mastered the ewes, and picked up 194 points for his efforts.
On Field 3, another Scandinavian, JA Hansen with Tika put in a great run to cruise through to the semis, picking up 191 points on the most difficult course of the three fields, but it was DI Morgan from Wales who put in the run of the day with 3 year old Ned, picking up a total of 198 points.
S Glen with Pleat, all the way from Canada had a good run, and making 179 points
Semi Final Rounds - Saturday 9th July 2005
Another great day of trailing at Tullamore saw a near full house as the crowds gathered in the sunshine, which had been threatening to get out all week, finally did.
The day was lit up with the run of Jimmy Cropper and Sid, as they stormed to the top of the leader board with a score of 398 points out oif a possible 440. It was a truly magical run for the runner up partnership at the last world trials held in Bala, 2002. They scored maximum points in the Outrun, Lift, Pen and Single.
Other good runs included EC Mckinnon with Glen, who scored 379 points, Serge van Der Sweep with both Roy and Glen. Michael Longton was the last to run with Monty, and put in a great run, but saw the bell beat him, just as he made the single, but he did enough to put him through to the last day.
But the day belonged to Jimmy Cropper and Sid, who will be hoping that their form carries over to the final, and that they can move up one place from the last championships.
Ms K Soderberg, from Sweden, takes her dog Lotus, into the cross drive
World Final - Sunday 10th July 2005
Well, the day dawned, 241 competitors whittled to just 16, all dreaming of lifting the trophy, but the day which had promised so much the evening before was shrouded in mist, which meant a delay to the proceedings for nearly 2 hours. When the mist cleared, the sun was soon onto its maximum heat, which created less than ideal conditions for both the sheep and dogs, with a lot of handlers retiring, both as a result of a very challenging course, and the heat, which proved too much for some dogs, and their handlers retired them for their own protection.
L Watkins on the 4th run of the day, before the conditions got too extreme, set the standard, which not many exceeded, with a run of some distinction, and saw him end with 505 points
Jimmy Cropper was the favourite with Sid, after putting on a scorcher of a run the previous day in the semis, but an uncharacteristic crossed outrun, which fooled most dogs, and a less than smooth lift left Jimmy with a lot of work to do. After a mammoth shedding time, stuck with just one ewe to take out, Sid and Jimmy penned with 3 minutes to spare, and a total of 409 points, to place him 5th.
Serge van der Zweep, the only handler with two dogs in the final was on next, and a great run with Glen saw him leap up the leader board, where he finished in third place, same as at the Bala world trials, 3 years ago.
But the day belonged to the Northern Irishman, Gordon Watt, who shepherds in Derbyshire, running for England, with York. Running in the heat, he gently and unhurriedly walked the sheep around the course and into the history books with 507 points, the winning margin double of the last world trials, a mere two!!
Paparazzi....photos of all the handlers at the presentations