Golden Retriever Club of Scotland
Championship Show 14th July 2023
My greatest thanks to the Officers and Committee of GRCS for their most generous hospitality and for inviting me to judge at this prestigious show, and also to all those who voted for me. The Guisachan Gathering is so special and much credit must go to everyone involved for hosting this truly amazing event, celebrating our wonderful breed in its birthplace. I felt extremely honoured to judge males at the end of a wonderful week and I’d like to express great appreciation to everyone who entered, meaning I enjoyed a fabulous day. There was an abundance of quality dogs, making for some difficult decisions. In several classes there were numerous exhibits I admired and many unplaced dogs were excellent representatives of our lovely breed. I was delighted with my final line up of outstanding Goldens. Many of the dogs entered had attended events held during the week and with the weather less than ideal and plenty of muddy conditions, I’d like to congratulate everyone for the remarkably high standard of presentation, with the vast majority being immaculate. I was conscious of a super atmosphere at the show, and it seemed the damp weather did nothing to deter everyone’s spirits. It was lovely to hear applause around the ring, all, no doubt, adding to the day and I thank you all, for the sporting acceptance of my decisions.
My grateful thanks to my stewards, Marie Grady and Jane Russell, who were splendidly efficient, keeping the ring running smoothly and taking photographs for me.
A couple of points to mention – I found a few mouths that weren’t quite correct and there were some very small teeth. Although I found many beautiful heads, there were a number with heaviness in skull or incorrect skull shape, also too much breadth of cheeks with a lack of chiselling and thus, the desired soft expression. Much has been written about incorrectly carried tails and there were a few here today and I did find some dogs that were long in loin.
It was a delight to see so many dogs really enjoying themselves. I found very few concerns relating to the Royal Kennel Club’s Breed Watch factors, with only a tiny proportion of exhibits whose appearance and balance would be enhanced with slightly longer legs, shorter back length or loss of weight. By contrast, the majority appeared fully ‘Fit for Function”.
My co judge, Sue Pounds Longhurst and I, were in full agreement that our main winners were all super, quality Goldens. We agreed that the bitch, Savage’s Weisford Presumed Innocent, be awarded BIS, that the dog Towers and Henderson’s Alibren Galileo To Westervane JW SGWC be awarded RBIS, BOS, and he was also BVIS, that the bitch Turner’s Grain Of Gold’s Arwen Of Amilone (Imp Swe) SGWC be awarded Best Vintage, while we asked the Referee, Wayne McGrath, to award BPIS, which went to the bitch, Gaylor’s Carolake X’Marks The Spot.
Veteran (11,2) What a way to start the day, with this lovely class of youthful Veterans.
1) Towers & Henderson’s Alibren Galileo To Westervane JW SGWC. DCC, RBIS, BOS, BVIS.
I was so thrilled to have the opportunity to judge this outstanding boy again and I have never seen him look better. Although I have admired him for so long, he wasn’t on top form last time I judged him. Gorgeous from any angle, today he looked absolutely stunning, catching my eye immediately, exuding quality and breed type and he pulled out all the stops in this class and later in the challenge for the top award. At seven years, he proves the longevity of our breed. Looking fully mature, with great depth and spring to ribs and so well constructed throughout, with complimentary angulation front and rear, allowing him such freedom in effortless, stylish movement and accurate footfall, also putting his all into his performance today. Maintained his clean, classic outline on the move, with dead level topline and correctly carried tail, head held well on a clean neck of good length. He stands on the best of feet and has legs of correct length, with super bone and pasterns, all topped off with a lovely, masculine head of good proportions and with such a kind and gentle eye and expression. In the peak of condition, of perfect weight, so well-muscled and presented to perfection, with his glorious pale cream coat, of correct texture, immaculate and totally at one with his expert, sensitive handler. It was my absolute pleasure to award him the CC, his third, amidst rapturous applause and, subject to KC confirmation, his full Champion title, this boy having previously proved himself in the field too. Many Congratulations to his owners/breeders.
2) Trinder’s Sh Ch Thornywait San Valentino JW ShCM. Another top quality exhibit. Appealed for his proportions and balance and looking spot on today, another proving what a long-lasting breed Goldens are. Such a pleasing head, with soft expression. Flows so well from nose to tail, with muscular neck of good length, leading to a strong topline and correct tail set. I especially admire his body proportions, short coupled and with plenty of heart room. Just right in fore and rear angulation and another with great bone, legs feet and pasterns, both front and rear. Sound as a pound on the move. A most lovely picture, completed with impeccable presentation of his profuse cream coat and super handling.
3) Younie’s Largymore Live To Love You ShCM
Vintage (4) 1) Gray’s Knockothie Fairway. Hard to believe this ever-youthful lad is over 10 years. He maintains the clean outline of a dog half his years and presents a most pleasing picture of masculinity, quality and balance, also with excellent profile movement. First judged him as a very young puppy and fulfilled his early promise. A delightful kind head and dark eye, set on such a clean, muscular neck, which flows so well to his good layback of shoulder and great topline. Well ribbed and good depth to body. Correct bone for his size. Strength in well angulated hindquarters. Beautifully presented and handled.
2) Warden’s Eyevalley Macallan Of Glentochty ShCM VW. At 12 years a credit to his owner, covering the ground so well, in fit condition, carrying just the right amount of weight. Although not in his best bib and tucker today, his sound conformation could easily be seen. He has a delightful, expressive head with the kindest of eyes, correct in skull width and shape, complimented by a super muzzle of good depth and length. Clean in neck and a good topline. Well boned, neat feet and strong pasterns, with well let down hocks. Handled to advantage.
3) Beck’s Bluebraes Baltimore Jack JW
Special Working (4) 1) Savage’s Ch/Ir Sh Ch Weisford Guilty As Sin (ATC AY13973IKC). Another from the top drawer, there is so much to admire on this masculine exhibit, and he cannot fail to impress, with his classic, clean outline. He exudes confidence, is shown in fit, hard condition and is so visibly keen to please his handler. He has a delightful head, super proportions and skull shape, with a soft expression, well set on a clean neck, which flows into a firm, level topline. His front and rear assemblies complement one another and I was impressed by his short-coupled body with good depth and spring to ribs. Standing on feet of correct shape and with super straight forelegs, his pasterns are first class too. Moved with the desired forward reach and with propulsion in the rear and his lovely mid gold coat was beautifully presented. He was in close contention for the RCC, just felt that today he lacked a little in furnishings around his rear quarter area, in such hot competition for the top spots.
2) Maynard’s Ch Chinnordale Cue Card JW. Sire of 1 and although they are different in proportions, they share many of the same attributes. He too has the most beautiful head with a really kind expression, dark eye and pigment. An excellent reach of neck leading cleanly to his level topline and good tail set. Masculine and mature with plenty of heart room, His construction allowed for freedom of movement. First class presentation and handling.
3) Cornyjova’s Cro Ch One Honey Bunny Rusty Love (ATC BA39994CZE)
MP (4) 1) Bardossey’s Dewmist Dream Weaver (ATC BA16561SWE) BPD. Impressed by this outstanding youngster, who has all the breed essentials and is an exciting prospect for the future. I thought his head delightful, correct shape, masculine, without being overdone and with an endearing expression, enhanced by really dark eyes and superb pigment. Holds himself so well and a great rapport with his expert handler. His really sound construction front and rear, enabled him to cover the ground easily and with style and he was so well balanced at his tender age, of almost 9 months. Superb reach of neck, level topline and a great tail set. Standing on super legs, feet and with the best of pasterns, a lovely picture completed with his pale coat so immaculately presented. Delighted to award him Best Puppy Dog.
2) Greig’s Steval Aglow With Cranngarry. When this youngster relaxes, he presents a clean outline and his conformation can be clearly seen. At almost 8 months, he is developing well, though needs hands on examination to appreciate his virtues at this stage.
Moderate all through and short coupled, he has ample bone for his size, straight forelegs and good feet, a topline that is correct and a decent reach of neck. He has a mischievous look about his head and jet-black pigment. A lovely, well presented mid gold coat and shown sympathetically.
3) MgGugan’s Westlow The Legend Of Fingal To Invergoil Culzean
P (8) 1) repeat of MP, Dewmist Dream Weaver
2) Boorsma & Stuit’s Londonite Verse Chorus Verse (ATC BA81418NLD) RBPD. A quality puppy who could not be denied, despite his handler’s inexperience. So much to commend this promising boy, who caught my eye, as the class moved around the ring for the first time, where he covered the ground freely, as a result of overall sound construction. A most pleasing head of correct proportions, with dark eye and super pigment. Well bodied. his weight was just right and he was shown in fine bloom. I wish this partnership well; more experience will enhance him further. So pleased to be able to award him the Reserve Best Puppy Dog award.
3) Webster’s Kulawand Skies Of Blue Over Benjcroft
J(8,1) 1) Black’s Bencoe Just In Time Del Avrain. Looking just right at 16 months and with much to commend, this glamorous, pale coated youngster of substance, is masculine through and through, without being overdone. Impressed for his leg length and he has a super, clean outline, is well boned, with neat feet and correct pasterns, front and rear. A muscular neck leads to a firm topline and good tail set. His conformation allowed for the required forward reach and ground covering stride. A strong head, though with pleasing expression, dark eye and pigment. Appears just a tad long at this stage, future body development will enhance. Beautifully presented and he has a lovely bond with his handler.
2) Tait’s Strathlon Here Comes The Sun. Sound and accurate on the move, this boy is totally without exaggeration. On the stack, he gives his handler a hard time, trying to pull back into himself and when relaxed there is much to admire. He has the most delightful head, with such a kind expression, dark eye and great pigment. A level topline, so well bodied, with good depth and spring to ribs and short coupled. He stands on good legs and feet and is well boned. Balanced in angulation, though couldn’t quite match the angles of the winner. His handler did a great job and he was presented in first class coat and condition.
3) McAleese’s Toseland Rolls Royce
Y (9,2) 1) Liggins And Hodges’ Silver Passion Glam Fashion At Nunsbrook JW (Imp Deu).
I was drawn to this glamorous youngster on first sight, as I viewed the class, and he did not disappoint on closer examination, with his super construction, and most appealing outline. He is so well coordinated and proportioned with legs of good length, complimented by his well-developed body properties, being well ribbed and strong in loin. His neck flows so well into a super topline and he is really well angulated front and rear, without being exaggerated. Straight forelegs, with bone to match his build. A pleasing masculine head. Covered the ground accurately, on an even and free stride, with well carried tail. Beautifully presented and quietly handled.
2) Bencoe Just In Time Del Avrain
3) Gargan’s Siagar Sinatra
M (4,1) 1) O’Gorman’s Berrymeade Billy Summers (AI). Reserve in Puppy. Most attractive youngster, almost ten months and with a super outline. He can tend to push back into his shoulders, affecting the appearance of his forehand, which is well built with good layback and upper arm, with forechest evident. Moderate length of neck into a topline that is strong and level, with strength in his short loin. Good leg length and super firm, round feet. Fantastic pigment and dark eyes. Just needs to develop slightly more stifle angulation, which should come with time. So well handled throughout and beautiful rich gold coat, presented impeccably. Maintained his topline as he steadily and soundly covered the ground.
2) McGugan’s Westlow The Legend Of Fingal To Invergoil Culzean. 3rd in MP. A sturdy, well grown pup, with a most pleasing head, with well-shaped eyes, great pigment and a melting expression. He has good leg length and is well boned. Neck looks a tad short but again, he tends to push back into his frame. So well bodied, with strength in correct pasterns front and rear and with good spring of rib at just 8 months. So attentive to his sympathetic handler and moved soundly. Everything just needing to come together, which it should with time. Lovely coat and condition.
3) Warden’s Holinbrae Zoom Time At Glentochty 4th in MP.
N (6) Fyfe’s Bluebraes Highland Fling. This lad is moderate in every respect and presents a most pleasing picture of soundness. A most delightful head, just right in skull shape and such an adorable expression, with that desire to please from his well-shaped eyes. He so enjoyed himself in the ring, moved very soundly, covering the ground, maintaining his topline and I was amazed to learn this was his first show, as he looked so much at home, a credit to his owner. Super angulation and a really strong second thigh, he was nicely boned with tight feet and a short-coupled body, showing well sprung ribs. Immaculately presented mid gold coat of good texture.
2) Pratt’s Rosyth Keltic Lord. VHC in Puppy. A well-proportioned pup with an attractive, well-shaped head, super dark eye and excellent pigment. He is well boned and has compact feet of correct shape. Good leg length and short coupled. Although he is balanced in angulation, he could do with a tad more both front and rear, which could well come with age. In between coats today, though well-presented and very attentive to his handler.
3) Steval Aglow With Cranngarry. 2nd in MP.
Tyro (5,1) 1) Berrymeade Billy Summers (AI)
2) Rosyth Keltic Lord
3) Steval Aglow With Cranngarry
UG (5,1) 1) Siagar Sinatra. 3rd in Yearling. A quality youngster, well balanced. Although on first look he appears a tad heavy in front, closer examination under his coat reveals super fore and rear assemblies, with ample forechest. His short-coupled body further enhanced by being well ribbed, with plenty of heart room. His head is well proportioned with good length and depth to muzzle, a delightful expression and great pigment. Certainly, enjoying himself, handled expertly and his pale cream coat was presented in super bloom.
2) Williams’ Berrymeade Kilternan Of Busheyhall. Plenty of scope on this young man and at just over two years, he is developing well. Most attractive head and soft expression. A super forehand, with good layback of shoulder and corresponding upper arm, with legs well placed under his body, allowed for ample forward stride. His clean, reachy neck flows into a firm, level topline. Good leg length and depth to his short-coupled body. Maturity should enhance his many attributes further and strengthen his hindquarters, as his rear pasterns are a tad long. Most appealing in coat and condition and so well handled. Close up to the winner.
3) Rosyth Keltic Lord
G (11) 1) Kipps’ Wheatcroft Rainbow. A spectacular outline and he presents a symmetrical, active and powerful appearance, with super leg length and general proportions. At just two years, looks so balanced. Excellent forehand construction and corresponding bend of stifle, with good second thigh. Clean, muscular neck smoothly leading to a text book topline and good tail set. In the peak of condition and beautifully presented and handled, carrying perfect weight and with ample depth and spring to ribs. Super pasterns front and rear. A strong, masculine, expressive head with dark eye and pigment. Simply eats up the ground in profile, with smooth, free strides.
2) Bencoe Just In Time Del Avrain
3) Williams’ Berrymeade Coeur Blimey At Busheyhall SGWC
PG (6,2) 1) Copley’s Monchique Dragonheart For Emmabe JW. How this chap has come on since I judged him two years ago. Really appealed here, as he presents a lovely clean and balanced outline, where his neck leads seamlessly to a strong and level topline and good tail set. Still a youngster at just over three years, his best is yet to come and he is developing so well. Such a delightful head, masculine and yet retaining the desired soft expression with excellent pigment. His bone fits his frame and he stands on feet of correct shape. Scored in movement, his sound conformation enabling an effortless stride in profile, maintaining his outline. Presented beautifully, in prime condition, his mid gold coat so attractive, and handled to full advantage.
2) Cooper’s Amilone Corsendonk At Dikeadaze (AI). Another to have come on since I last judged him, looking more balanced today. Masculine appearance and well boned. He appealed on the move, where he was sound and moved freely, his complimentary angles giving him reach and drive. He shows good depth and spring to ribs and his length is spot on. A lovely dark eye but I preferred the head of 1, as he is a tad heavy in skull for me and lacks the desired chiselling.
3) Towers, Henderson and Bolano’s Grey Goose November Rain (Imp Esp)
ML (11, 1) 1) Layland’s Applecote Hearts Desire. I was most impressed by this lad, who caught my eye, on first look around the ring, for his striking outline and proportions. His head is so well chiselled, with a soft and kind expression, lovely dark eye and pigment. Straightest of forelegs and neat feet. Clean, muscular neck leading so well to good shoulder layback and he has an equally good upper arm and corresponding rear. Super, short hind pasterns. A cracking topline and tailset, totally held whilst moving. Excellent body properties and carrying ideal weight. Scored in freedom of movement, covering the ground so smoothly both fore and aft and his beautiful mid gold coat, with waves, was presented perfectly, completing the picture. Handled to full advantage and in a close-run contest, I was delighted to award him the RCC, his good forechest clinching the award.
2) Ogilvie’s Linirgor Play My Song For Glenbuie. This boy filled my eye, with his classic make and shape and superb outline, excelling in body properties, being short coupled and with desired spring and depth to ribs and with strength in well angulated hindquarters and developed second thigh. Combines substance with masculinity and has the best of bone, legs, feet and pasterns, front and rear. Carrying just the right amount of weight, superbly presented, with a gorgeous cream coat of good length and texture. His most pleasing expression and dark eye completes the picture and he was handled so sympathetically. Sound and steady on the move. Just preferred the forehand of 1.
3) Warden’s Noblemoon Tak The High Road To Glentochty
L (16, 3) 1) McShane & Laidlaw-Good’s Fhairmhor Haud Yer Wheesht At Rigerin. Scored for his overall soundness and balance, at just over five years presents a picture of maturity and masculinity. His rich gold coat was beautifully presented and what a showman he is, with ever wagging tail and great bond with his clever handler. He moved freely and happily, striding with reach and drive, maintaining his outline, with level topline and tail held perfectly. So well developed in body, short coupled and with good spring to his deep ribs. Strong in second thigh and with good feet, pasterns and well let down hocks. Appealing in head, with just enough stop, dark eye and pigment. Another contender for the RCC.
2) McShane’s Rigerin Gonnae No Dae That. I was told afterwards that this boy had never met his skilled handler before today, which I certainly wouldn’t have known, as he was happy throughout and showed really well. He needs hands on examination to appreciate his qualities fully and underneath his beautifully presented, profuse, mid gold coat, lies a dog who is well constructed front and rear. A strong, masculine, well proportioned, expressive head. Super straight forelegs and well-shaped feet. Ribs have good spring and depth. Scored in movement, sound, positive and free.
3) Trinder’s Thornywait Ruffino
O (13, 1) What a fabulous class, with every exhibit having many attributes and causing me some tough decisions 1) Copley’s Sh Ch Monchique Imperial Beau At Emmabe JW Ir Jun Ch. Had to be special and on top form to win this superb class. Oozes quality, looking the picture of balance, with his good leg length, short coupled, well ribbed, deep body and complimentary angles. He is completely unexaggerated, combines substance with masculinity and possesses strength in his level topline, with a well-set tail. Moderate length to clean neck and with super layback of shoulder. Straight, well boned forelegs and neat feet, with correct pasterns front and rear. Most appealing in head, with a soft expression. Moved so well, maintaining his topline and tail carriage as he covered the ground. So close for the RCC. Beautifully presented and handled.
2) Kipps’s Sh Ch Cadwst Flash Flame to Wheatcroft. One of my favourites and what a career he has had thus far. My RCC last time I judged, and he so impressed again, although I just felt his mind wasn’t quite on the job today. I so admire his quality, free flowing lines and superb outline, so well put together and with super sweep of his reachy neck into his wonderful topline and tail set. Bone just right for his size and with such neat feet. His movement has a fluidity about it, showing real forward reach and drive behind. Masculine head with a pleasing eye. Presented to perfection and expertly handled.
3) Grainger’s Sh Ch Amilone Flintstone. Completed a trio of outstanding dogs.
Sp Open (3,1) 1) Noblemoon Tak The High Road To Glentochty. 3rd in ML. He has the most lovely head with such a soft expression and kind eye. Excels in bone, legs and feet, with superb pasterns front and rear. A clean neck and sound topline. Good development in rear quarters and mature in body properties, being well ribbed. He covered the ground soundly and with drive behind. So attentive to his handler and his luxurious rich gold coat was well presented.
2) Largymore Live To Love You ShCM. 3rd in Veteran and a boy I have previously admired. He is so representative of his breeding and at almost 9 years, appears ever youthful in general appearance and he was shown in fine bloom and condition. Such a kind and gentle head of correct proportions, well set on a clean, muscular neck. Carrying just the right amount of weight, short coupled and so well ribbed. He too stands on great legs and feet with ample bone. A lovely bond with his sensitive handler.
Sp Breeders (No entries)
Fiona Thurm (Judge)