Dutch in 2011.
This year, the Bradford Ch. Show (or whatever it is called
nowadays) kindly hosted the DCC Northern Winter Show. Kim Holmes did the
honours and an entry of 22 Dutch was received. Unfortunately, the quality was
rather mixed and several exhibits were sent off No Award. Considering that the
entry fees and admission charges for this prestigious show are quite high, it
is rather surprising that some exhibitors did not take the trouble to check
with the breed standard and realise that it is a waste of time showing Dutch
with coloured toenails or with stops running over the hock.
At the other end of the scale, some quality exhibits were on
view with Amy Heale taking the first three places in the Grand Challenge. Her
lovely adult Chocolate sow took top honours. It was good to see some new
members exhibiting with Mr P & Mrs E. Smethurst (Dutch rabbit people also?)
doing quite well in the Red classes and Nathan Evison ensured that the juvenile
classes were not wanting of support.
April saw the Yorkshire Cavy Club Championship Show, Keighley
attracting an entry of 527 exhibits. Included in this total were 37 Dutch for
Chris Pearson to sort out in the DCC Northern Spring Show classes. Having bred
a half decent baby in early February, I was anxious to enter the show.
Admittedly, he was less than the recommended twelve weeks old but he was by no
means the smallest youngster on view. The experience obviously did him no harm
as, at his next appearance on the show table, the Real London Show as an intermediate (5/8 mths old) he was sent off
'OD' by Amy Heale. This was quite understandable on the grounds of size and
nail length but I'd entered early when he was only six and a half months old
and it was his birth date rather than development that was in my mind when
making out the entry.
If this admission is frowned upon, I would add that I am not
an advocate of very young pigs being shown but if sales stock is allowed in
pens at eight weeks, I'd have thought a one day event for a well
grown youngster of nine to ten weeks should do no harm. Of course, I don't flog a pig round the shows
week after week and, at that tender age; it's a once only occurrence.
The overall quality of stock at Keighley was good,
particularly in the adults that took all four places in the Grand Challenge.
For once Amy Heale had to be content with her Chocolate and Red exhibits taking
the lower placings as Best Dutch went to Crazy Cavies with their Black boar
that had won so much the previous year.
During May, the Kent Cavy Club entertained the DCC Southern
Area Show with Kevin Lidbetter behind the table doing the honours. Whilst the
entry could have been bigger, most colours were represented although Cream
Agouti Dutch have been conspicuous by their absence throughout the year. On his
home ground, Gary Clark did very well taking Best Dutch and the top two places
in the Grand Challenge with his adult Red boar and sow. Two other Kent
residents took the other places with Madelaine Coomber's Chocolate Agouti
taking third and Palace Cavies the Reserve spot with a Silver Agouti Dutch.
Julie Davies broke this spell of localism by exhibiting the Best 5/8months
entry (Silver Agouti) and also the Best u/5months with a Red sow that greatly
impressed Kevin on colour. It was the
product of Tim Brock's experiment of crossing his Dutch with a Self Red that
Julie is now progressing and the venture has certainly borne fruit.
At Birmingham in July for the Midland Area Show, it was Gary
Clark's turn to be behind the table and members supported him on his debut with
a good entry of 49 Dutch. The show saw the emergence of another good pig from
the Sarah Stribley stable; a really nice 5/8 months Red boar and it duly took
top honours on the day from the adult Blacks of Wilmot Goldsworthy and Crazy
Cavies with another Sarah Stribley exhibit (u/5mths Red) taking the Reserve
card. There was a good mix of colours at the show including the rare appearance
of a Lilac Dutch (Stuart Inch) that received some favourable comments from the
judge. In the Agouti classes, Palace Cavies, Silver sow and Madelaine Coomber's
Chocolate sow were both felt worthy of special mention.
On the day, Gary had some difficult decisions to make and
often things boil down to a matter of opinion. In this respect, he must be
admired for having a mind of his own, acting as he felt right and, as such,
fully deserves our support.
The South West Area Show in August saw Sue Hearn behind the
judging table who I believe has some experience judging rather bigger animals. Only a small entry of 23 Dutch but, what was
short in numbers, was made up in quality with some smart exhibits on view. This
time Sarah and Wilmot reversed placings with the winning adult Black sow taking
Best Dutch over the best 5/8 months Red with third place in the Grand Challenge
being taken by the winning youngster, a very taking Red sow from Kevin
Hopkins. After only a few years in the
Dutch fancy, Kevin is now starting to make a mark but it is not surprising
considering his pedigree!! It must be in the blood as he is the grandson of
that eminent South West fancier and judge of yesteryear, Gordon Tremeer.
September saw the very first Real London Show attract a fantastic entry of 840 pigs including 63
Dutch. Although, I suspect several
southern fanciers consider this show the be the REAL London Show, the show was
actually named by a fancier with seemingly football interests i.e. Real London as in Real Madrid. I suppose that is fairly relevant as I've recently
learnt that the Reading F.C. are known as the Reading Royals and the London connection
to the Reading region is endorsed by the fact that the London Irish Rugby Club
are based in the area.
Anyway, back to the pigs and the DCC Margaret Elward Memorial
Show that was being entertained with Madelaine Coomber doing the honours. Most
colours were on view with, surprisingly, the biggest breed class being the
Adult Silver Agouti class of seven.Palace Stud took the honours here and they are particularly strong in
this colour. Of the less numerous colours, the Cinnamon Agoutis shown by Maggie
& John McKay and Julie Davies took Madelaine's eye and she was also
impressed by the Creams being shown by Alan Wilson. Top honours though went to
Amy Heale with her noted adult Chocolate sow with Sarah Stribley in close
attendance with her consistent 5/8 months Red boar. This time, Wilmot
Goldsworthy took third place in the Grand Challenge with a 5/8 months Black
sow. Kevin Hopkins was again winning with his young Reds (both boar and sow
doing well) but both were touched off for Best Youngster by another smart Chocolate
from Amy Heale.
In October, the Dutch Cavy Club did support the London (at
Peterborough) Championship Show with a Points Show but the show, like the
venture of points shows away from DCC stock/area shows, was not well supported
and the subsequent AGM in November decided that the arrangement be scrapped for
2012. Hopefully, the London at Peterborough event will be a less acrimonious
affair in future and I see that the National Cavy Club will be staging a
specially sanctioned show there next October. It will be a Midlands Area Show and the clue to my objections to this particular 'London' event is in the title of the show being entertained. It's all a
question of location and nothing else.
Our final stock show for 2011 was the Annual Stock Show at
Worth Valley Fanciers' venue in Oxenhope on 5th November. The entry
of only 28 Dutch for Stuart Inch to sort out was rather disappointing being
made up of 17 adults, 9 5/8 months and 2 youngsters. This was surprising
considering so many trophies were up for competition and another surprise was
the fact that not a single adult made the Grand Challenge placings. Best Dutch
went to Kim Holmes with her 5/8 months Golden Agouti with the winning
youngster, a Black from Crazy Cavies taking the runner up spot. Kevin Hopkins
was again prominent, taking third place in the Grand Challenge with his
5/8months Red and the young Chocolate from Karen Binks (a new name to me) took
the Reserve place. For the record, a Black sow shown by Brian Leiper took Best
Adult. I suspect this was the first Scottish success at a DCC show for many a
year; if not the initial one.
The 2012 Dutch Cavy Club show programme kicks off early with
the South West Area Show being held at Lytchett Matravers (Wessex C.C.) on
Sunday, 26th February 2012. Peter Gammie will very kindly be doing
the honours and I hope that the year can get off with a really good entry.
Remember the shows and the Club are only as good as your support.