Results Day 1

Anyone who attended the 2012 International at Redlands Farm, Bonvilston will no doubt recall the field. The same field is being used for the 2017 Wesh National. The land slopes down away from the podium. There is an elbow jutting into the field to the left and beyond it is a small wood. There is a line of trees running down the field to the right of the fetch gates, and a fence has been taken out. The dogs will cross from the grass field, through the gaps in the tress and into the field where the sheep will be set out. This field has been topped and is quite stubbly and rustles as you walk through it. The ground is also quite wet.

The drive is left-handed and a good turn is needed to go into the cross drive. Across the middle of the field the land dips slightly and th ecorrwct line of the cross drive is on the brow. The pen for the singles is to the right of the shedding ring, while the open pen for the brace is situated to the left.

The sheep, Glamorgan Welsh yearlings with a few ewes in the flock, worked well but provided a test. They have been provided by local committee chairman, David Howells.

The sheep will be run again tomorrow and on Saturday.

Some would stand up to a dog and some could be skittish. If there were a reward for restraint, it would go to Aled Owen’s Llangwm Cap who was severely tested at the pen by one particularly stroppy sheep, but quietly stood his ground and forced them in.

The outrun has proved a test with only a couple of handlers opting for the right hand side.

Many handlers have given their dogs an ‘insurance’ whistle at the elbow on the left hand outrun, and lots of dogs have needed extra whistles and re-commands to get them to the sheep. There have been a number who have crossed.

Bringing the sheep up the field on a good fetch line has also been tough, although few have missed the gates.

The drive gates haven’t proved too troublesome, although some packets have been turned too soon at the first drive. Early in the day handlers were looking into the sun on the first drive.

There has been a constant whirr of traffic noise all day from the road on the right hand side of the course.

Cardiff airport is just a few miles away from the site, and planes have been in the skies all day, coming in to land or to take off, but there has been no noise associated with them.

Electricity pylons traverse the landscape and one is situated in the field to the right of the point of lift.

This morning, Glyn Jones, Llanarmon, had a good run with Cap to score 186 and earn a place in the team. He was followed two runs later by brother Alun, who was pushed down to reserve place by the end of the day with Spot on 184. 

In the afternoon Stan Harden went to the top of the leader board with Cass at number 37, scoring 188.

His reign wasn’t long lived, when Kevin Evans and Ace went to the post at number 42. Kevin posted the first score in the 190s – 196 – to win day one.

There were three brace runs today, and the current leader is Elgan Jones running Jim and Joe. They scored 198, a clear lead over JR Griffith and Colin Gordon.

The final three brace runs will be held tomorrow lunchtime.


Today's top five:

1, Kevin Evans, Ace, 196

2, Stan Harden, Cass, 188

3, Arwel Owen, Glenys, 186, OLF 90

4, Glyn Jones, Cap, 186, OLF 84

5, Aled Owen, Llangwm Cap, 184, OLF 84

Reserve, Alun Jones, Spot, 184, OLF 72


Day one winner, Kevin Evans.

PICTURE: Lisa Soar


Kevin and Ace single to take top spot on 196 points.

PICTURE: Lisa Soar


Stan Harden comes off the field smiling having earned a place in the team.

PICTURE: Lisa Soar


Arwel Owen and Glenys take the shed.

PICTURE: Lisa Soar


Elgan Jones running Jim and Joe in the brace.

PICTURE: Lisa Soar


Aled Owen's Llangwm Cap encountered a very difficult sheep at the pen.

PICTURE: Lisa Soar


The view of the 2017 Welsh National trial field.

PICTURE: Lisa Soar


The scene from the bottom of the field at the lift, with the view through the tree line. You can just about make out the fetch gates through the gap.

PICTURE: Lisa Soar