JUDGE RICHARD TURNER
EDMONTON, ALBERTA, CANADA
Firstly, I would like to pass on the Spaniel Community’s and my own best wishes for a speedy recovery to Judge Jim Paul. I know that the honor of this assignment is tremendous, and Jim was looking forward to seeing the best Spaniels that Canada and the US can produce!
Similarly to Judge Paul McGaugh, I also grew up in the North of England, around the farming communities in that area. Paul’s statements about life there are most accurate and anybody interested in shooting needed to foster relationships with landowners, shoot operators and gamekeepers. My fathers business took him into a wide area of rural communities in Northeast England and as a result, I was able to secure some rough shooting permission. Truly a great environment for working dogs of all types!
Immigrating to Alberta, Canada in 1981 with my wife Beverley, I actually stopped hunting for some years. The rules here were very different and I was afraid of getting it wrong. I was reintroduced to Spaniels some twenty years ago and through the mentoring talents of people like Ray Nault and Liam Heritage became hooked on the trailing game. Along with that of course was the opportunity to start hunting again.
My first two Spaniels turned out to be most suitable for hunting, although in the hands of someone with greater experience, my second dog may have had a better chance in the trialing game. I then acquired a third dog, Lacey, as a pup and went on to be very successful with her in Trials. We still hunted extensively after the Trial season was over. So having run dogs in the National’s over the years and met a wide range of dog people, I am now looking forward to seeing this competition from a different aspect.
I wish all handlers the best of luck and look forward to seeing many old friends and making new acquaintances.
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