Thursday, November 7, 2013

NAMAA Nationals: Conformation Day 2

Sunday's conformation show was judged by Mr. George Bell. For those who don't know George, he is an avid hare courser, and breeder of some very accomplished coursing Greyhounds and Salukis. While George and his late wife started out with Salukis, he is now focused almost exclusively on Greyhounds, particularly the "half and half" variety. A "half and half" as they are affectionately called is a Greyhound that has both NGA and AKC bloodlines in its pedigree. Needless to say, George is more than qualified to judge working sighthounds, and I was excited at the prospect of having him judge our Agars.

I decided to keep things simple and leave all the dogs in the same classes they had previously been entered in. Unfortunately for us, the race track for the LGRA specialties was being setup in plain view of the show ring, and all of our dogs were well aware of what was going on, which made showing them a bit of a challenge to say the least.

Pi being very uncooperative
Photo by Ed Sakai

Pi went into the ring first and was about as cooperative as a bucking bronco. I don't know if that had anything to do with George's choices, but it certainly didn't help.

Gator, Photo by Ed Sakai

Next up were Gil and Gator in Open. The two older gentleman were slightly more composed than Pi, but not much. Between the two, George picked Gil. In addition to coursing his dogs, George enjoys taking them into the show ring on occasion, and he tends to like dogs that are "pretty" as opposed to more rugged types. So, I wasn't surprised that he preferred Gil over Gator, as Gil is definitely more slight of build. Between Gil and his son, George predictably went with Gil.

Peshamba showing off her lovely side gait
Photo by Jairi Rai

Next in the ring was Peshamba. Knowing George's preferences in dogs, I had hopes that he would like her, despite her post-season condition. I was definitely not wrong. Even though Pesh was pretty uncooperative in the ring, he remarked to her owner/handler that he liked her, which gave me hope for at least a Winner's Bitch award.

Luna on the go-around
Photo by Ed Sakai

In Open Bitches, Luna was quite beside herself with the race track being so close by and did not show as well as she has before. Nevertheless, I had a feeling George would prefer Patti over Luna, and I was right. Patti's show performance was greatly improved over what it had been the day before; she was much more relaxed with minimal help from her handler, and when she went around the ring I saw her move like I had never seen her move before. She reminded me a lot of both her mother and father; a seamless blend of both, and I was very proud :-)

Patti getting ready to go around the ring
Photo by Ed Sakai

That pitted the two sisters against each other for Winner's Bitch. As their breeder and "second mother" I would have been happy and proud for either of them to win, but as I had hoped George picked Pesh for Winners Bitch!

Winners Bitch Peshamba
Photo by Ed Sakai

And, last but not least were the Veteran girls, Belle and Fecni. Again, George's choice was pretty predictable, and he went with the prettier Belle over the more rugged Fecni.

Belle, Photo by Ed Sakai

Mama Fecni, Photo by Ed Sakai

That put Gil, Peshamba, and Belle in the ring for Best of Breed. I was so tired by that time not just from going around the ring several times, but also having to handle several uncooperative and strong dogs. In the end, George picked Gil for Best of Breed, which did not surprise me. What I was really waiting for was to see who he would pick for Best Opposite. I felt that both girls stood a good chance of winning, but I was thrilled when he handed the ribbon to Peshamba.

Gil, Best of Breed under George Bell
Photo by Steve Tradewell

Peshamba, Best of Opposite Sex under George Bell
Photo by Steve Tradewell


  1. Look at all these blog posts!!! :-) Congrats on a great Nationals!