Best in Show as chosen by Judge M. Tamas Jakkel (Hungary) was the Affenpinscher, Ch Billy Bongo v. Tani Kazari, owned by M. Cooijmans from the Netherlands.
Shortly after the 2010 Golden Trophy Show of Liège a fire destroyed one of the big halls (October), roughly two-fifths of the area. It was far from sure if the show of 2011 would take place and if so where.
There were a few options, pretty far away and more expensive or less practical. It was also possible that the show could take place in the regular hall but it depended on when the works for the reconstruction would start. It was at last announced that it would happen where it used to happen before and from then on it was crossing fingers if it would be plan A or plan B or C. At last plan A was possible.
However, the space would certainly cause problems , but where the burned hall was removed there was a rather big parking area and on the previous VIP parking area tents were placed to compensate the loss of the hall. As if this was not enough, rain would certainly cause a huge problem and as we had a pretty rainy summer nobody would trust the forecast, although it was promising. But except for some little rain on Sunday morning, everything was OK. It was really surprising how inventive the committee was as all the usual Challenges could take place.
Liège has traditionally the 10th edition of the Golden Lead (Handling), The eighth edition of the Golden Groomer, the dog in art, and all the usual entertainment in the main ring.
The main ring was replaced and there were no stairs for the public, but nobody was really bothered. In order to not reduce the size of the rings too much, no cages were available and I had the impression that everybody understood the situation and was pretty happy after all.
Anyway congratulations to the organization for taking the risk, for their courage and for the final result. The main ring was really nice as was the grooming area for the Golden Groomer competition. Compared to last year there were even more entries, 1,728 to the 1,651 of last year. Fifteen different countries were present, even from Denmark and Russia.
Twenty-two Judges officiated this weekend, a very international team representing 15 nationalities. Mr Mrowiec from Poland had a total of 110 over the weekend, Shepherds on Saturday and Group 2 dogs on Sunday. Mr Hlebarov from Bulgaria had 118 entries, the best scoring judge of the weekend. He also judged Shepherds on Saturday but Waterbreeds on Sunday. Mrs Ramune Kazlauskaite from Lithuania had a total of 111. On Saturday she had 19 Dalmatians and 32 Rhodesian Ridgebacks.
On Sunday she did all the Teckels. Mr Van Hoenacker is a Belgian judge. On Saturday he had 64 dogs, 26 of them Border Collies and 31 Collies. StevenSeymour from Australia judged the Poodles, all varieties on Saturday, and a total of 58. Mr Vella from Malta had 115 entries, 62 Terriers, including 30 Amstaffs and 53 entries on Sunday, companion breeds. Mr Rajic from Slovenia had 48 Chihuahuas, who helped him to reach a nice total number of dogs, 114. Best scoring judge per day was Mrs E. Haapaniemi from Finland.
Two popular breeds on Sunday were responsible for the total of 72 dogs, the Newfoundlands (38) and the Leonbergers (23). Remarkable was the unusual high number of 30 Beaucerons who entered to be judged by Mrs Cottet-Grassart from France. They were the only breed she judged. And more than worth mentioning is the big number and record of the weekend for highest entry for one breed, 59 French Bulldogs who turned up for Mr J. F. Vanaken from Belgium. Mrs M. Vermeire judged on Sunday and had also a nice score with 66 entries, 19 Shar Peis, 32 Bulldogs and 15 Tibetan mastiffs.
Mr Tammas Jakkel from Hungary is a very famous and popular judge who has officiated at many World and European Championships. He was granted the honour to judge Best In Show. He had judged Best of Day One and on Saturday he chose the Affenpinscher Ch Billy Bongo V. Tani Kazari owned by M. Cooijmans from the Netherlands. This dog was the choice of judge M. N. Jovanovic from Serbia who judged the Group, while it was in fact Mr Rajic from Slovenia who made him Best of Breed. On Sunday Tamas Jakkel chose the Alaskan Malamute to compete with the Affenpinsher. Ch Equinox Woodvram Polarni Usvit was owned by Sergio Bebiano from the United Kingdom.
Mrs Haapaniemi had judged the breed and chose him as her best from eight others. Later again it was judge Jovanovic who judged the group and gave him the ticket to the finals. After examining and comparing, as far as those two breeds are comparable, Mr Jakkel chose the Affenpinscher. A courageous choice as the Malamute was glamorous and spectacular. This can hardly be said of an Affenpinsher who is more supposed to be funny and to some even ugly. But Billy Bongo was in a way stealing the show as a fantastic specimen of the breed and not to be overlooked.
Next year the new hall will probably be ready and there will be enough room for far more than 2,000 dogs. Note it down in your agenda - 21 and 22 July.
- Best in Show
- Group 1 winner
- Winner of Group 2
- Winner of Group 3
- Group 4 winner
- Winner of Group 5
- Group 6 winner
- Winner of Group 7
- Winner of Group 8
- Group 9 winner
- Winner of Group 10