Best in Show, as chosen by Judge Seamus Oates (Ireland), was the Bernese Mountain Dog,
Icarus Van’t Stokerybos, owned by Delrue Vandewalle from Belgium.
Mechelen 2011 - hot and sultry!
Notwithstanding the bad summer it was a nice and warm weekend. On Sunday it was even sultry and even talking was enough to start sweating. Funny as it wasn’t even that warm, but it was very humid.
The Nekkerhalls offer good accommodation to organize a dogshow and I think that this influences the success of this show too. The huge parking around is so convenient and appreciated and the space inside is pure luxury. The only bad thing is the awful acoustics, but that is not so important and it is bearable if the sound is not too loud. This show was only 14 days away from the European Dogshow of Leeuwarden but it didn’t seem to affect the entries at all. Exhibitors came from 13 different countries and from as far as Norway, Poland, Denmark, Czech Republic, Italy, Switzerland and 11 from the UK.
The success of a dog show depends mostly from the balanced choice of judges, at least that is my theory. This show is once more a perfect illustration to this. From the 22 judges that were invited there were only six from Belgium, the rest represented ten other countries. Of course Belgian judges should be given the possibility to judge in their own country, certainly if they judge new breeds or are new on the scene. Making a fair chance to win a title is the first thing exhibitors are looking for. In the second place they want different titles and judges to complete their championships and this is not possible if always the same judges are on the panel.
Mechelen has well understood this and made a fine selection and most of the judges were busy to very busy. Mr. Asensi Peinado from Spain was one of them with a nice entry of 111 dogs over the weekend. Mrs Liliane Deridder, one of our all-rounders had a total of 113. On Saturday she had two Belgian Mastiffs to judge. This breed is not yet recognized by the FCI. Mr.Walter Jungblut from Germany scored 141 dogs, 89 on Saturday and 52 on Sunday, when he had 41 Cavalier King Charles Spaniels.One of our new judges, Mr Marc Van de Meutter from Belgium, judged 45 dogs on Saturday only but it was a long time ago since we had 18 Boxers in the ring. Paul Jentgen from Luxemburg is often on term in Belgium. He had 137 dogs in total and especially on Sunday he was busy judging 90 entries.
Hansen Birthe had 105 in total. This good result had to do with the success of the Rhodesian Ridgebacks who were numerous with 42 specimens. Mr Istvan Csik from Germany had a total of 119 breeds, Terriers on Saturday and Companion dogs on Sunday. Mr Nenad Davidovic from Serbia ended with a total of 128 dogs, the 25 Siberian Huskies on Sunday added to this success. The record holder amongst the judges was without any doubt Mrs Cathi Di Giacomo who came from the United States to judge no less than 172 dogs. Her busiest day was Saturday when she judged 95 dogs, 31 Shar Peis and a fabulous number of 64 Great Danes.
She held the day record and the weekend record. A special remark must also go to Mrs Dian Degryze from Belgium who judged on Sunday only, but finished with 82 dogs in her ring, including 44 Chinese Crested dogs, a breed that enjoys an increasing popularity over here. Mrs A.Daoust from France had the breed record. She counted 47 Chihuahua’s in her ring. Mr George Hennessy was invited to judge the 40 Goldens but was replaced by Mr Rudy Feyaerts from Belgium. Mrs Sue Wilkinson, also from the United Kingdom was present on Sunday to judge her 43 entries. Not very much perhaps, but if I tell you there were 24 Dalmatians and 19 Irish Wolfhounds then it sounds already a lot better as these breeds are usually not so strongly represented. Mr Augudin Rodrigues from Spain was also judging on Sunday only, but with 84 entries his invitation was a good investment. He had 37 French Bulldogs, 24 Pugs and 23 Border Collies.
Not the youngest but certainly one of the most experienced judges of the panel is certainly Mr Seamus Oates from Ireland. He was given the honour to give the group winners a last round and examination and pick out the overall winner. His third BIS was the German Shepherd Dog, Henzo Vom Beverenkant, a three year old male that was entered in Open Class under Mr Paul Jentgen. Mr Davidovic sent him later to the finals. Henzo is owned by Luc Van Herwegen from Belgium. Runner up to BIS was the Bichon Frisé, Manoir's Shot In The Dark, entered in Champion Class under Mrs Cathi Di Giacomo and made Group winner by Mrs De Ridder.
Shot is a UK dog, owned by Pauline Johna and is five years old now. BIS was the Bernese Mountain Dog, Icarus van”t Stokerybos, owned by Delrue-Vandewalle. This two year old male is bred and owned by Delrue-Vandewalle at the world famous kennel “van ’t Stokerybos”. He won BOB under judge Palle Hansen from Denmark and BOG under Mrs Liliane Deridder. This young male joins the long list of winning dogs from this kennel and we will certainly hear more of him in the coming years and probably next year again in Mechelen. Find out on the 18th and 19th of August 2012!
Report & Photographs By KARL DONVIL