Report by Pete Garrard
The paddock at the rear of Tim and Margaret’s property at Pimlico on which the event was held had been
mown by both Maggie and Roy, and on the Tuesday after a gloriously sunny Bank Holiday weekend, it
Then on Thursday as most of the caravans were arriving, it threw it down all day!
Roy did a great job of keeping the traffic to one narrow strip down the middle and towed several on with a
4-wheel drive vehicle which kept the field from turning into a sea of mud.
Despite overnight rain and cloudy skies, both days stayed remarkably dry with even some brief spells of
sunshine, but sadly the hoped for crowd of locals and their dogs decided to play safe and stay indoors.
A few hardy souls and dogs of other breeds did turn up to join in the proceedings with the Bernese crowd however, and one Border Collie (who had apparently never tried it before) won the Apple Bobbing hands
down with an incredible 32 apples taken out of the tub in the 2 minutes allowed.
On the Saturday while the “Retrieve a Raw Egg” wasn’t terribly well patronised, the Apple Bobbing,
Scurry, Temptation Alley and the Ring Events were fairly popular and added a reasonable amount to the
overall sum raised. The barbeque was also kept busy with copious amounts of tea and coffee keeping
Sunday was a more relaxed day with a few activity events in the ring - Biscuit Catching (not Cimo’s finest
hour – he sat there and watched the biscuit drop to the ground then picked it up and ate it!)
The Sit / Down / Stand Game and Musical Sits; the last event was a timed Fun Obstacle Course with mini
jumps, a tunnel, score a goal, dressing up, a trampoline, and finishing with firing an arrow with a sucker on
the end at a target.
At the centre of the target was a picture of Tim – hit his nose with the arrow and 5 seconds was knocked
off your time! No-one managed it, despite many tries (including Tim himself !)
The highlight in many respects, however, was the Calamity Carting Course in Whistley Woods. All
competitors used either Elaine’s or Maureen’s converted metal garden cart into which had been placed
an inflated plastic football.
The timed run started between 2 cones at the bottom end of the paddock, went through the gate into the
wood and down a muddy track. At an overhanging bough, the football had to be thrown over the branch,
caught on the other side and placed back in the cart. Any time the football bounced out of the cart, it was necessary to stop and replace it which cost time penalties.
The route continued across a muddy puddle, zig-zagged around 2 small trees, doubled back around a
bigger tree, and then zig-zagged the other way round the two trees. Diverging to the left, the course then
went through a very large, muddy puddle – Tim considered that it wasn’t big enough before we started
and used his JCB to enlarge it - despite this, no-one drowned!
The last leg ran alongside the fence where barring the way across the track was a rope from the fence to
a tree; it was necessary to unhook the rope from the fence, hook it over a branch, pass through with the
dog and cart and then replace the rope on the fence.
The last obstacle to overcome was the weave where each cone had a tennis ball balanced on top.
Even a small touch of the cone would cause the ball to fall off, which resulted in more time penalties while
the ball was replaced. Once dog, cart, football and handler had returned through the gate into the paddock
and passed between two cones, the clock was stopped.
There were several suggestions made for improvements in the future – oxygen and a paramedic on
standby being the most common!
Most times were between 2 and 3 minutes, and the event was won by Dave Wright (aka ‘Britney’) who
completed the course in the staggeringly short time of 1minute 44 seconds.
For my part, my best time was 2 minutes 59 seconds which wasn’t very impressive considering that
despite her having a gammy knee, even Maureen Boutel beat me – probably because of my added
time penalties for the expletives! The dogs were definitely fitter than I was!
We're very grateful to Natural Instinct, who very kindly sponsored the event with Rosettes, Winners
Certificates, and a substantial number of bags of treats, which were extremely well received by
A video compilation of some highlights of the event can be seen on Youtube at the following link;
Despite the weather a very impressive £720 was raised for Bernese Welfare UK and a big vote of
thanks is due to Maggie, Tim, Roy, Glenn and Wendy and all those who took part for all their hard work in
offering, preparing, organising, devising, running and participating in such an enjoyable event.
Here are some more photos taken at the weekend;