As there was a weekend gap in the Irish Kennel Club summer schedule because Dundalk did not take place, the board decided to run an IKC Summer Show at the National Show Centre at Cloghran to fill the slot. With a panel of local judges, they were rewarded with an entry of 1,119 in the breed classes, supplemented by obedience and agility, bringing the numbers up to 1,226.
Extra encouragement to enter was the creation of a new title, that of veteran champion, to be won on the day by the best veteran dog and bitch graded excellent, though from the next show on, the qualification for veteran champion can only be attained with five wins from veteran class at championship shows with an excellent grading; the junior title was also won outright on the day by the winners of the junior dog and bitch classes graded excellent, though this was a little contentious as this award has been on the go for some years now, and some folk who have travelled far and wide to win their normally required five class wins were slightly miffed that a dog could win at just one show and get their junior crown. However, it was great to see so many veterans out on the day and doubtless this will continue to be a feature of our ch shows as there is now a reason to bring back the oldies, and not leave at home dogs who were retired but loved the shows.
The venue was divided inside and out and the IKC were blessed with a lovely sunny day and a great atmosphere outdoors; inside the venue was also laid out with large rings and a spacious BIS ring bedecked with blue and green bunting, initially split into two to allow both stakes and breed classes to proceed.
Gain Petfoods, the IKC sponsor was generous to a fault, with specials to all green star winners up to groups, stakes and BIS, with Sean Martin, Rob and Adrian O’Keeffe and Jim Tracy very much in evidence and representing the company in the photographs. With a 10am start, the stakes finished at 1.30pm, allowing the groups to proceed; these were run in both main rings and a side ring, meaning that BIS was called at just 4.40pm, a good early finish, appreciated as usual by those with a long journey home in front of them.