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Irish Wolfhound Club Rally 2009
The Club's annual Rally & Fun Day took place on Sunday May 31st - which turned out to be one of the hottest days of the year. Gazebos, umbrellas and parasols were put to good use for much needed shade, as were the trees which overlooked the events ring.

Hounds and their humans travelled from all parts of the country to join in the fun.

The day began with the usual fun competitions, but the relentless sun's rays and very little breeze, meant that only a few opted to try their paws over the obstacle course. The winner of this was Paddy & Gill Grice's rescue hound Cara. Her Border Terrier companion was also the fastest non-Wolfhound over the course, despite having to have some assistance from Gill with the higher jumps!
Gill, this time with Maeve, was also the eventual winner of the Egg & Spoon race. This year, the competitors had the added complication of having to don a bow tie and clown's nose, half way down the course, without dropping their egg, or losing their dog!

One of the highlights of the day was the parade of some of the hounds, which the Irish Wolfhound Rescue Trust has helped to re-home. This year saw 12 rescue hounds and their proud owners receiving rosettes and goody bags from Jan Pain, the Trust's Secretary. As usual, the commentary was by The Trust's Chairman Jean Malley, who gave us some background information on the hounds
The Veteran Parade followed and it was good to see that some of the rescue hounds also qualified to take part in this. In fact, Carol Hutber's 9 year old Sinead, re-homed via the Rescue Trust three years ago, was the oldest hound present on the day.  
During the lunch break, on behalf of the Club Committee, the Chairman Mr Peter Pask, presented John & Margaret Sherlock with a gift to thank them for their 14 years of dedication organising the Discover Dogs stand at Crufts.

The kitchen helpers worked hard all day, serving drinks and snacks and preparing the delicious buffet lunch. After a mouth-watering choice of desserts, owners and hounds prepared for the Companion Show, which was judged this year by Sue Neal.
Best in Show: Wendy Heather's Grace.
Best Puppy in Show: Paul & Anne Vaudin's Rafferty,
visiting from Guernsey. He melted the judge's heart sufficiently
to also win 'The dog the judge would most like to take home'.
The Novelty Classes were well supported and it was good to see so many people joining in the fun.  Amongst the winners were Sue Wilkinson & Song for Best 6 Legs. Naeem Hussain with Grace won the Best Fancy Dress. Jean Timmins's rescued Lurcher, Tiggy won Best Crossbreed.

Paul Atkinson, and his rescue hound Finn, caused much hilarity winning the ‘Dog most like his owner’ class. Paul also had a nice long tail attached to the back of his trousers!"

There was actually a competition for Longest tail and this was won by Paul & Anne Vaudin's Hogan - his tail measured just over 30". (I think Paul Atkinson's tail might have been longer, but he wasn't eligible, not being an IW himself!)

A few years ago, the Committee decided to introduce an annual competition for 'Dog of the Year', with the winner being chosen at the Rally. This year there were several very worthy entrants, but the decision to choose Jill Stayte's 8 year old Veteran bitch, Jennie, was a very popular one.  
Jill & Jennie receiving their award from Secretary
Dagmar Kenis-Pordham and Chairman Peter Pask.
Many thanks to Kev & to Fiona Cameron, Caroline Sheppard 
and Edita Dobrovolná  for these photos.
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