Field Trialing in France Spring Trials 2016
I traveled to France when Atos was a year old to gain experience in Spring Trials for myself and my Dog. I spent time with my son and his girlfriend who were studying abroad for college and had a wonderful trip. I also traveled with Clint LaFary and his family.
Field Trialing in France 2016
I ran Atos in his first trial in Europe at Ribemont, France under the honorable judge Jean Francois Maillet. It was a memorable event. He ran hard with a lot of passion and covered the grounds well and locked up on point 30 seconds into the run. I produced a large hare for him and when we started back Atos went into the woods not to be brought back easily, and I heard something along the lines of a death sqeal by I suppose that hare. I expected him to retrieve the poor animal to hand, but he came back shortly without. I'm convinced I was already disqualified, but the judge indulged me for a few more minutes before he busted a couple with a nice stop to flush and that was surely the end of the day.
We were able to run Atos in four more trials including Coolus, Pontfaverger, Fontaine Fourches and Nurlu. Clint and I would alternate days of handling Atos or apprenticing with French judges if we were not handling the dog. We had some close calls for classification but Atos was too eager and inexperienced to pull it off. Once trial at Pontfaverger he actually pointed the partridge and did everything perfect, but I never saw the flush and did not shoot. That was a very disheartening run for me personally.
In addition to trialing our little group had the pleasure to visit Normandy and the D-Day beaches. We were able to enjoy some excellent seafood. And, we were able to visit Gold and Omaha beaches. We visited the American museum and were able to go down to the beaches and run Atos on the sacred grounds where so many from America's greatest generation sacraficed their lives for our freedom. It was a visit that brought a feeling of reverence and a sense of peace and at the same time raised goosebumps and sent a chill up my spine.