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British Breed Field Trials

ALTHOUGH TERMED 'BRITISH BREEDS', THESE TRIALS ARE OPEN TO ALL POINTING BREEDS (I.E. BRITISH BREEDS AND HPR BREEDS).

The British breeds trials have a long and rich history in this country and have been the sole domain of the National Field Trial Association under whose auspices the field trials have been run and a breed registry established (previously the South African Field Trial Club registry). The National Field Trial Association (NFTA) currently runs four British Breed trials a year. These trials are run and hosted by the member clubs throughout SA in the Western Cape, Eastern Cape, Free State/Natal, and Mpumalanga, and the winner of each of these trials is designated as a Field Trial Champion (FT Ch). The final trial of the year is the National Championship Trial, in which the top ranked winning dogs from that trial year compete for the ultimate title - that of National Field Trial Champion (Nat FTCh)! The "Nationals" are held yearly and are hosted by a different club in different regions each year.

The awards earned in all of these trials are tabulated and used for ranking purposes for the awarding of the Dog of the Year title and National Colours. The Dog of the Year is the top-ranked dog and National Colours are awarded to the National Championship Winner as well as the top three highest ranking dogs. Those dogs awarded National Colours may represent SA in international events. When dogs from SA have been able to compete in the World Championships, they have done so admirably, but monetary constraints and quarantine restrictions have made it impossible for teams to compete in recent years. We certainly hope that will change soon!


HPR/Continental breed trials

The HPR/Continental breed trials are newer on the scene but are becoming more well-established and well-attended every year. The HPR trials are held under the auspices of the NFTA and can also be conducted under the auspices of the Kennel Union of Southern Africa (KUSA). KUSA is also a breed registry, and caters for all breeds of dogs in this country, not just the working gundogs. Currently, there are four HPR trials run per year in the Western Cape, Natal/Free State and the Limpopo Province. In order for a dog to become an HPR Field Trial Champion, it must win two trials. The awards in these trials, as well as any awards earned in NFTA British breeds trials, are tabulated and the results are used to identify the top-ranking dogs for that trial year. The top-ranking dog in the HPR trials is designated as the KUSA National Dog, and the NFTA HPR Dog of the Year. To date, the HPR breeds have not held a National Championship trial, but that event may be on the cards within the next few years!
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"To watch a fine pointing dog in action, rimming the field edges with a graceful, ground-devouring stride, is to be mesmerised. And to see
it strike point is to witness one of the most breathtaking- and definitive - acts in the universe of sport." Tom Davis
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