PROMINENT YELLOW FIELD TRIAL KENNELS
by Mrs Jo Coulson
Although from the outset of Labrador field trialling blacks have been dominant, the early yellow kennels did achieve some successes. The first ever yellow to be successful was Mr. F Straker's Angerton Rust, winner of the Northumberland All-Aged Stake in 1910. Up to 1923 very few yellows had gained entry into the Kennel Club Stud Book by virtue of their field trial achievements (in 1922 there were only three Stud Book qualifiers). In 1923 the position began to improve and in 1924 when the Yellow Labrador Club was formed there were already a number of established yellow kennels. Lord Helmsley's Nawton Kennel, Mrs. Wormald (Knaith) and Major Radclyffe (Zelstone) all achieving some successes. The Folkingham Kennel of Dr. Stanton dominated the scene in the late 1920's with a very strong team. Major Lucas' Hawkesbury Kennel was also producing good winners both on the bench and at field trials. The great honour of owning the first yellow Field Trial Champion however, fell to Mrs. P. Stewart, her FT. Ch. Haylers Defender, bred by Mrs. Stocker in ] 924, won his title in 1926 and in 1927 won a C. of M. at the Retriever Championship. Mrs. Wormald's Knaith Kennel gained in strength during the late 1920' s and early 1930' s producing five open stakes winners in FT. Ch. K Brock, K Bolt, K Busby, K. Banok ,and K. Bent. Brock actually won five open stakes.
FT Ch Haylers Defender. The first yellow Field Trial Champion
A major yellow achievement came in 1934, when Mr Gold’s FT Ch Sienna, born in 1933 (FT Ch Haylers Defender ex Sun Up) was placed third in the Championship, she was also placed third in 1936. In 1935 and again in 1938 Mrs. M. Macpherson's FT. Ch. Braeroy Ruddy achieved the same placing. These successes were surpassed, however, in 1938 when Mr. R. Heaton's FT. Ch. Cheveralls Amber won equal first. Amber, born in 1936 was sired by Grey Plover ex Ketton Vanilla (a Ch Badgery Richard daughter). In 1938 she was the top winning Labrador in field trials with a total of four open stake wins.
The Braeroy Kennel of Mrs. Macpherson came into prominence in the 1930 era. Her first FT. Champion, Braeroy Roe, bred by Mr. Goodwill, was born in 1927 (Western Reiver ex Ashdale Primrose); she won her first open stake in 1929 and gained her title in 1931. Roe was the granddam of the remarkable FT. Ch. Braeroy Ruddy, (bred by Mrs. Wilson in 1932, by Braeroy Rab ex Braeroy Randy). Ruddy started her career in 1935 and ended the successful season by winning third place in the Championship. She continued to win well in 1936, 1937 and 1938 and ended 1938 by again achieving third in the Championship. She won a total of six open stakes. Trials were not held during the war years, but in 1946, when they were resumed, it was another Braeroy bitch which came to the fore. FT. Ch. Braeroy Fudge, owned by Mr. Hallett, gamekeeper at Windsor, went through to top honours when she was placed second in the Championship.
Major A. Wormald with a group of Knaith yellows. (Dual Ch. K Banjo seated far left).
Third to Fudge in the 1946 Championships was a dog set to achieve a very special place in yellow history. Staindrop Saighdear, born in 1943 by Glenhead Jimmy ex Our Lil, bred by Sgt. J. Dewer and owned by Mr. E. Winter, became a Dual Champion in 1947, the first of his colour to achieve this distinction. Later a Knaith dog joined Saighdear at the pinnacle of achievement by becoming the second yellow Dual Champion. Knaith Banjo born in 1946, like all the Knaith dogs was trained and handled by his owner breeder, Mrs. Wormald. During his career Banjo won approximately 40 field trial awards as well as 13 Challenge Certificates. In every way genuine Dual Champion, and sadly, the last the breed has been able to produce.
Mrs. Radclyffe's Zelstone yellows have consistently maintained a very high standard of performance at field trials and good, winning yellows have come from other kennels, including Whatstandwell, Nazeing, Veraton and Brattonsplash.
Dr. W. S. Stanton with Folkingham Speedy (1929).
At the Yellow Labrador Club Trials in 1930, where she won the puppy stake.