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Result: National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity

Location: Harrisville, Pennsylvania

Post Date: Apr 24, 2021

Submitted By: Allen Fazenbaker

Mac's Real McCoy, white and orange pointer male bred, owned, and handled by Tim McClurg of Fowler, Ohio is the 2021 National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity winner.

Futurity Winners

Running in the second brace of the Futurity, McCoy scored two finds in his 30-minute brace, with a bold and forward pace, yet pleasing style to take the win. Mac's Real McCoy is by Mac's Silver Chief ex Mac's Silver Shadow.

Everyone agreed that this Futurity was most enjoyable after a year of cancellations, reschedulings, and upheavals in the field trial world resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. With COVID-19 restrictions easing, everyone enjoyed the opportunity to bring their dogs and reacquaint with old friends. Although some restrictions were still in place at the time of the running, there was optimism that things are improving.

Futurity Secretary Chris Catanzarite secured the judges, birds, and handled all those details that are needed for a successful trial.

In accordance with current Pennsylvania directives, the clubhouse was closed, no communal food was served, and participants were asked to maintain social distancing with their field trial comrades.

Birds were a scarce commodity this year, and club members scrambled to obtain sufficient birds for the weekend events. But, after all was done, a good weekend of running bird dogs was realized.

This thirty-first reunion of the National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity was contested at the grounds of the Oak Ridge Pointing Dog Club in Harrisville Pennsylvania. Western Pennsylvania has been a bastion of walking Shooting Dog competitors for many years; its central location to many prime hunting areas, notably for grouse and woodcock, has fostered a long history of walking dogs. The pandemic had an impact on the number of derbies entered this year, with only 11 Futurity entries presented for judicial review.

A nice entry of puppies and a good entry of shooting dogs complemented the weekend entries and made for a nice trial.

This was the seventh year hosting the National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity for the Oak Ridge Pointing Dog Club; the grounds are a wide expanse of open fields, interspersed by spotty wooded areas, notably in the bottoms. These grounds are rolling and open, being the end result of strip mine reclamation many years prior. A dog can be seen for a ways on these grounds, and so must have good ground application and style to catch the eye of the judge.

The half-hour course utilized for this event broke away at the heavy cable gate and traveled west along a wide expanse of open gently rising grassy fields and feed strips, cresting at a small grove of woods, and then dropping into the valley on the western boundary. The course then gently curved clockwise into the open valley, following an edge, where the course crossed a drainage ditch, passing a small hummock, continuing north and then looping slowly to the east, following a woodsline along the northern ridge of the reclaimed strip mine. After crossing a small creek flowing from the wooded section on the northeast portion of the property, the course entered an open field interspersed with small bushes and other objectives, then turned south at a small pond fondly referred to as the "Regis Pond," and followed the southern edge of the field, to end at the observation deck.

The National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity Association is grateful to the Board of the Oak Ridge Pointing Dog Club for their willingness to host this prestigious event. The grounds were in excellent shape this year, thanks in part to warm weather conditions the previous month that had permitted some flush of new growth, but not excessive. Officers of the National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity thanks all those who entered their dogs and for supporting this important walking breeder's stake.

Futurity judges are especially critical to the success of this sport, as they must judge the promise of potential champions. This year's selection of judges represented a vast amount of experience in running, breeding, and training Walking Shooting Dogs. Our Futurity judges and Puppy judges this year were Dave Park from Uniontown, Pa., and Eric Munden from Philipsburg, Pa. The Shooting Dog judges were Lee Long from Berkey Ohio and Dave Duell from Sheffield, Pa.

These gentlemen spent many hours in the saddle in support of our sport, and their verdicts were well received and appreciated. This reporter noted that every judge commented that there were not any "bad" dogs in any of the stakes... some dogs were better this day than others, and dogs some made mistakes, but across the board essentially every dog that showed during the weekend showed the traits of a quality bird dog. This reporter suspects that those long hours at home resulted in some additional training hours for the dogs!

Our field trial sport would not be at such a high quality level were it not for the support of several sponsors. Purina has been a stalwart supporter of the National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity for many years. This year, as in past years, Purina donated ProPlan food for the winners. Our thanks go out to Purina rep,Greg Blair and the people of Purina for their outstanding support of our sport. Not only does Purina provide support of our trial, they also produce a high quality food that supports your canine nutritional needs. If you want your dogs to eat the best, choose Purina products.

SportDog Brand , our other major sponsor, is a manufacturer of high quality electronic training equipment. Jim Morehouse of SportDog Brand graciously donated SportDog Brand collars for use by the club. SportDog Brand carries a wide variety of high quality e-collars, as well as trackers, bark collars, and other canine-related training equipment. Their products are durable, reliable, and offered at a very reasonable cost. Most importantly, they back up their products with personal service. If you are in the market for a new collar or tracker, consider SportDog Brand . Thanks to SportDog Brand for your support of our field trial sports and our Walking Futurity.

Helping hands. Continuing the tradition of offering a program booklet for the Futurity, a 31st National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity booklet was available to all participants and spectators. Such booklets don't just happen; they require substantial effort and behind-the-scenes work. We were fortunate to have a special lady who once again provided the effort and work to produce a very nice program for this annual celebration. Special thanks to Deborah Fazenbaker of Kingsville, Ohio for gathering sponsors, designing, and producing this great memento of our Futurity. This booklet continues to be an annual part of our Futurity and it is well received. For those of you who were unable to obtain a copy, an online version is available on the National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity Facebook page. Be sure to visit our sponsors and thank them as well for supporting the National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity with their purchase of a page in our program.

We also wish thank our professional handlers, who are an essential part of our sport and its success. Mark Hughes, Hall-of-Famer Dave Hughes, Scott Forman and Robert Ecker ran dogs during the weekend, and their support is much appreciated.

Last, but certainly not least, a huge thank you to everyone who pitched in and worked so hard to make this Futurity a success. Futurity Secretary Chris Catanzarite, club members Dave Park, Norm Meeder, Doug McMillen, Eric Munden, Joe Camissa, Justin Mason, Kara Thatcher, and others assisted in bird planting, line marshalling, and many other duties to keep things moving. The old expression "many hands make light work" was certainly evident this weekend as we had many helpers, and in the course of events, made many new friends in the field trial fraternity. My apologies if I missed anyone. And, a big thank you to all the participants who entered their Derbies, puppies, and shooting dogs, and supported the efforts of the weekend.


The Gene Uhlman Puppy Classic is named after the iconic Gene Uhlman, a native of western Pennsylvania where he began his love for field trial bird dogs while attending Charleroi High School, south of Pittsburgh.

Gene was a high school teacher, but his love of bird dogs eventually changed his career, and he became a full time dog trainer until his death in 1992. Gene developed numerous winning dogs including Counterdrive, Countercharge, Keystone Skeezix, Elhew Link's Jewel, Rollin' Rebel, and many others. The National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity is pleased to name this Puppy Classic in his honor.

The Puppy Classic started the day's activities, breaking away Saturday morning on the east end of the course near Regis Pond, and heading west towards the observation deck. Turning north, the course crossed the ditch, traveled a gradual east, and finished up near Regis Pond.

This year's Classic was won handily by Miller's Special Upgrade (Penny), pointer female owned by Carlos Escalante and handled by Mark Hughes. Taking the red was Backwood's Wild Fire Bry, handled by Kara Thatcher for owner Justin Mason. Rounding out the placements was Thunderhill's Backin Black, Harry Tsepelias owner, and handled by Mark Hughes.

In the first brace, Miles (PM/McMillen) showed a classy, quick and purposeful and forward race with several wide casts to the front. Bit (PF/M. Hughes) was forward, but short in application. In No. 2, Penny, (PF/M. Hughes) and Backwoods Wild Fire Bry (PM/Mason) were the top two placements. Penny, the first place puppy, showed a classy and forward race, with a purposeful intent on her ground application, hunting the country. Bry, second, showed an extremely wide race, with a short absence; he was classy and forward.

G J F Jax, (PM/Fried) showed some immaturity in his application, but steadily improved as the brace moved forward. Remi (PM/M. Hughes) likewise showed his youthfulness, and improved with time. Both Caroline (PF/Munden) and River (RSM/Fazenbaker) showed moderate races; they both hunted and showed promising application, but were not terribly wide.

Both Sonny (PM/M. Hughes) and Jack (PM/McMillen) made several wide casts during the brace. Both dogs were classy and forward. Sonny showed an exceptional cast at time, and earned the No. 3 spot. Woodford (PM/M. Hughes) rendered a moderate and forward race.

Gene Uhlman Puppy Classic Winners

Harrisville, Pa., April 24 -- One Course

Judges: Chris Catanzarite and Dave Park

GENE UHLMAN OPEN PUPPY CLASSIC -- 10 Pointers and 1 Setter

1st--MILLER'S SPECIAL UPGRADE, 1695107, pointer female, by Miller's Upgraded Version--Miller's Special Edition. Carlos Escalante, owner; Mark Hughes, handler.

2d--BECKWOOD'S WILD FIRE BRY, 1691396, pointer male, by Double Deuce Zeke--Bucket List Bella. Justin Mason, owner; Karah Thatcher, handler.

3d--THUNDERHILLS BACK IN BLACK, 1693191, pointer male, by Thunderhills Pale Rider--High Desert Storm. Harry Tsepelias, owner; Mark Hughes, handler.


As noted previously, Mac's Real McCoy took the blue in this year's Futurity. Taking the No. 2 spot was Anna Lake Samantha, pointer female by Erin's Redrum ex Braveheart Cassie, bred by Mike Husenits and handled by Rob Matson. Third place went to G J F Sparq, pointer male bred, owned and handled by Greg Fried. Rounding out the placements was West Wind Big Jake, pointer male and littermate to the second place winner, owned by Jerry Mercatoris and handled by Mark Hughes.

Brace No. 1: Backwoods Wild Fire Blaze (PM/Justin Mason) and Redrum Rosie (PF/M. Hughes). Wild Fire scored the first find of the Futurity at 4 minutes at the top of the breakaway, along a feed strip on the west side; he showed good Derby manners on the flush and shot, swinging to mark the bird, but keeping his rear feet planted. Both dogs made wide casts to the front, round the bottom side of the course. Rosie crossed the ditch to the north side, while Wild Fire pressed forward, casting to the far reach of the course. At 20 Rosie pointed in some cover near the deer stand displaying broke manners on her bird work. Wild Fire was absent for a while, out of pocket. He was found at 24 in the fields near Regis Pond, exhibiting broke manners. Rosie scored a find at the same time, in the fields near the watering hole. Both dogs finished forward.

Both Mac's Real McCoy (PM/McClurg) and Cedar Creek Duke (RSM/Fazenbaker) worked up the grade and down into the bottom to the corner. McCoy was forward and classy; Duke showed some back casting. Crossing the ditch, both dogs moved east; Duke was observed under a bird. McCoy pointed in a grassy area near the watering hole; a recently expired bird was found, and a shot was fired. Both dogs moved to the north side of the course, with both showing some nice casts. McCoy pointed in a strip near Regis Pond; Duke failed to back, and the handler elected to pick up. McCoy showed broke manners on his bird. He finished strong to the front.

Anna Lake Samantha (PF/D. Hughes) and Beaver Meadow Boo (SF/Blakely) broke away, and Boo was found standing at the top of the hill, where he relocated and then stood. He went with the bird on the flush. Samantha was absent for a short time, but found at 8 standing in the far left corner over the breakaway hill; she stood with excellent manners for the flush and shot. At 12 Samantha was found standing in a feed strip below the observation deck, with good manners displayed. Boo bumped and chased at 20, with a good catch and retrieve for her handler. She pointed again at 29, but circled and then put the bird to flight. Samantha was found standing in the woods behind Regis Pond at 29; she displayed broke manners to end the brace. Both dogs had moderate and forward ground application; Samantha showed several nice casts forward.

Joe's Little Katana (PF/McClurg) and West Wind Big Jake (PM/M. Hughes) moved up the hill at the breakaway, and were over the top. Katana had a stop to flush at 14 on the backside of the course; she was found pointing at 17, with broke manners. Jake pointed at 23 near Regis Pond, with good derby manners. Katana had an unproductive at 25, then scored a broke find at 29. Both dogs had moderate races.

Double Deuce Pearl (PF/D. Hughes) and Cedar Creek Macarthur Ruby (RSF/Milton Schafer) followed. Pearl scored the first find of the brace, with a point and chase at 7; she pointed again at 13, with a hearty chase. At 16 she suffered an unproductive and the handler elected to pick up. Ruby had a moderate to wide forward race; she pointed at 22, with a hearty chase following. She pointed again at 27, with a subsequent chase. She finished forward.

G J F Sparq (PM/G. Fried), as a bye, showed a wide race from the breakaway, and continued so around the course. He pointed at 21 near Regis Pond, with good manners displayed. He finished strongly ahead.

Judges: Eric Munden and Dave Park


8 Pointers, 1 Setter and 2 Irish Setters

1st--MAC'S REAL MCCOY, 1686791, pointer male, by Mac's Silver Chief--Mac's Silver Shadow. Tim McClurg, owner and handler.

2d--ANNA LAKE SAMANTHA, 1684880, pointer female, by Erin's Redrum--Brave Heart Cassie. Robert Watson, owner; Dave Hughes, handler.

3d--G J F SPARQ, 1689931, pointer male, by Chelsea's Thunder Bolt--Babe of Flint Ridge. Greg Fried, owner and handler.

4th--WEST WIND BIG JAKE, 1685412, pointer male, by Erin's Redrum--Brave Heart Cassie. Jerry Mareatoris, owner; Mark Hughes, handler.


The Open Shooting Dog Stake was won in convincing fashion by Glassilaun War Paint, five-year-old pointer male owned by Jamie Nee of Massachusetts and handled by Robert Ecker. War Paint, by Sugarknoll War Paint ex Neely's Hot Peppar, ran in the 13th brace; his performance is noted below. Second place was Double Deuce Zeke, pointer male owned and handled by Doug McMillen of Dubois, Pa. Third was Grouse Hills Bullet Proof, owned by Giovonni Capocci of Katonah, N.Y., and handled by Robert Ecker.

In brace No. 1 were Phillips Moonlight Lilly (SF/Davw Hughes) and Maximum Resistance (SM/Robert Ecker). Lily scored the first find of the stake with a find at 5 at the top of the breakaway hill, with good manners displayed. She scored again at 19 on the back course, and again a minute later near the watering hole. She showed a moderate race, with some looping throughout the brace. Maximum Resistance was lost and not seen during the time.

Wayward Flying Tomato (SM/Mark Hughes) and Wildland Warrior (PF/Eric Munden). Warrior suffered an unproductive at the top of the hill at 4; Tomato scored the first find at 15, across the ditch, with Warrior backing. Both dogs pointed separate birds on the back side of the course at 17, with good manners on both dogs. Warrior scored again the back of the course after a wide cast, with good manners. Tomato was on the leash after knocking birds at 18. Warrior pointed again at 27, and finished with a wide cast.

Sterlingworth Jack (SM/Ecker) and Double Deuce Zeke (PM/McMillen). Zeke scored the first find of the brace at 5 at the top of the hill; he had a small relocation as the handler approached, and showed good manners henceforth. Jack suffered an unproductive over the hill in a feed strip, then pointed a dead bird in the same vicinity. Zeke went on a bird finding spree, with finds at 14, 16, and 19 on the north side of the course, all handled to perfection. Both dogs scored separate finds at 25, Zeke along the woodsline near Regis Pond, and Jack in some grassy cover along the ditch. Both dogs showed wide races, with Zeke slightly wider. They finished ahead.

In No. 4, Spec (PM/Park) pointed quickly at 2 in a feedstrip along the breakaway, with all in order. Double Deuce Butters (PM/M.Hughes) pointed in the wood lot at the top of the hill, with some ticking observed as the handler approached. Spec suffered an unproductive at 17 on the western portion beyond the breakaway; he was on the leash at 26 after a second unproductive on the north side of the course. Butters was under a bird in the same general vicinity, ending the brace.

Attitude's True Grit (SM/Ecker) scored a dug-in find at 7 over the hill in heavy cover on the south, towards the road; a dead bird was produced. He suffered an unproductive at 10 in that same corner, and after an extensive relocation effort handler elected to pick up. Keystone Ice (PM/Angott) had his first find at 18 on the north side of the course; he was on the leash after pushing a bird in some grassy cover near the watering hole.

Both A Distant Spec (PF/M. Hughes) and Backcountry Missy (PF/Catanzarite) turned on the afterburners at the breakaway, with wide casts forward. Spec was found standing at 3 at the top of the hill; Missy was found along the left. Both dogs exhibited good manners on their birds. Missy was lost soon after, and the retrieval device was requested. Spec was found pointing at 16 near the watering hole; she was found pointing again at 20 on the top of the hill on the north side of the course, with good manners displayed as the bird lifted. She finished strongly ahead.

Bo of Pineywood (PM/Ecker) pointed near the trees at the top of the breakaway hill, with all in order. Braggabull (PF/D. Hughes) was forward, and casting wide. Bo suffered an unproductive at 13 in a feed strip below the observation deck; at 20 he was under a bird on the north side of the course and his bid was over. Braggabull was found standing near Regis Pond, and produced her only bird of the brace at 25 after an extensive flushing effort. She finished wide and forward.

Grouse Trails Tuscarora (PM/M. Hughes) scored the first find of this brace at 5, over the hill on the west side of the breakaway, with all in order. Backcountry Girlfriend (PF/Catanzarite) suffered an unproductive at 8, near the same area, with Tusc backing. At the ditch, the twosome had a divided find at the ditch at 15, with good manners displayed by both. Girl showed a nice cast forward, and pointed on the north side of the course; Tusc came in to honor. At 28 both dogs were found standing near Regis Pond, and a bird was produced for the second divided find. Both dogs were forward at time.

In No. 9, Clark's Katzenjammer Kid (SM/Ecker) pointed at 4, but was up after going with the bird. Conneaut Creek Lake Erie Storm (RSF/Fazenbaker) pointed in the field near the corner at 8, but took some steps on the flush and was on the leash.

Pistol Grip (PM/M. Hughes) was pointed at 8 in the back corner, with good manner displayed as the bird lifted. and Backcountry Buddy (PM/Catanzarite) scored a find at the same time, but was not pleasing the handler and was picked up. Pistol scored again at 13, below the observation deck; he scored again at 15 and 17, in the north field. He showed a strong finish at time.

Both Grouse Hill Bullet Proof (SM/Ecker) and Lasambra (PM/D Hughes) showed wide races from the get-go; Bullet was found standing at 16 in the pines on the far west side of the course. Lasambra was absent for some time, and showed on the far west side of the course; he pointed on the far western edge, but was in the wagon after taking the bird. Bullet scored a find at 24 near Regis Pond; he casted forward along the finish, scoring again just before the observation deck. Bullet showed a bold and forward pattern throughout the brace.

Double Deuce Sage (PF/McMillen) and I'll Be Back (SM/M Hughes). I'll Be Back scored a find at the top of the hill at 5. He scored again at 7 on a feed strip over the hill to the south, after a relocation, with Sage honoring. I'll Be Back scored again at 16 in the field below the observation deck, with good manners displayed. At 26 I'll Be Back was back at the wagon after an indiscretion on a bird. Sage scored a find near Regis Pond at 27, and again along the finishing stretch at time. He showed a moderate race.

Glassilaun War Paint (PM/Ecker) scored his first find at 5, over the hill to the west; he showed class and composure on his bird. Shady Hills Whiskey Bonfire (SM/Forman) was on the leash at that time, after taking steps on a flushing attempt. War Paint showed wide and forward casts, but handled with finesse, coming in at the handler's bidding, hunting the objectives, and then moving forward. He scored his second find at 24 along the finish line past Regis Pond; moving forward, he finished strong and wide to the front to win the stake.

Brace No. 14 was a short one. Waybetter Dude (PM/Park) scooped a bird at 2 on the breakaway, and Jar's Way Leroy (SM/D. Hughes) took out a bird in a feed strip at 7 below the observation deck.

Boston (PM/Ecker) suffered an unproductive early at 4, with Leslie's Jigster (SM/Forman) honoring. Boston was on the leash after a second unproductive at 15, again with Jigster honoring. Jigster scored a find in the back corner, with good manners displayed. He scored again in the north field, and suffered an unproductive at 25 near the watering hole. He finished to the front.

Miss Penn Star (SF/Ecker), as a bye, scored a find in a feed strip south near the road at 4. She suffered a nonproductive at 12 below the observation deck, and finished the course with a moderate race.

Remember, Futurities are called "Futurities" because they are the future of our sport. An examination of this Futurity, as well as most other Futurities in the country, will find that Futurity placements produce the majority of our bird dog champions. Please support the National Walking Futurity by nominating your litter! We hope to see you next year at the 32nd National Walking Shooting Dog Futurity.

Open Shooting Dog Winners

Judges: Dave Duell and Lee Long

OPEN SHOOTING DOG -- 18 Pointers, 12 Setters and 1 Irish Setter

1st--GLASSILAUN WAR PAINT, 16673341, pointer male, by Sugarknoll War Paint--Neely's Hot Pepper. Jamie Nee, owner; R. J. Ecker, handler.

2d--DOUBLE DEUCE ZEKE, 1673940, pointer male, by Double Deuce Peter--Funseeker's Holiday. Douglas E. McMillen, Jr., owner and handler.

3d--GROUSE HILL BULLET PROOF, 1664897, setter male, by Waymaker Super Sam--Vitali Grouseringer Purdy. John Capocci, owner; R. J. Ecker, handler.

Glassilaun War Paint, First in the Open Shooting Dog Stake Double Deuce Zeke, Second in the Open Shooting Dog Stake