MARIENVILLE, PA. — On a brisk and sunny late morning in early April on the Allegheny National Forest, near Marienville, Pa., Invitational Secretary George Johnson announced to the assembled group of dedicated grouse trialers, “The 2011 Invitational runner-up is (pausing momentarily for effect) . . . Upper Cove Desert Devil.” When handler Marc Forman walked slowly and humbly forward to accept the check, trophy and accolades he was also greeted with hearty applause and congratulations!
Silence again as George waited. “The 2011 Grouse and Woodcock Invitational Champion is . . . Terhaar’s Elvis.” Again, hearty applause greeted owner-handler Dave Terhaar of Allegan, Mich., as he walked to George’s outstretched hand to accept the winner’s check and George’s congratulations, plus the beautiful Invitational trophy in addition to a truck load of Purina Pro Plan!
This ceremony was the culmination of a full year’s effort by Secretary Johnson. Many consider this event the greatest trial in the woods today and, unquestionably, the hardest to win.
This Invitational, as guided by the bylaws, requires the winner to run three days in a row, at different times of the day, on different courses, with different bracemates, for an hour each day. This is a real three-day marathon test. Some say that it takes a “safe “ dog to win this event, that the big-time home run hitters can’t stay right for three days in a row. I can only say that Ch. Terhaar’s’ Elvis is the defending Grand National Grouse Champion that defeated all comers last November in Gladwin, Mich. Others who come quickly to mind that have won the Grand and the Invitational are Stillmeadow’s Jim, Paucek’s Tommyknocker, Cracklin Tail Speed and Hard Driving Bev.
The road to the 2012 Invitational begins with the spring wild bird trials in 2011, and all the fall 2011 grouse and woodcock trials. To award points a trial must submit a request to the Grand National Board of Directors, plus run on multiple courses and on wild birds. Points are earned based number of entries. For example, say the Pennsylvania Grouse Championship had 70 entries; the champion receives 16 points per dog, for a total of 1120 points; runner-up gets 12 points per dog so would receive 840. The Grand National Champion receives an automatic invite as does the previous year’s Invitational winner and runner-up. Fourteen dogs are invited, but only 11 slots are open because of the three automatic invitations.
Points tabulations are kept by directors from each grouse region and submitted to Secretary Johnson at the end of each season (spring and fall). They are then published in The American Field.
[The Grand National is broken into three regions per our bylaws, Northeast is New England, New York and the Canadian Maritimes; Mid-Atlantic is Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, New Jersey, Maryland, Kentucky and Tennessee; Great Lakes consisting of Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota and Ontario.]
Club President Richard Brenneman counts the points for Mid-Atlantic, Vice-president Bryan Wood for Lake States, and Vice-President Lloyd Murray for Northeast. Secretary Johnson, ably assisted by his wonderful wife for over 50 years, the lovely, Shirley Johnson, assembles all these trial lists, tabulates the points and sends invitations to the top 14 point-earners by the end of January.
The invitation also includes the judges and reporter. This is also done by nomination by the elected directors and the list is resent to all directors and club officers to vote on. This year’s two top vote receivers were Dave Hughes of Grampian, Pa., and this reporter of Stark, N. H. Dave is the most accomplished grouse dog trainer in history with over 90 championships to his credit and almost an equal number of runners-up. He has won this event more than anyone, and has judged it previously. Dave is a very knowledgeable and experienced grouse dog judge and a pleasure to judge with.
The writer has had the honor of sending twelve dogs to this event with over 20 invitations, including the inaugural in 1991 in Gladwin, Mich., where I was braced with Dave on opening day. I also have had the honor of judging this stake previously.
The host club was the Pennsylvania Grouse Dog Club providing willing volunteers to assist in the actual running of the trial. Richard and Helen Brenneman, as always, walked braces, marshalling, holding the judges’ horses when they were dismounted covering finds, moving vehicles, helping with lunches and all the little things that need to be done to put on a field trial.
Joe Cammisa came up huge, providing his camp for the secretary to save us time and money, in addition to meeting us every morning on Lamonaville Road with that irrepressible smile and positive morning salutation.
John McKellop walked every brace all three days and was always there when a horse needed to be held, or spectators kept on the courses. Thank you, John. (John McKellop is not even a director!)
The grounds consist of eight one-hour courses in a variety of stages of different aged cuttings. Mature pole timber dominates the four courses on the clubhouse side called Loleta where the birds are generally found in pine stands or younger aged “cuts” that provide the grouse protection from avian predators. The other four courses are about ten minutes away in the area called Lamonaville. There is more cutting on that side and the cover is generally a little thicker and tighter on these four courses.
Grouse were seen on all seven courses. There was no shortage of birds for the dogs that hunted!
Nestlé Purina again supported the Invitational in a major way providing product for all handlers, plus the winners’ “mother lode” of Purina product. In addition to their wonderful dog food, we were pleased to have Purina rep Dean Reinke who came and helped, as always, moving cars, cooking the filet mignons for the Purina-sponsored steak dinner both nights and fielding questions on dog nutrition from all handlers and owners. Thank you Dean and Nestlé Purina.
Judges’ horses were provided by R. B. Powell’s stable of sure-footed mounts. We appreciate R. B.’s safe and reliable horses and the knowledgeable and courteous staff he sends with them.
Another of our newer but major sponsors is Tri-Tronics which donates one of its fine training collars to each Grand National event — Puppy Classic, Futurity, Championship and Invitational — for the winner. This is worth several thousand dollars annually and we appreciate Tri-Tronics’ support. Thank you.
The drawing was held at lovely old Bucktail Hotel in downtown Marien-ville, Pa., where many a grouse trialer has dined over the years. At 7:00 p. m. Secretary Johnson welcomed all, announced the course order and read out the dogs’ names. The bowl with all the dogs’ names was sent out into the room with dogs’ names being read by each person pulling the slip. Day No. 2 was done by computer on a program developed by Dr. Ken Wong of the University of Pittsburgh, specifically for the Invitational. (The program is now expanded and available, for free, to handle 300 dogs, on multiple courses, multiple handlers, bitches in season and can be set up to be done virtually on line at a given time on any web site. If interested call Secretary Johnson at (814) 368-4429.)
A wonderful table of hors d’oeuvres and treats was also set out by Barbara, proprietor of The Bucktail, compliments of Purina.
THE WINNERS AND OTHERS
As the large group of ardent grouse trialers assembled at 7:30 a. m. at course No. 1, Lamonaville, on a very chilly morning, Secretary Johnson gave what we call “the speech.”
“Gentlemen,” he announced, “do not run through the course. Do not run to your dogs on point; the judges need to dismount and be with you to see or hear the birds. Do not put them up before anyone is with you. This is a championship, not a Derby stake, don’t run.”
We were off and running with bells ringing at 7:49.
Terhaar’s Elvis, nine-year-old tricolor setter male, is the defending Grand National Grouse Champion, having vanquished a large and talented field of 72 dogs at Gladwin last November. Elvis is a short-coupled 48-pound tricolor setter male. He runs with a happy and attractive gait and cracking tail; he points with breathtaking style.
Elvis earned his way here as an automatic invitee with his win of The Grand National. He was braced with another former Grand National winner, Jack Harang’s handsome white and liver pointer male Autumn Moon. Wiz, as Moon is called, is a very large dog but moves with grace and style. He ranges wide and hard yet handles for trainer-handler Scott Chaffee.
Wiz earned his way here with a win of the Lakes States Grouse Dog Championship last October at Gladwin where, coincidentally, Dave Hughes was one of the judges.
Elvis and Wiz were drawn in the third brace on course No. 3 at Lamonaville. It was cool but sunny, a beautiful day to run grouse dogs. Both dogs broke hard to the front and were instantly hunting. Elvis was wide at 12 to 16 and was called on but he showed coming from good looking cover on the left of the course. Near the half Moon’s bell was thought to have stopped also deep left. Scott Chaffee and I went looking and found the dog pointing on the edge of a small field, ticking slightly. Handler assessed the situation, walked along the field edge in front of the dog, then indicated he was not going to flush but was going to ask the dog to move as he was showing some uncertainty. Moon worked cautiously around the area then moved on.
Dave and I switched dogs after 30. At 41 Elvis was deep forward right in a large clear cut of ten-year-old poplar and beach when his bell just stopped. Handler indicated he felt his dog was pointing. I dismounted and the search began. Scout was also dispatched perhaps 40 yards to our right. We were looking for a couple of minutes when Chaffee came in behind us with Judge Hughes, also dismounted, although Moon’s bell could clearly be heard ringing loudly to our right. This was pointed out to Chaffee by Judge Hughes that his bell was moving, yet he continued to go deeper into the cover. Mr. Terhaar’s scout called the flight of a grouse, not seen or heard officially. Moments later Moon’s bell stopped. I suggested to Terhaar that he go down to where the pointer stopped as he may have found Elvis and was backing. As we made our way through the cut both dogs were seen not ten yards apart, the pointer looking directly at Elvis in clean cover. Terhaar fired, I looked at Judge Hughes and pointed to my ears. He shook his head No. I am guessing he was firing for scout’s claim of a grouse, which officially counted for nothing. However, as we closed in on both dogs another bird lifted to Elvis’ right and Chaffee shot claiming this grouse for his dog. Both judges felt it was clearly a backing situation and recorded it as such. We called to the marshals for the course and we soon were back in the saddle and continued up the course hunting.
At 46 Elvis stopped hard about 30 yards to our left. I said to Dave, “We’ll find him quick this time!” As we made our way to Elvis, Moon’s bell was coming across the front from right to left and stopped in the same area as Elvis. As we approached, we could clearly see both dogs as the cover was very open except for a large clump of hemlocks. Again it looked to be a classic point and honor situation. Elvis looked like a statue on point, head high, tail poker straight. Moon was very intense but his tail was back level and flat off his back, not uncommon for a dog being surprised into a back. I saw the grouse running in front of Elvis and yelled, “It’s on the ground running.” Terhaar chased it to flight and fired. Judge Hughes told me there were two birds there. At this moment Chaffee shot, claiming the birds for his dog also, which was his right. However, we had no way of knowing if his dog was backing or indeed pointing, as handler was claiming, but when Chafee shot he was also telling us that this is how his dog points. Again Elvis was heeled to the course. (Dave Terhaar never uses a lead with the dog, at the breakaway, after a find, he heels him, man and dog as a team.)
At 51 deep on the left Elvis stopped again. The search was on. After we walked perhaps 200 yards into the cover going way down in a mature stand of hemlocks I spotted his collar. Elvis was pointing toward a small field opening, again with that majestic style, with small stands of beech thickets around it. Handler said, “The grouse just jumped off a stump in front of the dog.” I didn’t see it but said, “Don’t worry, we’ll flush it.” It took a trip around that little field before the grouse gave it up and exploded off to our right, and the shot sounded. We made our way back to the course, Elvis at heel. While this occurred Moon logged an unproductive.
Elvis finished his hour forward and driving with three grouse finds in the book, all accomplished without a blemish or bobble and stunning pointing posture. At time I saw the gallery lined up along the course so I rode my horse into the cover not knowing if handler and judge were looking for a dog, or maybe I could see a bird they were not in a position to see. Several minutes later Judge Hughes rode over to me and explained they had found Moon on point. They flushed but did not see or hear a bird. The gallery claimed they heard and saw a bird so Judge Hughes asked Chaffee, “Did you see or hear a bird”? Scott said “No”. Of course a judge can’t allow the gallery to enter into his evaluation but he felt he didn’t want to tag the dog with another unproductive so we agreed to call it a “non event”.
Terhaar’s Elvis was named “day dog” at the conclusion of the running the first day.
Day No. 2 Terhaar’s Elvis was on course No. 4 at Loleta braced with Bryan Wood’s winning all white pointer male Grouse River Ace, trained by the Forman brothers, Marc and Scott of Shady Hills Kennels, and ably handled by Scott. Both dogs ran hard big forward races on a hot afternoon. Ace pointed at 19 in unlikely cover, with Elvis coming in and backing. At 58 Ace put up a grouse in front of all, and bounced a few jumps and his bid was over. Ace had a good grouse find on day No. 1 and was definitely coming back for the finals if he made it through this last two minutes.
Day No. 3, the finals. Per Invitational guidelines, the judges can put a dog on any course they want, for any reason, with any bracemate that has also made the third day finals. Dave and I decided to put Elvis on course No. 2 at Lamonaville, up to this point the only course we had not seen grouse on. We had seen Elvis point grouse three times, we had him with two strong days on the ground, we didn’t want our best dog to crash. But we also thought if any dog could find a grouse on that course, Elvis could.
We braced Elvis with Bloom’s Ole Dollar, Denny Bloom’s tricolor setter female trained and handled by Lance Bressler. Ole Dollar had delivered a very strong two find performance on day No. 2, and she too was in a position where she did not need any more finds, just a strong day No. 3 and a good finish as she had a strong day No. 1 on course No. 1 at Loleta. However it was not to be. Ole Dollar went deep right at 9, scout was sent out at 11 but the dog was not seen again under judgment. Elvis was running forward, big and strong and at 38 his bell faded then stopped. It took a little while to locate him but the grouse was right there where he said it was, shot was fired and Elvis now had his fourth grouse find in the book as he finished day No. 3 forward, driving and hunting. Elvis had no unproductives. He had backed his bracemate willingly and delivered three strong hours of grouse hunting, on three consecutive days, a truly amazing performance, and a very worthy Invitational Champion.
Our runner-up, Upper Cove Desert Devil, tricolor setter male owned by Bob Grassi of Washington, Pa., and trained by the Forman Brothers and handled by Marc Forman, earned his invitation by winning runner-up in the New York Grouse Championship and runner-up in the Armstrong Grouse Classic. Grumpy, as this hard hunting setter is called, drew the last brace on day No. 1, course No. 4 at Loleta. Grumpy was braced with Upper Cove Billie Babe which earned her way here by winning the National Amateur Grouse Championship at Gladwin, Mich. Billie is a smallish setter female under the whistle of Scott Forman. Billie would see a piece of cover and head for it, tail cracking, very fast. Not a big running bitch, just an eyeful and all business. Both dogs ran hard and fast. Grumpy could have been more forward the first half. Grouse got up wild at 6 and 33 but no work was logged on these birds.
On day No. 2, Desert Devil drew course No. 1 at Lamonaville, not a particularly good draw for him as he was in the last brace the previous night and the first this morning, but it didn’t faze him. Grumpy was braced with Wintergreen Max, Mickey Fancher’s defending Invitational champion. Grumpy was running hard to the good cover and hunting in logical places when his bell stopped deep on the left. Judge Hughes and Marc Forman had to look awhile to find the dog but when they did he looked good, high head and tail. Mark flushed the grouse, all in order at wing and shot, a good dug-up grouse find. Grumpy finished strong, his tail all bloody from crashing the cover so hard.
Max, nearly all white setter male, ran hard and attractive. He logged a pair of unproductives. If Mickey had flown a bird from either of these stands he would have been back for day No. 3 as his charge ran with speed, power and drive. I liked him better on the ground this year than last year when he won it all!
On day No. 3, Desert Devil was braced with Quail Trap Sadie on course No. 4 at Lamonaville. It was sunny but cool, mid 40s. Both setters broke hard forward with bells being heard intermittently as this course begins in a valley and climbs steeply to a plateau at about 25-30, then levels out into some outstanding cover. Desert Devil hunted the cover as it was presented to him. He hunted the young growth early on the left, attacked the clearcuts at 30 and 40, made a major league move through pole timber on the left at 45 which brought him forward on course several minutes later. His bell stopped at 55 in a pine stand just to the left of the course, which eventually proved to be unproductive. Desert Devil finished forward and driving, a tremendous three-day effort and a very worthy runner-up.
Quail Trap Sadie was perhaps in the strongest position for runner-up at the beginning of the third day finals. Sadie had put down two strong grouse dog hunting efforts, had a good find at time on day No. 2 and just needed to stay in the groove one more day. But that is what makes this trial so special, yet difficult, three days in a row of not only finding birds and running strong but also handling.
Sadie went out hard, stopping twice in the first 20 minutes, scouts, handler and Judge Hughes looking for her, not really sure if she was stopped or not. She eventually started up on her own, no birds seen or heard by Judge Hughes. Sadie came to the front with the forward party at 24. I called back as we were at the top of the plateau that she was “up front.” No one answered so I asked John McKellop to go back and inform handler Chaffee we had the dog way up front with us. I then asked Scott Forman to keep an eye on her, although her time with us was brief; she went forward and was gone. By 35 we were all reunited and going forward. Sadie was not heard moving by 40 so scout Dave Hawk was sent to the right where they thought she may have stopped. Chaffee and I went forward looking and listening for Sadie. Several minutes later we heard Desert Devil stop hard on the left of the course. We yelled back to Marc and Judge Hughes. Chaffee wanted to go in and see if Desert Devil had found Sadie. I asked him to wait for the other handler so we didn’t blow any birds out of there without Marc Forman available to handle his dog. Chaffee now went in to look but no Sadie, so we continued to look for her. At 56 we heard her bell coming in from way back down the course. At time Chaffee had his hands full trying to get her on the lead. Her finals effort was just too erratic. Her handling response was really lacking but no one can deny her power, drive and desire. Quail Trap Sadie will be back!
DAY NO. 1
Wild Apple Jack (Doherty), white and liver good sized pointer male, earned his way here by gaining runner-up at the Northeast Cover Dog Championship in Prospect, Me., and winner of the International Amateur Woodcock Championship in Debec, New Brunswick. Grouse River Ace (S. Forman). , nearly all white pointer male, accumulated his points by winning runner-up in the Michigan Woodcock Championship in Gladwin, Mich. We began on the four Lamonaville courses, then went over and used No. 1, No. 2 and No. 4 on the clubhouse side or Loleta. We announced we would skip the M&M course in the first series. Jack hunted hard for the full 60. He seemed to want to range beyond some of the better cover on the course. Craig had his hands full but got him around. Ace scored a nice grouse find at 3 in the clearcut off the breakaway, posture and style excellent. Ace suffered an unproductive at 21 in likely cover. His running style was pleasing. He hunted all the good cover on the course, a very nice hour.
Needlepoint’s Tiger Lilly (Lance Bressler), Dick Stroup’s white and black setter female, earned her place here by winning the Venango Open All-Age. High Desert Dream (S. Forman), classy white and liver pointer bitch owned by Dr. Gus Piperus and handled by Scott Forman, gained her points by winning the Pennsylvania Grouse Championship and runner-up in the Ontario Grouse Dog Championship. Tiger Lilly ran big and strong and stopped at 41 deep in a cut. We thought she was pointing so Lance was flushing real big for her but as we worked our way back to her we saw she was actually backing Dream. Scott Forman was alerted and he came in to flush, but to no avail as it was unproductive. During these lengthy flushing attempts, Tiger Lilly’s posture deteriorated to a less than classic position of her appendage. She seemed to lack some foot speed in her application, although her effort was thorough. Dream started fancy, light on her feet and cracking. As her hour continued she got rougher and we just didn’t see enough of her the second half. I have never seen her run before. I told Dave when this brace was over, “I can see why she is winning, she is really nice.”
Terhaar’s Elvis (Terhaar) and Autumn Moon (Scott Chaffee) were reported.
Quail Trap Sadie (Chaffee), tricolor setter female, received her invitation by winning the Wisconsin Cover Dog Championship and being named runner- up in the Grand National at Gladwin. River’s Edge Sadie (M. Forman), tricolor setter female, earned her points by winning the Michigan Woodcock Championship and the Northern Michigan Cover Dog Championship, both at Gladwin. Quail Trap Sadie, one of Dave Hawk’s good setters, ran a good race. She punched for the whole hour, hunted hard and was forward. River Edge Sadie, trained and handled by Marc Forman, started fine, ripped a grouse at 21, got behind some the second half and was not within hearing at time. She was basically eliminated on day No. 1. Even though Sadie had an incident with a grouse, Invitational rules asked that we do not pick up any dogs so all dogs have the benefit of a bracemate.
We were over on the clubhouse side after lunch, course No. 1, Loleta.
Wintergreen Max, nearly all white setter male, was here as an automatic as the defending champion. His owner-trainer is his handler, Robert Fancher. Bloom’s Ole Dollar (Bressler) earned his way to this Invitational by winning runner-up laurels at the Northern Michigan Cover Dog Championship at Gladwin. Both setters ran very good on this course. Looking at mine and Dave’s notes: Max, “Good job, lots of drive.” Dollar, “Good race, went to right places. Nice, forward, hunted.”
I lost my digital recorder on day No. 2 so lost a lot of birds getting up wild, but do remember grouse on every course on the clubhouse side.
Terhaar’s Rogue (Terhaar), good size tricolor setter female, got her points from winning runner-up in the Lake States Grouse Championship plus winning the Kinne Classic, both at Gladwin. Moss Meadow Traveler (Chaffee), good size tricolor setter male owned by Ken Moss, earned his points from runner-up wins at the Minnesota Grouse and the Wisconsin Cover Dog Championships. Rogue was big and rough on this day, logged an unproductive at 18 with good posture but finished strong. Traveler was also big and also rough. He pointed unproductively at 31 but faded a little down the stretch.
Upper Cove Desert Devil (M. Forman) and Upper Cove Billie Babe (S. Forman) were reported earlier.
DAY NO. 2
Upper Cove Desert Devil (M. Forman) and Wintergreen Max (Fancher) were previously covered.
Upper Cove Billie Babe (S. Forman) showed us the three Fs — forward, fancy and fast. I really enjoyed watching her run. I so wanted her to point a bird.
Terhaar’s Rogue (Terhaar) lived up to her name today. She was big and wild. Her handler finally threw in the towel at 49. However, I would like it put in the record that Dave Terhaar plays the game right. He did not yell and scream for his dog and keep going up the course without his dog and wipe out his bracemate. He played the game like a gentleman. When he realized his charge was less than responsive, he got quiet and just walked along behind the other handler, the way it should be done.
Bloom’s Ole Dollar (Bressler) and Moss Meadow Traveler (Chaffee). We were back on Lamonaville, No. 3, a course that was full of birds yesterday. Dollar started strong but was a little erratic, hunting hard and in cover all the time. Lance asked Judge Hughes at 23, “Is this too much for you?” Dave said, “Lance, the dog is in good cover, hunting it all. Gather him up and let’s go!” I took over the dog at 30. She was looking good, punching, hunting and forward. Dollar’s bell stopped on the right of the course at 36 in young growth. As we were looking for him I heard him correct. When found he was kind of twisted around pointing into a blow, very intense with very attractive pointing posture. Lance started his patented 50 acre flushing ritual but it was obvious the grouse was in the blow down as the dog’s eyes looked like pizzas and he had a nose full of hot scent and was puffing. Lance approached the dog and the grouse exploded from under the blow down and went straight up, Lance firing, all good for the shot. Dollar continued hunting at good range and pace. We crossed an open field and Dollar went deep to the right in a young cutting, bell fading, then stopping. Lance proceeded to look and several minutes later we spied her pointing into another deadfall looking very good, eyes bugged, tail pointing skyward. Lance started to go away from her to begin “the big flush.” I said, “Lance, it looks like maybe the bird is right in front of her.” As he turned to go to her the grouse blew out right in front of her, she again good for the shot. Dollar finished hunting and punching, a very good hour of grouse hunting. Lance really has the dog right! Ole Dollar was named “day dog” on day No. 2 and received the $100.
Moss Meadow Traveler was also hunting and punching nicely early. We crossed a small stream at 8. Chaffee was calling the dog in for a drink. As he approached us on the course he swapped ends and pointed just to the right of the course. Traveler is a sight on point, high head, tail straight and stretched out, very attractive. It was very open here but Scott flushed a grouse right in front of Traveler and all was good for the shot. The dog was inspired now, good pace, tail cracking, tearing the woods apart looking for more birds. Traveler stopped late in the hour on the right of the course. Judge Hughes and Scott were in there flushing when we came through with Dollar which went way below them and deeper and stopped. This was Dollar’s second find. Chaffee indicated to Judge Hughes that he didn’t get a chance to relocate on this bird. Judge Hughes agreed and instructed handler to fire. Judge Hughes related this to me after the brace so this work went in the book as a divided find for Traveler. Traveler was brought back to the course to finish, continued to hunt but again his pace was a step less than when he started.
River’s Edge Sadie (M. Forman) was basically running for “day money” as she was eliminated the day before. She was not pleasing her handler today and was up at 41. High Desert Dream (S. Forman) was not eliminated but needed to settle in and point some birds. She did neither and Scott also threw in the towel early. While we were looking for her in a young cutting two grouse were seen running around under a pine tree and another got up wild deeper in the cut, but the pointer was not in there.
Quail Trap Sadie (Chaffee) ran her guts out on course No. 1 at Loleta, big and strong, not always forward and not always directed, but she filled the course up and stabbed a grouse with breathtaking style at 58 with dynamite location of the grouse. At this point Sadie had delivered two strong days on the ground, had a good grouse find and was sitting pretty. Needlepoint’s Tiger Lilly (Bressler) also ran and hunted hard. We put up a grouse right on the course at 31 but a back of Sadie at 58 was Tiger Lilly’s only work in the book.
Wild Apple Jack (Doherty) and Autumn Moon (Chaffee), two brothers, two former Grand National winners, were away on course No. 2, Loleta. Both pointer males took the bit in their teeth. There is a lot of pole timber on this course and patches of good cover. We put up a grouse wild at 33, no dogs around. Craig seemed particularly frustrated with Jack as he said among other things, “Nice of you to stop by” on one of the brief times we had the dog with us. However there is no denying both animals possess power, style, carriage and desire. Both are class grouse dogs.
Terhaar’s Elvis (Terhaar) and Grouse River Ace (S. Forman) were reported above.
Marienville, Pa., April 2
Judges: Dave Hughes and Lloyd Murray, Jr.
GRAND NATIONAL GROUSE AND WOODCOCK INVITATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP [One-Hour Heats on Two Consecutive Days; One-Hour Finals] — 14 Entries
Winner—TERHAAR’S ELVIS, 1546736, setter male, by Long Gone George—Grouse Ridge Maxima. Dave Terhaar, owner and handler.
Runner-Up—UPPER COVE DESERT DEVIL, 1591273, setter male, by Shady Hills Billy—Timberdoodle Ohso Bad. R. W. Gassi, owner; Marc Forman, handler.