Gundog Challenge held at Cowdray raises more than £3,500 for air ambulance charity

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A Gundog Challenge involving some of the best handlers in the UK and Europe took place on Saturday, April 27 at Cowdray raising more than £3,500 in support of the Air Ambulance Charity Kent Surrey Sussex.

Organised by Cowdray’s experienced and award-winning gundog trainer Jason Mayhew, 16 teams with four dogs per team took part in a series of competition events where highly trained dogs worked with their experienced owners to complete seven tests. This is the third year that the event has taken place at Cowdray.

There were teams from all over the world including Switzerland, Scotland, Wales, Belgium as well as from the UK who took part in the event which began at the Deer Park before moving to The Ruins. For the first time this year a scurry was introduced which is a timed test to retrieve a dummy, with the quickest dog back with it winning. This proved very popular with spectators.

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The winning team was Team Highseas from Cambridgeshire, which was captained by Kevin Doughty who has not only made-up champions in the retriever and spaniel world, but he has also judged the prestigious International Retriever Championship three times.

Gundog Challenge held at Cowdray.Gundog Challenge held at Cowdray.
Gundog Challenge held at Cowdray.

The ‘Top Dog’ was owned by Jamie Bettinson. It was a tight race as he was only one point ahead of two competitors. Jamie came all the way from Wales and is a well-known judge and competitor and has judged the retriever Championship twice.

After the competition had concluded, a tea, a charity auction and prize-giving took place in The Walled Garden.

Cowdray Gundog Trainer Jason Mayhew said: “We couldn’t have asked for more: the day went like clockwork. Thank you to everyone who helped us raise money for Air Ambulance Charity Kent Surrey Sussex, a very worthwhile charity and to Cowdray for all their help and support.

“We had over 150 spectators standing on the Causeway in front of The Ruins watching what is the biggest gun dog team test in the country with some of the best gundog handlers in the UK taking part.”