I run my dogs in some local field trials as a way to give them exposure to another hunting situation. This past weekend they had a big National Upland Classic Series field trial that drew contestant from 8 different states and over 70 dogs entered. I entered my 7 year old GSP just to see how he would do against the "big guns". I knew the local crowd was predominantly gray beards, but we do get a few youngsters occasionally on "Buddy Hunts". On the Upland Classic there was no handler under the age of 30. Talking with one of the oldtimers in the field trial world, he said the Joplin club used to have 80 members, but currently stands at 26.
It looks like we can add field trialing to the outdoor sports that are slowly dying out along with the older generation. I suppose short of kidnapping some teenagers, the only answer is as stated in the earlier posts, we have to sell these sports and our outdoor lifestyle to a generation that lives online and if it doesn't happen on the web, they're not interested. I'm not sure we can win that one.
As a by the way, my 7 year old Bode placed 11th in the trial, but his 5 minute 34 second run for three quail in the bag would have taken second if his handler (me) hadn't had to take two shots at one bird. I'll need to work on that.
_________________ An elderly gentleman, his faithful dogs, and a 16 ga SXS. All is right with the world.
Joined: 24 Jun 2013
Location: canandaigua - western n.y. (formerly deerhunter)
We've been getting some actual positive PRESS lately ,and this AM , FOX is running snippets on the local TV . They are at our Newark GC , and doing segments on the youth clays team . Last fall they approached us about sponsoring , and right now , they are in the middle of the league . We ended up with the min 5 kids , so if they stick with it , we're G-T-G !! The regs always make it difficult , and of course there is a 65buck entry (plus shooting costs), so we didn't have more kids . We are doing what we can to minimize their costs ... When they approached us last fall , it was to get to the 5 team requirement for the league . The number I heard , there are now 19 , and they are lurking in the woods for many more ! It was kind of funny to watch the reporters . The girl doing the program shot a few birds and actually hit the 4th one . At the studio , a couple non shooters were clenching each other , scared !! The teaching needs to continue to all levels of participants , and programs like this help soo much ..... thanx to FOX Rochester , and Jeremy Newman on 92.5 WBEE for the support that's been so long over due !
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