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The CKC Congratulates Our Talented Junior Handling National Finalists

Best Overall Junior (Conformation): Katie McGinn. Photography courtesy of Cathy French Photography.

Canada’s largest dog show, the Alberta Kennel Club’s Summer Classic, welcomed Canada’s top young handlers to compete in the Canadian Kennel Club’s Junior Handling Nationals, held at the beautiful, world-renowned Spruce Meadows facilities on Friday, July 29, 2016.

There was stiff competition in the conformation finals with participants travelling from each CKC zone to participate. The Best Overall Junior was Katie McGinn of Elmsdale, NS. This was Katie’s third time representing her zone. A juniors competitor since the age of seven, Katie has honed her skills under the tutelage of Allison Foley for the last six years. Katie will be attending university in the fall, but will take a break to represent Canada at Crufts 2017. We wish Katie the best of luck.

While fewer in numbers, the quality and dedication of the obedience juniors was equally inspiring. The Best Overall Junior was Rachel Driedger of Powell River, BC. Rachel began obedience training with a Sheltie, but competed with her newest charge, a Belgian Shepherd Tucker. When not in the ring, Tucker and Rachel hike, go to the beach and do “calculus homework together.” Now that’s training!

Best Overall Junior (Obedience): Rachel Driedger. Photography courtesy of Cathy French Photography.

The CKC’s Chairman of the Board, Bob Rowbotham, was in Calgary for the event and was impressed with the overall quality of our young dog fanciers. He congratulated one and all, and expressed that “all the junior representatives did their zones proud and we wish them well in the future.”

It takes a nation to host a National, and this year’s event was no exception. Under the guidance of Richard Paquette, Chair of the CKC Junior Kennel Club, and Jan Williamson Osterbauer, Junior National Chair, sincere thanks goes out to the Junior Handling zone reps who work tirelessly all year, encouraging the next generation – the future of our sport.

Judges and sponsors are also a crucial part of any successful event. Thank you to our conformation judges Helen Davio, Doug McIntyre, Chrissy Riehl and Shannon Scheer, and obedience judges Tubby Miller, and Garry and Pauline Baldwin.

Many thanks to our sponsors: the Global Pet Foods stores in Calgary for teaming up to help fund the conformation winner’s trip to Crufts; the TD Bank Group for providing money towards the obedience winner’s bursary; Canadian Dog Show Fancier (Shawn and Nadine) for designing, printing and shipping the program; for the jackets each Junior received; Ditto Communications and Cathy French Photography for providing pro-bono professional services to help make the event special for each participant; and Purina, Wahl and Hanlder’s Choice for supplying prizes for the participants.

In her welcome message, AKC President, Wendy Hamilton-Petkau, stated that “Our theme this year is all about sportmanship.” For the first time ever, there was a three-way tie for the Wenrick Sportsmanship Award – including an obedience competitor! Congratulations to Thomas Adams, Caroline Holicka and Jessie Powell for sharing this honour.

Lastly, and certainly not least, thank you to the Alberta Kennel Club for hosting this year’s Junior Nationals and for its continued dedication to hosting one of Canada’s premiere conformation and performance events.
Congratulations to the 2016 National Junior Handling Final winners. The CKC and its members are proud of your accomplishments.

Best Overall Junior (Conformation): Katie McGinn
Best Overall Junior (Obedience): Rachel Driedger
1st Place: Katie McGinn, NS
2nd Place: Cassidy Furlong, BC
3rd Place: Xander Scriver, ON
4th Place: Sydney Robinson, ON
1st Place: Rachel Driedger, BC
2nd Place: Emma Gheseger, BC
3rd Place: Danielle Clark, ON
4th Place: Thomas Adams, NB
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