Now with live streaming video of the 40 semi-final runs on Saturday and the double-lift final on Sunday! Awesome.
Have I mentioned that the splendid border collies at the National Finals are the best working sheepdogs in North America? Slick-coated, rough-coated, wire-faced [Polly Matzinger's James ran in the Finals on Wednesday] — yet for all their diversity in appearance, how similar they are in their aptitude for the work! Eileen Stein explains:
[Border collies] are like Alaskan Huskies in that they are bred to a working standard rather than an appearance standard, and they are a breed rather than a type in that they have been bred to that working standard long enough that they almost always meet that working standard better than any other kind of dog[...] Alaskan Huskies don't have a registry and border collies do -- that's the only significant difference.
Dennis Birchall has won the Irish National six times, and is one of four most excellent judges at Belle Grove for our 2010 National Finals. Dennis, Mossie and Flash represented Ireland again this year at the International Supreme Championship in County Antrim, Northern Ireland, a county whose motto, fittingly enough, is "Through trial to triumph," but the triumph in brace this time went to Richard Hutchinson with Roy and Sweep. Michael Gallagher and Cap were 2010 International Supreme Champions — you can find more results at the ISDS website here.
Zamora Hills [and some dog show]
This is not herding.