Do you want to know what the perfect gundog looks like? You won’t see it on the BBC, which dramatically pulled out of covering Crufts 2009. Instead, watch it on FieldsportsChannel.tv.
We were the only countrysports TV channel to produce a programme about Crufts this year. We made a a 45-minute TV documentary that’s free to download and watch on FieldsportsChannel.tv - and we rushed it out within 24 hours of the end of the show.
Among highlights, gundog expert Jan Andrews gave a one-soundbite guide to all the gundog breeds that the Kennel Club recognises. She and I raced round the Discover Dogs section of the show. Meanwhile, BASC Gundog Co-ordinator Jamie Stewart was delivering expert commentary to our other camera at the final of the BASC regional gamekeeper team competition. I met Mr Crufts, TV’s Peter Purves, who talked about his years at the show. What a great guy. Kennel Club secretary Caroline Kisko told us what the KC is doing to improve breed standards and top field trial judge Gaynor Bailey said what she is looking for in a gundog this year (if you can't wait for the answer, it's muscle). Then there was the winner of the Northesk Memorial Trophy for working gundog of the year. I won't spoil it by telling you who it was.
Some 28,000 dogs and their owners went to Crufts this year. Of these, more than 5,000 were gundogs and, of those, at least 400 were working gundogs. FieldsportsChannel.tv was there on day three, Gundog Day, to talk to competitors, judges, trainers and organisers. This programme brings you the best of 2009’s British retrievers, spaniels and HPRs. And remember – you won’t see it on the BBC!