2017 Sponsors

Blue Ribbon

PURINA


Red Ribbon

Ed Anderson Art


Yellow Ribbon

John and Elizabeth Gibson

Sirocco Golf Club


White Ribbon

Stop and Go Reproductions

Olson Silver Company


Green Ribbon

Westglen Kennels


Series Sponsors

First Series

Central Ontario Spaniel Club


Second Series

Igor's Pheasantry


Third Series

L&L Specialities


Forth Series

Silver Willow Sporting Club


Fifth Series

Skaar Creek Farm


Water Series

Calgary English Springer Spaniel Club



GUN TEAM

LUTHER CUTTS - Gun Captain

Being a part of the 2017 National Championship is an honour, and I am eagerly looking forward to the challenges, and the rewards, of fielding a first-class team of skilled, competent high-quality shooters.

I have been hunting game, and shooting various firearms, for over 40 years. Being born and raised on the prairies of southern Alberta, I quickly acquired an aptitude for hitting moving targets – game animals, coyotes and game birds have been my quarry for over four decades. From the plains of Kansas to the mountains of Alberta and BC, to the frozen lakes and rivers of the Northwest Territories and Nunavut, taking game on the move has been a significant part of my life.

I have also been a firearms instructor for decades, teaching handgun, rifle and shotgun skills to hundreds of individuals. I learned early on that shooting is not difficult once one grasps the fundamentals, but teaching someone to make the right decision before discharging the firearm is the real challenge. This is as true in the realm of law enforcement as it is in field trial shooting. The gun team must not just shoot birds that have presented on the course – they must shoot those birds in the place that gives the dogs the best opportunity to showcase their skills. The gun team I have assembled is comprised of some of the best in the game at making those critical decisions, thereby allowing the performance of the dogs to determine the outcome of the trial. It is this philosophy that informs every decision made by the team and its individual members. The underpinnings of this team are professionalism and safety in everything they do, as well as establishing a harmonious team effort to support the trial, the competitors and each other.

In addition to my law enforcement training and my insatiable love of hunting, I also had the opportunity to shoot competitively internationally with handguns and shotguns. I have been incredibly fortunate to have some great mentoring influences in my shooting career, and in particular, field trialing. The best mentors always emphasized principled, honourable conduct as well as shooting performance at the highest level. Their advice has never led me astray, and it has guided me through the selection of the team.

Shooting over some of the best spaniels anywhere on the prairies of southern Alberta is always a thrill, and the National Championship kicks that up to another level. There are few things as rewarding as being a partner with the handler and the dog as they apply their craft in the field.




ARLEY ELLIOT

I have been involved in English Springer Spaniel Field Trials since 1990, when I returned to Canada from England with my first Springer Spaniel.

It’s been my privilege to own and compete with 3 Canadian Field Trail Champions, FTCH Magnum of Stanthorn, FTCH Bushbusters Dan and FTCH Just for the Hell Abitt.

The highlight of my Field Trial career came in 2004 when I fortunate enough to place second in the 2004 Canadian Field Trail National Championship in Regina SK with FTCH Just for the Hell Abitt.

In 2005, along with Mike Nolan, I judged the Canadian National FT Championship in Quebec.

I began shooting at Springer Field Trails 2003. In 2010, I was a member of the Gun Team for the Canadian National Open Field Trial Championship. In 2010 and in 2014 I was on the Gun Team for the Canadian National Amateur Field Trial Championship.

It is an honour to be invited to join the Gun team for the 2017 Canadian National Open FT Championship and I want to wish all the competitors the best of luck.




CHIP BUNKER

I would like to thank the Calgary Spaniel Club and the Field Trial Committee for inviting me to shoot the Canadian National.

My wife and I reside in Fallon Nevada and have been married for 31 wonderful years. I try to get my spaniels out to South Dakota pheasant hunting every couple years, along with the many chukar and quail hunts here in Nevada. Mostly just a hunter I have competed with my dogs in a few trials every year and really enjoy it, even though I have not been very successful in the ribbon hunt.

The first springer spaniel I bought cost me $125. That was a small fortune for a young 16 year old in 1981. I bought a book on springer spaniels and got to training. That dog sure taught me a thing or two; By the time that dog retired I think he knew every cuss word in the dictionary. I have been hunting over Springer Spaniels ever since. My training has improved over the years and I attended my first field trial in the late 90’s. The rest as they say is history. I started shooting field trials a few years later and have had more success as a field trial gunner than I have had as a handler. Currently I am looking for a new puppy so maybe the future will hold a couple ribbons for me.

I have had the pleasure of shooting many trials in the great province of Alberta and know the Calgary club will put on a great National for everyone to enjoy.

Looking forward to seeing you all there, and wish the best of luck to all competitors and their dogs.




DAN BERLEMONT

It is with the utmost appreciation that on behalf of the Calgary English Springer Spaniel Club, the participants and for all who have handed me the honor and trust of being one of your guns for this event. The passion for this breed, if not bordering on addiction runs through my veins as it does for pretty much all who own, train, trial, hunt and/or have the field bred Springer as a companion.

I was a very young boy when I developed the desire for adventure and particularly for being out in the woods and fields. Though my father was not a hunter I had the inborn desire to be in the outdoors and stalked many a critter. From the very first time I started hunting for deer and small game I wanted to be able to hunt with dogs. This first started in the 70s where I was introduced to beagles and bunny hunting; a passion that still runs through my veins. In 1990 I was introduced to Jamie Armour after spending some time in the field with another’s English Springer hunting birds. That pretty much set the pattern for me from then to the present. Though I was always proficient with deer hunting and shooting I seemed to have a thing for preferring hunting with a dog. I got my first Springer from Jamie and from there the rest is history still enjoying the wild hunt along with trial judging, handling, wing shooting trials and just simply enjoying having them in my daily life routines. They represent living life and perpetual optimism.

Best to all the competitors and enjoy the flush, find and fetch.




DAN DENNIS

Thanks to the Calgary Club for the invitation to serve with the gun team at the 2017 National. I was a long time member of the Saskatchewan Club, prior to its demise, and acted in most capacities.

I live at Regina Beach and have raised as many as 800 pheasants per year. I very much enjoy working with all types of dogs and handlers in there quest to produce this most elusive quarry.

Along with the help of the entire gun team,I intend to assist dog and handler to perform at their highest level.

Very much looking forward to seeing you all,and I wish everyone a great National Field Trial!




GRANT KIRKUP

It is an honour to be asked to be a gunner at the 2017 National Championship.

I have hunted over field dogs for over 50 years. I have trained many dogs from three different breeds. As a tremendous fan of upland hunting, spaniels were my favorite!!

Some of my most enjoyable days in the field, whether hunting sharptail grouse, Huns or pheasants, were over my dogs…a pair of springers. Incredible enjoyment!

Due to work commitments and a move from my native Manitoba to Alberta, my time in the field each fall went from 3-4 times per week to twice a month. It was at that time I became hooked on sporting clay shooting….and hooked I have been!

I train extensively with my shotgun for 10 months of the year. I am fortunate to own 16 automatic clay target throwers along with various other pieces of shooting equipment. I train by replicating problem shots until I am comfortable with that shot. This helps me stay proficient with the shotgun. I also attend shooting competitions across the United States and parts of Canada. I have represented Canada at the World FITASC championship. In addition, I also bird hunt over dogs in the fall.

After safety, my focus is to be an extension of the dog and handler. My strategy is to work as hard at putting the bird down in the right spot as the dog works at flushing the bird…this allows the dog to show off his/her abilities as to why they should be the champion.

I am a professional accountant. Although I was in public practice for 25 years, my professional life is comprised of interests in the residential and commercial glass industry along with consulting engagements.

I wish all dogs every success at the National Championship.




KEVIN REINHART

I was born and raised in Kitchener, Ontario and still reside there with my wife Monica and our three springer spaniels. My love for springer spaniels began in 1990 when we got our first puppy from Mel Wolfe. It was a pleasure to be able to learn, train and shoot for Mel.

I attended my first field trial competition not long after this, and thought it was quite an interesting activity. Over the last twenty six years, I have always had good spaniels to hunt over and am currently trialing one spaniel that has had placements in open and amateur trials. I have a younger spaniel up and coming as well.

During this period, I took some time off from dog training as I was quite involved with skeet shooting. I first began my shooting career with American skeet, and not long after, discovered International skeet. I shot International skeet and worked my way up to become a member of Canada’s National Skeet Shooting Team for several years. I also trained with the U.S. Army Skeet Team in Fort Benning Georgia. I have travelled extensively to attend many world cup and world championships in this sport. My ultimate goal was the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, however, coming very close to this goal, it did elude me. I still enjoyed every step along the way as meeting people and seeing different countries was a great experience.

I thoroughly enjoy running dogs, training dogs and shooting field trials. It is truly an honor for me to be asked to shoot the open nationals this year and I would like to thank the Calgary Spaniel Club for asking me to do so.

I would like to wish the best of luck to all handlers and their dogs.




JOHN MEYER

Over the years my role and participation in field trials has evolved from training and competing to other aspects of the sport. In my younger years I planted field trials including a National trial and as a teen I began shooting for puppy stakes. This allowed me to have the privilege of being invited to shoot in over 300 field trials across the nation including eight National Championships so far and again this year for three National Championships.




TIM EISMANN

My extremely patient and understanding wife Patti and I live just outside of Spruce Grove, Alberta with our springer spaniel and cat. With an acreage to maintain and some major and never ending renovations going on it is hard to find the time to get away trialing every year but somehow I manage; thus the extremely patient and understanding wife.

My first experience with springer spaniels was in 1979 when Eryl Dingman invited me to help out at a training session. After a summer of training I was asked to help gun the E.S.S.C. fall Trial and did well enough that I became a permanent member of the gun team. After three or four years of shooting local trials under Eryl’s watchful eye I was asked to accompany him to Winnipeg , where my education continued with Merv Walker, Bert Butler and Larry Butler . Soon after I was invited to Calgary to gun with, and learn from some of the best guns ever in Jack Porter, Ed Anderson, Ian Holmes and Bert Kutos.

I have lost track of how many trials and nationals I have gunned over the years but I do remember some amazing dogs, meeting a lot of great people and making some lifelong friends.

It is always an honour to be asked to participate in a national and have the privilege of gunning for these great dogs.

Best of luck to all the participants at the 2017 National.




AARON DINGMAN (ALTERNATE)

As long as I can remember, I have been around the springer spaniel field trial game. I regularly attended training sessions and field trials at a very young age; initially as a kid observer and collecting bottles at trials, eventually graduating to shagger and planter, and finally becoming a student of field trial gunning.

Growing up just outside of Edmonton, I was fortunate to have the opportunity to be around many great dogs and handlers from various western clubs, and the chance to spend time with many great gunning mentors like my father Eryl Dingman, my uncle Tim Eismann as well as many other great field trial gunners like Ed Anderson, Jack Porter, and Arley Elliot.

I have had the privilege of gunning numerous field trials each year over the past 19 years throughout Canada and the western United States; with the exception of a couple of years while I was finishing Chiropractic College, and practicing chiropractic in the southern United States.

Since moving back to Canada, I have been practicing chiropractic in central Alberta where I own a practice in Red Deer and a satellite clinic in the small, west central foothills, town of Caroline. I live in the small town of Penhold just outside of Red Deer with my fiance Liane, two dogs and cats. It is here where we enjoy as much of the lifestyle and outdoor opportunity in central Alberta our busy lives can afford.

In the past, I have had the privilege of gunning a handful of both the Canadian Amateur Nationals and Canadian Open All Age Nationals. I am very honored and excited to have been asked to gun the Canadian Open All Age National this fall. It has been a dream of mine for years to gun an Open All Age National in my home privince of Alberta, and I consider it a privilege to shoot for some of the best flushing spaniels in North America.