Victory For The Netherlands As Gundog Handler Team Wins Prestigious International Competition

A team of four gundog handlers from the Netherlands and their dogs have scooped the top prize at one of the world's most prestigious gundog competitions, the Kennel Club Gundog Working Test International Retriever Team Event, sponsored by Judge's Choice and held at the Chatsworth estate in Derbyshire.

The winning team comprised Ingrid van de Ven, Elly Bos, Rob Schmidt and Roy Ehbel and their respective dogs, Bubbles van de Vaortkaant, Saxaphone John Smiths, Cerbel Ambassador, and Int. and B. FT Ch Go Back Fyne; all Labrador Retrievers.  They beat off competition from some of the world's most talented working gundogs and their handlers, from nine other countries, impressing the judges with their retrieving ability, both on land and in water.

Netherlands Team Captain, Roy Ehbel, said: "We've had a wonderful two days at Chatsworth for the International Retriever Team Event.  This is a very big, important event for us and we did it as a team so are very happy.

"We would like to thank all of the competitors who took part, particularly the UK and German teams as a victory only feels good if there are good competitors competing against you."

Also performing well at the event, the German team was awarded second place, and the UK, who came first in last year's competition, secured third place.  The Best Individual Dog award was given to the UK team's Labrador Retriever, Slipside Danzy Jones.

Kennel Club Secretary, Caroline Kisko, said: "The Netherlands team did brilliantly to triumph over such stiff competition and they should be very proud of themselves.  Their hard work has obviously paid off and the team work and bond we saw between the dogs and their handlers was fantastic.

"To beat nine other international teams of exceptional quality is no mean feat and we congratulate Roy and his team on winning the International Retriever Team Event.  The Germany and UK teams should also be very proud of themselves, and we wish them a long and successful career in the sport.

"This competition fits well with the Kennel Club's 'Fit For Function, Fit For Life' campaign and aims to assess the working abilities of different gundog breeds.  It is all about the dogs putting their natural instincts to good use to work well for their handlers, and the Chatsworth estate is the perfect place for it, with woodland, moors, lakes and walls that can all be used in the retrieves."

The winning teams comprised:

1st - The Netherlands

  • Labrador Retriever Bubbles Van De Vaortkaant (3rdplaced dog individually), owned and handled by Ingrid van de Ven
  • Labrador Retriever Saxaphone John Smiths, owned by J Geeruliet and Elly Bos and handled by Elly Bos
  • Labrador Retriever Cerbel Ambassador (2ndplaced dog individually), owned and handled by Rob Schmidt
  • Labrador Retriever Int. and B. FT Ch Go Back Fyne, owned and handled by Roy Ehbel

2nd- Germany

  • Labrador Retriever Lockthorn Topper, owned and handled by Gunther Kohler
  • Labrador Retriever Balu Oscar Vom Alten Trappisten Kloster, owned and handled by Beale Perick
  • Labrador Retriever Lost and Found Bo, owned and handled by Michael Zintl
  • Labrador Retriever Dave Von Der Steinmauer, owned and handled by Doris Albrecht

3rd- UK

  • Labrador Retriever FT Ch & Irish FT Ch Apache Joe, owned and handled by Thomas Hughes
  • Labrador Retriever Slipside Danzy Jones (Best Individual Dog), owned and handled by Nigel Probert
  • Labrador Retriever Abergowan's Harris, owned and handled by Ally Kennedy
  • Labrador Retriever FT Ch Asterix Aguzannis of Chatsworth (4thplaced dog individually), owned by Lady Celina Carter and handled by John Halsted

The teams that competed in the International Retriever Team Event at the Kennel Club Gundog Working Test were Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Switzerland, the UK and, for the first time, Finland.

Working gundog activities are perfect for anyone with a love and understanding of the countryside.  To find out more, visit  More about the Kennel Club Gundog Working Test, sponsored by Judge's Choice, can be found at

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