The best working dogs compete for $ 20,000 in the Carcoar challenge


Ben Coster is looking forward to racing Coopendale Lucy in the Carcoar Working Dog Challenge.

AUSTRALIA’s best sheep and cattle working dog handlers will compete for the country’s biggest purse of $ 20,000 in a series of events in Carcoar in November.

Organizers have said the trials and auction at the inaugural Central Tablelands Livestock Exchange (CTLX) Working Dog Challenge are set to bring the country’s best dogs to Carcoar from Friday November 26 through Sunday November 28.

Interest in the event has already been remarkable, with 50 dogs ready to go under the hammer in the auction; and 300 nominations in hand for cattle, sheep and backyard dog proofs.

RLX Regional Manager for New South Wales Brock Syphers said the auction would help meet the growing demand for working dogs and it was hoped the three-day event would become a heritage event.

“The auction and the trials give working dog breeders the opportunity to promote their best genetics and showcase their well-trained dogs in both competition and sales circles.

“We intend for the Working Dog Challenge to become an annual event for CTLX, and producers can mark the date on their calendar as an opportunity to sell or get great working dogs.”

Mr Syphers said they received incredible interest in the Sire’s Shoot-out event, in which working dog stallions would compete against each other in a trial under the lights on Friday night.

“All the stallions participating in this competition will also enter a dog in the sale.

“It’s not often that you see the lines you want to bid on, so it will be a remarkable competition,” he said.

Wandabar Stockdogs Director Ben Coster at Yass said the $ 20,000 prize made the event very exciting.

He uses Kelpies to manage 8,000 breeding ewes and 800 cattle on ‘Brooklands’ and is preparing to compete in all three competitive disciplines over the weekend.

“With so much money on offer, the cream will make it to the top, and the best dogs and competitors will meet at CTLX.”

Looking at his eight dog strong competition team, Mr. Coster said he was very excited to test Coopendale Lucy, his eight year old Kelpie who has won open championships in the past.

“I take part in three events of sheep, yard and cattle.

“You need a versatile and intelligent dog to compete in multiple disciplines,” he said.

“Realizing it all starts with breeding them, and I’m looking for dogs that can be strong enough to work cattle, and then soft and large enough to gently work sheep as well.”

Mr Coster said the demand for trained working dogs has never been higher, as finding qualified staff can be a challenge.

“Two or three dogs can be an incredible help when you are understaffed on a property,” he said.

Given the buoyant livestock markets, Tom Card of the Bowyer and Livermore agency said he expects good results from the auction, while the online sales service offered by StockLive will attract a buying pool. which would expand nationwide.

“The Central Tablelands region is renowned for the quality of breeding and the versatility of the dogs. This exciting new initiative that RLX and B&L have taken on board will allow these breeders to showcase their dogs on a national stage, ”said Mr. Card.

“It is an important selling point for producers to be able to get a dog capable of working both cattle and sheep in the paddock and yards. “

Mr Syphers said preparations were already underway at CTLX to host the new event, with special competition yards under construction.

“I anticipate this will be a great weekend for the community as we will have food, drink and music available on both evenings,” he said.

“Of course, the event will take place under the necessary COVID-19 restrictions, as the safety of those attending our facility is our first priority.”

For more information, visit the Working Dog Challenge Trial and Sale Facebook page.

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