What is the term "stake" mean in field trials?

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JonBailey
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What is the term "stake" mean in field trials?

Post by JonBailey » Fri Jun 22, 2018 5:14 pm

A cash reward?

What exactly is a Puppy Stake or a Novice Stake?

Is there a "Field Trials for Dummies" book?

What is the ultimate "Gun Dog Competitions 101" book to read?

I want to learn about all those fancy title abbreviations on pedigrees and learn what the devil they all mean in the REAL WORLD.

Like a bunch of decorations on a veteran soldier's uniform, they are numerous and seem quite confusing and complicated to the uninitiated.

What does "FC" (field champion) mean to a duck hunter with a retriever?

What does "MH" (master hunter) really mean to a prospective bird dog pup buyer? Why should I care?

Does FC or MH on pedigrees promise I will have a good bird dog in the field or in the blind with the barrel of a shotgun over him?
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Sharon
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Re: What is the term "stake" mean in field trials?

Post by Sharon » Fri Jun 22, 2018 6:57 pm

It can be confusing as there are several different trialing or testing organizations with different criteria/rules to be judged by.
The group you participate with with ( stake) depends on the age of the dog + other possible criteria. . Puppy stake is a dog up to a certain age. Novice stake is for handlers who have never placed in a stake. As the dog gets older it may be trained enough to participate in Derby stakes , Shooting Dog stake or an All age stake, in American Field trials. There are stakes for amateurs ( never won money or placed )in an event too.

FC is a Trial designation. Pretty super dog to win a Championship.

MH is a TEST designation. One can participate in tests or trials. A dog with a MH designation may be a good hunter but he ain't no Champion. :)

Never seen a book explaining all the different kinds of events; you have to google each kind. Retriever test/trials have completely different expectations than pointing breed trials.


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JonBailey
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Re: What is the term "stake" mean in field trials?

Post by JonBailey » Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:05 pm

So a STAKE is a trialing CLASSIFICATION or LEVEL?

Like little league vs collegiate vs minor league vs major league baseball?

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Re: What is the term "stake" mean in field trials?

Post by shags » Sat Jun 23, 2018 5:37 am

Yes, stake is another name for a class.

As Sharon said, stakes are classifications based on age or level of finish. In pointing breed trials, there are "juvenile stakes" for young dogs...puppies and derbies. Age limits apply and vary by format. Then come adult dog or broke stakes, gun dog, shooting dog, or all-age, requiring finished performance and varying levels of range and independence. You'll have to look up about teteivers, I know zip but generally the same idea. Stakes can be amateur, for amateur handlers only, or open, where pros as well as ammies can enter.

You might hear about "money stakes". That means the award is a cut of the entry fees that goes to the winners. It's up to the club or organization to decide if they want to offer money stakes or not.

To become a field champion, dogs must meet certain criteria of a record of winning. In FDSB trials, a dog is a Ch if he wins a championship stake. In AKC trials, dogs must accumulate points gathered by winning several stakes, with the number of points based on the number of dogs defeated. Win over 3 other dogs, one point. Win over 25, five points ( the max points for a stake).

Trials are judged subjectively with dogs competing against each other, and all dogs expected ro come close to a written standard of performance.

In tests, dogs are judged against a standard, but not against each other. It's pass/fail, more or less. So in a trial, there is one winner and several placements of runner yps. In tests, all the dogs might pass, or all might fail.

In AKC tests, there are junior hunters for dogs with basic training, seniors for almost fully trained dogs, and master hunters for completely finished dogs. Some organizations offer testing programs, others do not.

When a dog completes the requirements, he is awarded a certificate by the governing body under which auspices he competed, and then on pedigrees, if he is bred, the titles show up. There isn't much recognition of titles between organizations though, so on an FDSB pedigree you won't see that a dog has earned an MH or FC (field champion) title from AKC. Likewise, a CH from FDSB won't show up on an AKC pedigree. I'll note here that in AKC, CH means show champion.

Most governing bodies have their requirements written somewhere, so you can search and find the specific ones that interest you. For AKC go to their website and look under Events. For FDSB trials, look at the AFTCA (amateur field trial clubs of America) website for their guidelines. There is several other formats as well, and also for retreivers and spaniels.

When you read the guidelines/rules, they will be clear as mud but will give you a general idea. Best to find an event that you can attend, and observe. IME someone will be willing to answer your questions...but also IME you have to talk to several people because everyone has their own ideas about how the performance standards should be met.

I think it's great that there is a dog game for just about everyone, and almost anyone can find something competitive to do with their dogs. It's just a matter of finding the right fit. It might take a few tries to figure out which format is right for you, but it's fun to go watch and check things out.

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Re: What is the term "stake" mean in field trials?

Post by birddogger2 » Sat Jun 23, 2018 2:12 pm

The term "stake" refers to a specific trial or test event. In American Field sanctioned events(pointing dogs only) where the results are appended to the dog's FDSB pedigree, there are Open stakes and Amateur stakes. As may be gathered by the titles, Amateur is restricted to Amateur handlers and Open stakes are open to both pros and amateurs.

There are also several "classes" of stakes. There are Puppy and Derby stakes, for dogs up to certain ages, again both Open and Amateur. For adult dogs there are Shooting dog stakes and All Age stakes. The judgment standard for shooting dog stakes leans more toward the dog that is hunting for the gun while the All age judicial standard is more geared toward the "extreme" athlete which exhibits the most independent, far-reaching search.

In AF puppy, derby and shooting dog, there are both horseback and walking stakes. All age stakes are all horseback stakes, except for those held on grouse. Certain other groups, notably the US Complete SDA, the NBGHA and ABHA sponsor and sanction strictly walking stakes. Most stakes are 30 minutes in length, except championship stakes which are a minimum of one hour in length...or longer.

Of course there are AF championship stakes, both horseback and walking, both Open and Amateur.

There are also AKC field events(stakes) which are similar to, but separate and different from AF events(stakes). Most are 1/2 hour in length.

There are Puppy, Derby, Gun Dog and All Age stakes, both Open and Amateur where the Gun Dog(in MY personal opinion) standard of judgment hews closer to what might be expected of a hunting dog and the All Age stakes, which (again in my area and in my personal opinion) are closer to the AF shooting dog standard of performance.

One of the biggest differences between the AF and the AKC is in how field championships are awarded.

In AF championship competitions, the length of the heats is one hour at a minimum and the champion is the best dog of those that are entered at that trial.

In AKC pointing dog competitions, dogs get points for placing in 30 minute stakes, with the number of points awarded depending on the number of dogs that ran in that particular stake. A dog must accumulate 10 points to be declared either and FC(Field Champion) or AFC(Amateur FC). This means that the dog must typically place first in several stakes.

As has been stated previously, all placements at field trials are based on the performance of the dogs, that day, as measured against the standard of performance for that stake and against each of the dogs that ran in that stake with the best dogs being awarded first second third or fourth(AKC only), or in AF competitions, Ch.(Champion).

In AKC there are also Retriever trials, which I do not know much about.

In Hunt tests, of which there are several types, AKC, Navhda, etc. The dogs are judged against a written standard, in several categories(skills) and given a numerical score in each required skill.

in AKC hunt tests, there is a Junior Hunter event(or stake), a Senior Hunter event and a Master Hunter event, each with increasing levels of required performance. All handlers must walk at hunt tests... horseback handling is not permitted under normal circumstance. The most obvious difference is that the Hunt test dogs are not judged against each other but judged against a defined standard and if they pass...they pass. If not...not. There are several categories and the dog must show a satisfactory level of skill in each category to pass.

There is a whole lot more detail to all of this, but hopefully I have not confused you further.

RayG

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JonBailey
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Re: What is the term "stake" mean in field trials?

Post by JonBailey » Sun Jun 24, 2018 12:35 am

I think I like the notion of competing in Hunt Tests better than I would Field Trials.

If my dog were to have any titles in his lines reflecting field trial awards, as FC, it would probably be a boon.

I think FC is always a coveted title to have on pedigrees.

For retrievers, Master Hunting Retriever, sounds cool too.
"Let Hercules himself do what he may, the cat will mew and dog will have his day." - William Shakespeare

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Re: What is the term "stake" mean in field trials?

Post by birddogger2 » Sun Jun 24, 2018 7:59 am

JonBailey wrote:I think I like the notion of competing in Hunt Tests better than I would Field Trials.

If my dog were to have any titles in his lines reflecting field trial awards, as FC, it would probably be a boon.

I think FC is always a coveted title to have on pedigrees.

For retrievers, Master Hunting Retriever, sounds cool too.
If you look at what it takes for a dog to earn either and FC or an AFC, you will begin to understand just how special an animal it is or was. The vast majority of dogs of whatever breed never achieve that level of performance...let alone demonstrate that level, under judgment... on multiple occasions.

Same with Senior or Master Hunter titles. different requirements, but the dog still has to demonstrate the a very high level of performance...not once but multiple times while under judgment.

Make no mistake... the ability of a dog to demonstrate excellence when in the cauldron of competition requires a special animal...one with a ton of drive and focus... as well as talent. It is a whole lot harder for a dog to perform on strange grounds in front of strange folks than it is to do the same on home grounds in front of just their master.

To most...these titles mean that those dogs, and to a large extent... the progeny of those dogs... have been born with the genetic ability to perform at the highest level. Soooo, to the extent that the genetics hold up, you have a puppy that was born with ALL the tools to become a fine hunting dog.

RayG

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Re: What is the term "stake" mean in field trials?

Post by crackerd » Mon Jun 25, 2018 8:58 am

JonBailey wrote:So a STAKE is a trialing CLASSIFICATION or LEVEL?

Like little league vs collegiate vs minor league vs major league baseball?
If you're asking about retrievers, as your other posts indicate, you can throw out a lot of the birddog info you've been given. For example, there is no "money stake" in retriever FTs - at best, as a winner, you get a 75 cent blue ribbon for all your trouble. Likewise for retriever hunt tests, you get a rosette for passing. Also, only AKC sanctions retriever field trials - unless you're in Canada, and CKC would be the governing body. No other sanctioning bodies. Retriever hunt tests are different in that three different orgs. put them in the US - the "Master Hunting Retriever" you threw out there is in fact a NAHRA (North American Hunting Retriever Association) title. Hunting Retriever Club's comparable title is...Hunting Retriever Champion (HRCH). AKC's is Master Hunter - or if you pass AKC's Master National Test three (or maybe four) times in a row, the title would be MNH (Master National Hunter).

As for field trial stakes, there is a slight, ok, maybe general resemblance to what the birddoggers have told you. An AKC retriever field trial has four stakes, two major stakes (Amateur and Open, both considered "All-age" stakes) and two minor stakes (qualifying and derby, both ostensibly for young dogs on their way up. Derby is limited to dogs not yet having turned two years old - qualifying stakes, by some sort of gentleman's agreement, usually has as entries retrievers not older than five years.). Average age of retrievers in the Open and Amateur stakes is approximately 7.5 years old, which drawing on your Little League analogy, indicates how long it takes to get to the majors - major stakes - of retriever field trials.

MG

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