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news - 16/04/2016
BRABO 2016  -  Belgium

dogs breeders dog pictures by Karl Donvil
BRABO 2016, 50th edition. Last year the euphoria about the unequaled success of the Brabo show turned this year in a big frustration. There was a loss of 30% and no direct reason was to be found. The number of entries dropped from 2439 to only 1688. Brabo's 50th edition was no Crufts qualifier like last year, but that can explain the success of last year but is not the only reason for this year's drop back. It is clear that more entries were expected. The 10 Miles of Antwerp were on the very same day and that could affect the number of visitors, but not the exhibitors number. In fact the committee was not unhappy about the public interest as that was not too bad. The podium was rearranged for the better, less distracting disorder behind the new podia made a big change. Between the prejudging ring and the prize table and podium was a huge black curtain with led lights, alike Crufts, Brussels and many other big shows. Around the main ring several live size statues of Great Danes were guarding the ring. For the first time there was Live streaming video of the main ring, seen from 4 different angles that could be chosen and a photo of every BOB was taken, all nice improvements. During the day there were several entertaining demonstrations of the disciplines at Brabo's dog school and 16 rings were available for the judging. As every year people could take a seat in the large cafetaria, eat Belgian Frites, Icecream or have a good pint of Belgian Beer.

While the dogs were coming from 17 countries, 937 from Belgium, 385 from The Netherlands, 136 from France, 90 from Germany and 41 from the United Kingdom and even 2 from Greece, 2 from Spain and one from Russia, the judges were representing only 10 nationalities, notwithstanding 27 were invited. That has to do with the policy of the club that the panel of judges needs to consist out of minimum 50% of Belgian judges. As Belgium is rather small and shows getting bigger and more frequent, it is always difficult to find judges for certain breeds that did not judge the breeds recently, etc. The pool of judges is maybe large, but we have relatively few group judges and certainly few all rounders and as other shows invite them too, it can be really complex to compose a good panel of judges. Maybe that was the problem here. People want change and challenge. People know their chances with most Belgian judges. They have entered their dogs probably before or seen who won on other shows. From the 27 judges, 13 were judging Saturday and Sunday while 14 were judging one day only. That does not need to prove anything but if we look at the average number of entries we arrive at only 42,2 per judging day. In my opinion a good balance would be 50 dogs/judging day. Luxembourg spring 2016 has a rate of 69/JD (Judging Day), Brussels 2015 had 71,44/JD and Leuven 2015 even 85,64 !! Maybe it would be better to no longer stick to the 50/50 principle and compose a good list full of attractive surprises and fill the gaps with local judges or give chances to new judges. It makes things less complex.

Giving the French Bulldogs to Mr.Piet Roosenboom was probably a good choice. He had 40 on Saturday and 91 along with all the other breeds and he was also the best scoring breed on Saturday. Mr.G.Van Den Bosch , also from Belgium, had 62 entries. His 31 Pomeranians were a proof that this breeds is fast growing in popularity. Mrs.Solecky from Poland had the Chihuahuas, 56 both varieties, and that made her finish her Saturday with 72 entries. Mr.Kanas from Slovenia had 52 entries on Saturday, including the Chinese Crested Dogs who were 41 all together. On Sunday he judged Staffordshire Bull Terriers, American Staffordshire Terriers and Bull Terriers and that was good for 73 in total. He was the best scoring judge of the show. Mr. A.Zeppi from Italy had only 26 dogs on Saturday but on Sunday, on the contrary, he had 90 entries. He did all the Dachshunds, the Cane Corsos and the Logotto Romagnolos. Mrs. L. Van Genechten was invited to judge a lot of dogs from Group 7 (Pointers) and Group 8 (Retrievers and waterdogs) and had a total of 82. She is from Belgium and relatively new.

Mrs.Mariette Van Herle , vice president of the Club, was granted the honor to judge Best In Show. Five were placed, the remaining five were all 6th ex-aequo. A good idea! Placing only 3 was even good enough, that makes all the other 4th ex-aequo. Her 3rd place went to the very nice and impressive Pyrenéan Mountain Dog "Vi'skaly's Ti-Ti-Oo" and is co-owned by the Ingela Mattison-Sanström from Sweden and Elsje Holtappels-Baert from Belgium. 5The dog is Swedish bred and was entered in Intermediate Class at less than 2 years of age. Mrs.Radziuk from Bellarus was the breed judge, Mr.Van Den BOsch from Belgium the Group judge. The Nice Yorkshire Terrier "Hunderwood Heritage", was a choice of Mrs.Monique Van Brempt who was in charge of the breed and the Group. Heritage was entered in Champion Class and will be 4 years in November. He is bred, owned and shown by Eric Bernard from France. Winning dog is the very same dog that won Best In Show in Brussels 2013, Hoogstraten 2014, Genk LKV 2014, Hoogstraten 2015, Libramont 2015, Leuven 2015 and Gent 2016. It is famous "Beardie Connections Kenji" from Otto Rinus from HOlland and proudly bred by Mrs. Ingrid Hectors, wife of Brabo's president Mr.Guido Surinckx. 20 Beardies were entered for Mr.Francis from Ireland. Mrs.Radziuk was in charge or the Group judging. Kenji is now 5 years old and still has not enough of winning BIS titles. Curious to see where he will end next year? Note 22 and 23 of April in your agenda and enter your dog(s).

Text and photos: Karl DONVIL

Results: KV Brabo and Karl DONVIL

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