Sporting Group Part 2 | Group Judging (2018)

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Sporting Group Part 2 | Group Judging (2018)

PA: The Boykin Spaniel was developed in South Carolina in the early 1900s. This dark brown flushing Spaniel excels at swimming and retrieving. They are an energetic companion that can hunt all day and double as a family pet at night. The Boykin is the official state dog of South Carolina. This is Boykin Spaniel, number eight.

JASON HOKE: And for all you South Carolina fans, this is a dog to root for. This is a dog that actually hunted in duck marshes. So it became known as the dog who does not rock the boat because it was easy to pull into the boat when it was retrieving.

CHRIS MYERS: Now they have like webbed, some of them webbed- toed from working through the-- they swim like seals.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: It's great to hear the information of what the dogs were originally bred for and used for because that explains their shape, their size, their coat texture oftentimes. And that's something that we love to share with our audience.

JASON HOKE: Right. I mean, coming up, we have the Clumber. Obviously, you wouldn't pull that dog into a boat, just like this dog, so.

PA: The Clumber Spaniel is believed to have originated in France, but bred in England. And he takes his name from the county park [INAUDIBLE] of Nottinghamshire. Largest of land Spaniels, he's a methodical worker in the field, developed specifically for hunting upland game in dense cover. The Clumber is one of the first breeds shown here, at Westminster, and recognized by the AKC. This is Clumber Spaniel, number eight.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: Here we have Champion Clussexx Man of Steel, Angus, being shown by Erin Myers. This is another repeat best of breed winner.

CHRIS MYERS: Number three sporting dog in ranking.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: He's done very well this year. And he's a crowd favorite as you hear everyone cheering for him. He's just got such a lively, upbeat temperament.

JASON HOKE: And this dog was also bred by the gentlemen who won the fourth in the toy group, I believe, last night.


JASON HOKE: --with the English Troy.

CHRIS MYERS: One Best in Show win for the Clumber Spaniel.

Let's take a look back at this movement.


CHRIS MYERS: Looks tired, worn out already, the night's just beginning.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: No. He's full of energy, he's good.

JASON HOKE: Well, you know they were a slow worker and they ran with the hunters. They weren't a [INAUDIBLE].

PA: Cocker Spaniel evolved in America from the English Cocker and is the smallest of the sporting breeds. An upland bird gun dog, he derives his name from skill with Woodcock in the field, but also is an accomplished swimmer and retriever. In the show ring, Cockers compete in three color varieties, the black is the first of those varieties which includes both black and black with tan points. This is black Cocker Spaniel, number 33.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: This is Grant, who won his-- won American Spaniel Club this year. That's a very high award, very impressive. Being handled by Linda Pitts. You may remember she is the handler who showed Preston, number one dog. The famous Puli, last year, won the [INAUDIBLE] the year before, in 2016. And then got second last year, in 2017.

CHRIS MYERS: Cocker Spaniel has two best in show wins most recently going all the way back to 1941. Remember this-- the 140 second annual Westminster Kennel Club Show.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: And Linda won with a black Cocker, won the sporting group in 2011. So she's definitely been here before.

PA: The affectionate disposition and beautiful expression of the Cocker Spaniel have made it among the most popular companion dogs for a centuries. This is the ASCOB variety of Cocker Spaniel. ASCOB stands for Any Solid Color Other than Black and includes buffs and browns. This is ASCOB Cocker Spaniel, number 32.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: Of course, this is Striker. He was number three dog in the country for 2017, being handled by Michael Pitts. Nothing says love like having your husband and wife competing in the same group.

JASON HOKE: Exactly.

CHRIS MYERS: The day before Valentine's Day.


CHRIS MYERS: You know, the Cocker Spaniel one Best in Show win, that was back in the '50s. We talk about the great history of this event, the second longest running sporting event in our country.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: This dog is really moving out. This-- Striker was actually Best in Show at the AKC national championship this year. It's a great win for him.

JUDGE: So right around for me, please.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: Of course with this, as we said last night, you have a lot of coat in the show ring but you could certainly-- if you wanted a Cocker Spaniel in your family, you don't have to have as much coat at home. But it sure looks pretty.

PA: And this is the parti-color variety for Cockers that are two or more solid colors with one of those colors being white. This is parti-color Cocker Spaniel, number 30. Here we have a Ryder, who's number one parti-color this year.

JUDGE: Thank you. Down and back.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: We have a lot of number one dogs here this year, of course. And that's part of what Westminster is about is attracting the top dogs and making sure they all come here to New York so that we can have the wonderful opportunity of watching them.

CHRIS MYERS: And this breed won Best in Show, the only time, back in 1921. You know, when you think about this event, Jason--

JASON HOKE: It's a long history.

CHRIS MYERS: It begins what, 12 years after the Civil War, and the Madison Square Garden-- I mean basketball wasn't even invented.

JASON HOKE: Exactly. There was no sportscasting for basketball back then.


CHRIS MYERS: It became the fans of dogs in this competition. A little bit of energy there.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: Ryder's being handled by Lane Tarantino. It's champion Loma Point Dangerous Intentions.

JASON HOKE: Yeah, Chris, you said there's a lot of energy. They have to be a merry Spaniel so that's a great catch on your part there.

PA: The English Cocker Spaniel is descended from the original English Spaniel reported in the journals in the late 1300s. The English Cocker is a compactly built active merry sporting dog. Considered a large dog in a small package. In 1946, the English Cocker Spaniel became a separate breed from the Cocker Spaniel. This is English Cocker, number 15.

CHRIS MYERS: One of the oldest types. Jason, you talked about not only the bite, but the ears. There's a reason that they move them around to check the neck. And those ears, that's a lot of work, there.

JASON HOKE: Yeah, absolutely. But you know, the hair on the ears is to protect the ears and the ear canal so that debris doesn't get in when they're running in the field. So there is a purpose to it. It may look artificial, but there is a real reason for it.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: This is a wonderful breed and actually one that I'm going to be bringing into my home soon.

JASON HOKE: You're going to be a parent.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: Going to be a parent of an English Cocker Spaniel, and I'm really excited.

CHRIS MYERS: Which color? They come in 18 colors. Which one are you going with?

GAIL MILLER BISHER: Well, that's the tough part. But Gordon here, who is being handled by Kate Belter, is a 7 and 1/2 year old boy. And he is a certified therapy dog who visits nursing homes often and has lots of fans watching them tonight.

CHRIS MYERS: There's those ear in action.

JASON HOKE: That's great.

PA: The true beauty of the English Springer Spaniel is found in the expression of its original purpose. A companion gun dog used to flush or spring game. Springer's were the larger siblings of the smaller Cocker Spaniels and in 1902 were recognized as a separate breed. His kind, trusting nature brought him from the field into the home. This is an English Springer Spaniel, number 37.

JASON HOKE: Yeah, and you know, we talked about the purpose of these breeds. And when we say a Setter versus a Spaniel, a Setter would actually go and set and go low so that they can throw a net over the birds. And a Spaniel actually flushed the birds out so that they could shoot the bird.

CHRIS MYERS: A highly trainable breed for those purposes.

JASON HOKE: Yeah. They're so intelligent and so athletic. So you know, the combinations great.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: And they're wonderful show dogs. We saw earlier tonight, the best junior handler was showing a Springer Spaniel, who is similar--

JASON HOKE: Spirited just like this.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: Exactly. I think that shows what a happy, fun breed that is.

CHRIS MYERS: And you have both been junior handlers in your time.

JASON HOKE: Absolutely.

PA: Developed in the Midlands of England in the 19th century, the Field Spaniel is among the rarest of Spaniel breeds. A combination of beauty and utility, the Field Spaniel was versatile and intelligent, excelling in hunting, obedience, agility, or tracking, as well as the show ring. They are affectionate and devoted to their family. This is Field Spaniel, number 17.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: And this is one of the breeds that you judge, Jason. So I'm sure you're very familiar--

CHRIS MYERS: How would you judge here?

GAIL MILLER BISHER: --very familiar with this standard.

CHRIS MYERS: You both judged, have put in time as a judge.

JASON HOKE: And I'm sure when Beth was going over the head of this dog, it's a very unique head. The head is wider at the crown than the brow. And the head planes are actually not parallel so it's divergent.

CHRIS MYERS: Beth Sweigart, Elizabeth Beth Sweigart, our judge here, through this group. And this is Boston, who goes to school with the handler, Jessica Tebow, no relation to Tim. But actually goes to school with her handler as a teacher and hangs out with students.

JASON HOKE: That's wonderful.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: This champion, [INAUDIBLE] like no other.

PA: The Irish Water Spaniel is the sole surviving water dog of Britain and Ireland. He was one of the first breeds recognized in this country and was originally used exclusively as a waterfall retriever. His eager disposition, curly coat, and rat- like tail make him uniquely qualified for the task. This is Irish Water Spaniel, number 12.

- Thank you, sir.

JASON HOKE: This dog is the clown of the sporting group. There is no dog that has a temperament like this. He's a great dog.

CHRIS MYERS: You'll be hoping to get the chuckle [INAUDIBLE].

JASON HOKE: Absolutely. And you know, this dog has many unique features. It has the curly ringlet of hair. It has a top knot, which is pivotal in this breed with the loose rings. And it also has that rat tail that you see while it's walking away from us.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: And a very old breed, actually. They were entered at Westminster in the first year, 1877.

- Thank you, sir. Right around for me please.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: This is Lilah, being handled by Gregory Sinner.

CHRIS MYERS: Member of the Spaniel family, there were four of these in that first ever event in 1877 that you refer to, Gail.

JASON HOKE: And Beth's done very well in Westminster with this breed so she's very well equipped to judge the dog.

CHRIS MYERS: Don't tell-- yeah, they know where the cameras are.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: Oh, beautiful. Look at her.



PA: The Sussex Spaniel gets his name from the county of Sussex in England were it almost certainly originated as one of the oldest distinct Spaniel breeds. The dog is a slow, close working gun dog that is especially valuable in heavy brush. The Sussex's cheerful and affectionate nature is demonstrated by his almost constant wagging tail. This is Sussex Spaniel, number 11.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: Of course, we all remember Stump, who is a Sussex Spaniel that won Best in Show. But here, we have Bean. Bean is the number one Sussex this year and won his national specialty. He will be a crowd favorite, I am sure.

JASON HOKE: Well, and Mike brought up a great point. This is a heavy brush Spaniel and you can see why. It has a heavy, massive body with a long, low build that's able to push him through that low brush that's so thick and dense.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: That's right. So exactly, he was built, oh-- oh, my goodness.

CHRIS MYERS: Look at that pose.


CHRIS MYERS: That's the pose of the night.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: He's working it, he's working it.

JASON HOKE: You know, sometimes we ask him to stop four square and sometimes we ask him to sit up and beg the crowd.

CHRIS MYERS: He do that on his own? Or did he the bait, the doggy treat? That's a good move.

JASON HOKE: This breed loves to do that. It's a--

CHRIS MYERS: Crowd loves it.


CHRIS MYERS: That's great.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: We have a favorite.

CHRIS MYERS: A show stopper. OK. Lights, camera--

PA: The Welsh Springer Spaniel is relatively rare in this country but probably one of the oldest recognizable Spaniel breeds. Energetic and intelligent, hard working and water loving, he is a reliable showman and field dog. This is Welsh Springer Spaniel, number 17.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: Doug Johnson is handling a Champion Clussex one step ahead. Samba, and Doug is the breeder, owner, handler of course, of Clussexx Kennels.

JASON HOKE: Right. And he also bred the Clumber Spaniel and the English Toy. So he is quite a talented Spaniel and he's done it all. I mean, he's a great breeder.

CHRIS MYERS: What a challenge.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: Well, I think it's a numbers game. You get three dogs in the group, you're going to come out with a ribbon.

JASON HOKE: Yeah, he's got good odds.

CHRIS MYERS: But what a challenge through the Spaniels, just to separate. You talk about each one of them with a personality, standard, measured against--

PA: Spinone Italiano is an ancient Italian gun dog. He is an excellent pointer and readily retrieves from land or water. Tireless in the field, he is affectionate, gentle, and calm at home. The Spinone is only for owners with a sense of humor and a tolerance for wet beards. This is Spinone Italiano, number 10.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: Rather rustic, ancient breed.

JASON HOKE: Sure, absolutely. This dog came from Italy. And you can see by the dog, it has a beard. So you know, we think that is just a cute effect. That actually protected the head, the eyes. There's always a purpose to what we think is this frilly part of a dog, so.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: That's right. It's not just a-- it's not a beauty contest. It's based on what the dog was originally bred to do, and their features represent that.

CHRIS MYERS: But they have support keeping up their appearances.


CHRIS MYERS: I've seen the groomers at work.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: Adele being shown by Laura Reeves.

PA: The Vizsla is the pride of Hungary, cultivated and closely guarded by the Hungarian aristocracy until the end of World War II. The Vizsla hunts and points game birds and is bold and confident in the field. He is of medium build with a short, golden rust coat. Energetic and demanding of human interaction and readily adaptable to many activities. This is Vizsla, number 36.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: This is Roopa. And Vizslas are a very popular breed. Boomer Esiason is here with us tonight. And he says he owns a Vizsla. My husband wants a Vizsla. Everyone wants a Vizsla and I know why. They're beautiful to see, they're athletic breed.


GAIL MILLER BISHER: --such a wonderful temper.

CHRIS MYERS: Wonder who barks louder, the Vizsla or Boomer Esiason?

JASON HOKE: I've been around Vizslas a lot and they're not a particularly noisy dog. So I'm going to to with Boomer on that one.

CHRIS MYERS: We kid, we care. Vizsla won a win back in 1983 in this particular category.

PA: The Weimaraner was developed by a German nobleman and Weimar in the 1800s and was initially bred to hunt big game. When landholdings diminished, pointing guns dog gun stock was introduced and Weimaraners evolved into bird dogs. They are often referred to as the gray ghost. This is Weimaraner, number 10.

CHRIS MYERS: President Eisenhower owned this breed named Heidi. In fact, 32 of our US presidents had a dog at the White House as a pet. I think it was Harry Truman who said, if you want a friend in Washington, you better get a dog. And now we know what he means.

JASON HOKE: Right. Exactly. Some people need a lot of friends, I think.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: This is Champion's Camelot's, I'm a Traveling Man. Ricky's named after Ricky Nelson's song, "Traveling Man". Being handled tonight by one of its owners.

CHRIS MYERS: Ricky Nelson sang "Garden Party" also, right? We're going to have-- we're having a garden party.

JASON HOKE: That's right.

CHRIS MYERS: Madison Square style.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: Such an athletic-- look at the beautiful musculature of this dog. He's in excellent condition.

PA: The Wirehaired Pointing Griffon is an athletic, lively bird dog with a strong prey drive and a biddable temperament. It is a medium- sized dog with a harsh coat to protect it while hunting upland birds and waterfowl. The Griffon is a loyal, affectionate family companion and is adaptable to any task its owner asked it to perform. This is Wirehaired Pointing Griffon, number 19.

CHRIS MYERS: It's been called the four- wheel drive of hunting dogs.

JASON HOKE: Sure. Exactly. They're such a strong, powerful breed. And they're built a little differently. And when we talk about a Griffon, that actually means the beard and the facial hair. Yeah. We went back to that in the toy group the other day with the Brussels Griffon.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: This is Kit, being handled by Amy Rutherford. Kit has a senior hunt title and was awarded field dog of the year by its national club. It was really a great accomplishment.

PA: A completely separate breed from the Vizsla. The Wirehaired was developed from Vizslas and German Wirehaired Pointer stock. As a versatile hunting dog with a larger frame and a dense wire coat more suitable for cold weather hunting. Affectionate and loyal, it is an excellent companion for active families of all ages. This is Wirehaired Vizsla, number 10.

JASON HOKE: Once again, we have another dog that was bred to have a harder coat and to be have a little more substance to get through a little rougher terrain than its predecessor, the Vizsla.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: This is Dante, who is owned by Krissy Daniel. It's her first show dog.

JASON HOKE: Well, she's--

GAIL MILLER BISHER: I love those stories.

JASON HOKE: She's doing great then.


JASON HOKE: I wish my first show dog won at Westminster.

CHRIS MYERS: Just to get here, right? Imported from Hungary and born in France. Dante rounding out the sporting group. Elizabeth Sweigart, who has been watching with all of us, and each time, assessing her judgment.

JASON HOKE: And Beth's got a great eye, so she's going to do a wonderful job in this group. It's a daunting task with all the different types in here.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: And such a large-- I mean, there are a lot of you know, big numbers here, in this group. But--

JASON HOKE: She's ready to make her cut.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: She pulled out the Brittany with Diego Garcia.

JASON HOKE: And we got the Golden out. We have a chance. We have a chance.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: Oh, boy. Labrador Retriever.

JASON HOKE: And her breed, the Labrador.



CHRIS MYERS: The dogs respond to the signal.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: Striker, the Cocker.

CHRIS MYERS: Striker, with a national ranking, as you mentioned.

JASON HOKE: And here's our crowd favorite, Bean.


JASON HOKE: Spinone.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: Spinone, very nice.

JASON HOKE: And the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon.

CHRIS MYERS: From 32 down to 8.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: Pushes everyone back, take another look.

CHRIS MYERS: Remember, the winner here joins the four winners from the groups last night.

- OK. Around please. Ma'am.


JASON HOKE: And this is their last chance to impress the judge.


GAIL MILLER BISHER: The crowd starts to yell out breed names, their favorites. The Sussex Spaniel has been called out first.

JASON HOKE: Well, that's going to bring the house down for sure.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: Cocker Spaniel, Clumber Spaniel, and the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon. Now she'll take them around one more time, I think.

- The Sussex Spaniel's first.

CHRIS MYERS: And there's your winner. The Sussex Spaniel takes the sporting group.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: Bean has taken the sporting group. Champion Commands Full of Beans of [INAUDIBLE].

CHRIS MYERS: Jason, I know you pointed that out early, but Striker came in as one of those dogs that we thought might take this category.

JASON HOKE: Sure. If you go on rankings, the dog was the top-ranked sporting dog in the country. But you know, as we said, it's on the day and today, the judge chose another dog.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: And of course, second at Westminster is nothing to be disappointed about.

JASON HOKE: No, not at all, not at all. I think this is what drew here in, right here. Beautiful gait, lovely expression.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: He's in great condition. He really is in fabulous condition.

JASON HOKE: Beautiful dog in motion.

GAIL MILLER BISHER: The tail never stops.

CHRIS MYERS: A shiny coat and this pose, that says--

JASON HOKE: That says it all, right there. Put me in the winner's circle. I think we might have a repeat when he gets up on the podium.

CHRIS MYERS: So now our fifth group winner. Let's check in with Karyn.

KARYN BRYANT: Great. Thanks so much. Congratulations to you. Do you think this pose is what did it for you tonight?

- Well, it's part of his charm, right?

- Absolutely. So what does it mean to you to win the group tonight here at Westminster?

- Well, everything.

KARYN BRYANT: Absolutely everything. So now you have a few moments to prepare for Best in Show. What do you do between now and then?

- Just try to get him to relax and get ready for the next one.

KARYN BRYANT: Great. Well, congratulations to you. He's certainly already a fan favorite. Chris, Gail, back to you.

CHRIS MYERS: And that move is going to become famous--

JASON HOKE: Absolutely.

CHRIS MYERS: --if he makes it all the way. Jenny.