CRUFTS 2002 – TOY GROUP Report

During 2001 I had watched a number of Toy Groups at the general Ch. shows I attended and had often been impressed by the depth of quality often appearing in the Group ring.  Naturally I had hoped in my moments of reflection, that Crufts 2002 would produce an inspired display of judging from the breed judges so that I may enjoy my time in the big ring.

I was not disappointed.  I was lucky to have a super selection of Toys to pick from and such was the strength of the competition in the short list of 8, that I would have been proud & happy to have had  any  one of them as my winner, had those I placed not been there.  My thanks to the judges for choosing so wisely and  thus enabling me to be indulgent.

In truth it was difficult just to reduce the list to eight and a couple not selected will, I am sure, have better days.

Those short listed were the Australian Silky Terrier from Finland, Curiosity  Luxury of Silk, a quite beautiful example of the breed and so close up to being placed.  Stunning shape with a neck and topline which are like magnets to the eye. Presentation and condition immaculate, a real little terrier in attitude, on his toes throughout.  The CKCS  Ch. Lorankas Celebration  such a beautiful & classic head on this richly coloured blenheim dog.  His expression is so calm and gentle. Really well bodied and in tip top condition. Well bodied and holds himself well moving. The  Italian Greyhound Ch. Jemalsheva Hathor   is another right out of the top drawer.  One of my favourite toy breeds and this delightful bitch is a really beautiful example.  Shapely in body with a long lean head, delightful in expression and in profile circling the ring her action and backline can’t fail to impress. Like the others her condition was immaculate.  The Maltese Angels Vision for Khanthav (Imp) is, I believe, an import from the States and boy does she have style. Personality plus and she is so totally outgoing. Very compact in body, such a silky  jacket dazzingly white and contrasting so well with that very black pigmentation. Quite a handful on the move but a joy to go over.

4th place went to the L/c Chihuahua Ch. Bramerita Naughty But Nice a bubbling little person. Exemplifies breed type with her saucy outlook. Displays a  larger than life self confidence as she propels herself around the ring with that brisk, purposeful stride just demanding to be noticed  She is a lovely size and shape, excels in body, her back is level  and the tail set and carriage are exactly what is required. I am sure she stole many hearts.  3rd place went to a new face in the Yorkshire Terrier  Hassendean Royal Dancer.  I can’t imagine why this beautiful dog isn’t made up.  Looks every bit an Ozmillion in type from his delightful head, the absolutely true backline and bodyshape and he is quite the best moving of his breed I have seen for some time.  Importantly his colours are exceptional.  Steel blue in body and the fall lengthy, silky and clearly shaded.  In second place was the Pug Ch. Hattella Fresh Parsley - what a star.  In any normal era he would have been a Group winner.  I just love his head, every bit fits exactly as it should, the shape is right, the ears  so fine and small and his eyes and expression are quite beautiful.  Truly cobby and square in body, good forechest, tight front and strong hams.  His tail is ideally set and he is a joy to watch move. He never seemed to put a foot wrong and showed his heart out.

But the winner simply had to be the Pekingese Ch. Yakee A Dangerous Liason .  I have loved this dog since I first saw him.  He won the overall Puppy Stakes under me at Windsor and last year I gave him a CC & BOB at Bath.  Everything in this thickset little fellow fits so well. The body shape is a joy to the eye, he picks up heavy, his waist is clearly defined, his forelegs are heavily boned and today he showed the true peke cadence, unhurried & dignified with that gentle roll as he swept his way round the huge ring without ever faltering.  These are all plusses but it is in his head that the dream becomes a reality.  I have never seen a better head on a peke.  The true envelope shape with that wide skull, so flat and with width between the eyes.  The underjaw is wide, the nostrils large, open and his pigmentation is flawless. And the whole is framed by long, black tinted fringes on his ears.  But the eyes make it.  They are surely as close to perfection as you could hope for, large, crystal clear and dark and that almost imperious expression, belied only by the occasional gentle wag of that glorious plume as you approach him.  His coat presentation was impeccable and he could not have tried any harder to win. I’ve just watched him win Res. BIS and was very proud of his performance.

Indeed a class dog to win a superb Group at what still, for me, remains the greatest dog show in the World.

Albert Wight (Judge)