In a mesmerizing finale to the 2017 Continental Open All-Age Championship, held this past January at the historic Dixie Plantation in Greenville, Florida, a statuesque English Setter called “Jack” and consistent Pointer named “Mike” wowed the judges and gallery to emerge as Champion and Runner-Up Champion, respectively.
The 122nd running of the prestigious Continental, lasting 10 days, came down to the last brace of the final series. In the hotly contested, nearly two-hour callback, Awsum in Motion and Just Watch ran with class, style and stamina to top 74 all-age bird dogs. The pair searched independently and powerfully across the vast countryside in a cover-dense course looping through ponds and heavy timber. Masterfully handled by fellow pros and friends Luke Eisenhart of Albany, Georgia, and Jamie Daniels of Bronwood, Georgia, Jack and Mike finished with three quail finds each, but it was Jack who was far to the front when time expired, a fitting end to a grand performance.
“I came to see a show, and from the minute Jack and Mike were turned loose, they put on once-in-a-lifetime performances,” says judge Mike Jackson of Lafayette, Indiana. “Both dogs stood out for their hard drive, spot-on bird-finding ability, and smooth, crisp style, but Jack had just a touch farther range.”
“Jack is a bold, far-ranging dog who only stops to point game with a 12 o’clock tail and beautiful flag,” Eisenhart says. The third English Setter in history to win the esteemed event, Jack, a 4-year-old white-and-orange male, is co-owned by breeders Bill and Marge Ricci of Powhatan, Virginia, with John and Elizabeth Fort of Camden, South Carolina.
Daniels, who campaigns the 3-year-old white-and-liver male Pointer for owners Jack and Tracy Haines of Broomfield, Colorado, says, “Mike never faltered. He’s a magnificent, big-running dog with excellent focus. Both dogs were worthy of the title.”
Jack and Mike are fed Purina Pro Plan SPORT Performance 30/20 Formula.