The Welsh National sheepdog trials saw its youngest ever captain crowned at Dinefwr Park, Llandeilo.

After three days of competition 25-year-old Arwyn Davies, of Bryneglwys, came top of the pack in the championship run-off between three north Walians.

The event, which had 150 singles entries and five brace competitors, attracted huge crowds to the National Trust-owned country park.

A parade of handlers through Llandeilo town heralded the start of the event the evening before the first day of competition. It was led by the town’s Mayor Owen James with families lining the streets waving Welsh flags to greet the competitors.

Mr James also presented the trophies at the presentations and said: “What a weekend. From the parade on the Thursday night to the final run on Sunday evening, it’s been a delight to be part of it. You simply can’t ask for a better setting than Dinefwr Park, an asset to the town.”

The top five from each day qualified for the Welsh team and they will compete at the International trial in Scotland in September. The three winners from each day went head-to-head in the final to decide the Welsh captaincy.

Winning with his six-year-old bitch Peg, Arwyn said he was delighted with his achievement but couldn’t quite believe it.

“It will probably sink in in a couple of days,” he said.

This is the third time Arwyn has been in the Welsh team. His dad Bryn narrowly missed out on a place, but another father and son pairing will be travelling to Scotland.

Kevin Evans, of Brecon, qualified with Hybeck Blake and also won the brace championship with Derwen Doug and Knockmaa Bec. Kevin’s dad David qualified with two dogs, Kemi Maid and Lass.

The reserve champion was first time National entrant, Beate Behr. Beate, of Lansannan, has been living and trialling in Wales for four years. She’d had a good run with Breeze on the second day, but it was with Bendigedig Leni that she won the third day and was second in the run-off. She also won the Challis Shield for the highest placed Welsh bred dog or bitch.

Third place went to day one winner Arwel Owen, of Penygroes, with nine-year-old Glenys. Arwel was presented with Ceredigion Jubilee Cup, awarded to the highest placed shepherd.

As well as the trial there were lots of tradestands, a craft and food marquee and visitors were also given free entry to Newton House.

The Welsh National was the first of the ISDS’ (International Sheep Dog Society) four home nations Nationals. The International will be staged in Brechin, in Aberdeenshire from September 13-15.

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