GCH CH Tells Matrix Reloaded
Last Year’s Number One Hound, the American Foxhound, GCH CH Kiarry’s Pandora’s Box, will not be at Westminster. She retired after winning the Hound Group winner at 2013’s AKC/Eukanuba National Championship (AENC) in December. So here's our WWW (Whom to Watch at Westminster) for the Hound Group.
However, we’re expecting a lot of excitement in the Hound Group. First we have a trio of BIS winning Afghan Hounds that will make that breed ring one of this year’s hot tickets. 2013’s Number Three Hound, GCH CH Tells Matrix Reloaded, is this year’s Number One Hound so far, with five BIS already this year. Matrix was bred by Marie Louise Tell Collinge, owned by Missy Ann Galloway, and handled by Christian Manelopoulos.
GCH CH Exlysta Aries Ciel Noir
Last year’s Number Six Hound, GCH CH Exlysta Aries Ciel Noir, has two BIS, one RBIS, and five Hound Group Ones in the first four weeks of the year. Ryder was bred by Perry Rooks & Christine Anderson-Smith, who co-own Ryder with Sharon Ferraro and handler Phil Schafmayer.
GCH CH Thaon’s Wallstreet
GCH CH Thaon’s Wallstreet, is an owner handled dog that shows less frequently than the top dogs, but wins a lot of the big ones. He was Group Two at the AENC in December and won the Hound Group two of the four days during the giant Rose City Classic in Portland OR earlier this year. Wally was bred by Jay T Hafford & James P Blanchard, who co-own Wally with Debbie & JW Rogers.
While the glamorous sighthounds often dominate the Hound Group, this year’s judge, Douglas Johnson, likes his scenthounds. In the past year he has given Group Ones to the Basset Hound, GCH CH Topsfield-Sanchu Eenie Meenie Miney Moe, the Blood Hound, GCH CH Flessner's International S'Cess, and the Black & Tan Coon Hound, GCH CH Windbourne Hd Ranch King Of The Road. However, that is no guarantee that they will have an advantage next week. In fact, the Basset and the Coonhound are both from the west coast and may not even be entered.
GCH CH Topsfield-Sanchu Eenie Meenie Miney Moe
The Basset Hound, Tiger, was 2013’s Number Eight Hound with four BIS and 23 Hound Groups. Tiger was bred by Suzanne Sukey Shor & Claudia Orlandi, who co-own Tiger with Claire Steidel. Tiger is handled by Michael Stone.
GCH CH Flessner's International S'Cess
The Bloodhound, Nathan, finished last year as the Number Ten Hound with three BIS and 18 Group Ones. Nathan was bred by Bryan & Chris Flessner & Heather Buehner Helmer, owned by Heather, Susan Carter, & Shirley Van Camp, and handled by Heather & Zachary Helmer.
GCH CH Windbourne Hd Ranch King Of The Road
The Black & Tan Coonhound, Roy, had the Number 11 spot in last year’s Hound Group, collecting six BIS and 21 Hound Groups. Roy was bred by Meredith Langston & Francie Olson, is owned by Shelley Campbell, Shea & Tiffany Skinner, & C Rutten.
GCH CH Downhome Hitech Innovator
Finally, although we have not seen the Harrier, GCH CH Downhome Hitech Innovator, in the ring since the AENC, 2013’s Number Two Hound would be a contender should he show up. Chet had 15 BIS and 71 Hound Groups in 2013. He was bred by Susan Lowder, Miriam Nell, & Kenneth Nell, and handled Susie Olivera.