15 team members have been chosen to represent Ireland at the International Sheepdog Trials in Wales next month.

The team was selected at the Irish National Sheepdog trials which came to a conclusion last Saturday (August 7) at Killalee, Fossa, Killarney, Co. Kerry on a site provided by The Hotel Europe and Resort.

Three days of sheepdog trialling at the highest standard produced a 15-member (person and dog) Irish team, to compete at next month’s international trials at Aberystwyth in Wales from September 10 to 12.

John F Maginn, from Co. Down, a clear round in the Brace Class with his dogs ‘Kate and ‘Lad’. Image: Valerie O’Sullivan

Irish team

Two of the 15 team members hail from Killarney, Co. Kerry. The first being Mike Healy from Glenflesk, who has made the Irish team with his young dog Bill for the first time.

Mike finished in first place on the first day of trialling and finished in third place overall.

The second Kerry man to make the team was Kilcummin native and local committee chairman, Tom O’Sullivan and his six-year-old dog, North Hill Tess.

Tom finished in fourth place in the final days trialling and tenth place overall.

This is Tom’s fourth time making the Irish team and his second time with this particular dog, Tess having been on the team previously in 2019.

Irish Sheepdog Trials

Organisers of the Kerry event have said that the event was a “great success with a great local committee, many volunteers and great food from Kilcummin Gourmet Kitchens” over the three days.

The Irish team is:

  • Peter Morgan and Mosse;
  • Champion Dean McAuley and Joe;
  • Michael Healy and Bill;
  • Eugene Mclaughlin and Dot;
  • Caolan Byrne and Jack;
  • James McLaughlin and Prince;
  • Toddy Lambe and Bruce;
  • Allistair Lyttle and Twm;
  • Sammy Long and Lad;
  • Tom O’Sullivan and North Hill Tess;
  • Brendan Marley and Mot;
  • James P McGee and Nan;
  • Seamus Gallagher and Iona;
  • Philip McLaughlin and Jill;
  • Seamus O’Kane and Moss.

A reserve for the Irish team is Martin Feeney and Bob while the Young Handler was won by Peter Óg Morgan and Tip.

Dean McAuley and his dog ‘Jan’ at the 2021 Irish National Sheepdog Trials in Co. Kerry. Image: Valerie O’Sullivan

The Brace Championship was won by Dean McAuley with Jan and Joe and second place went to John Maginn with Kate and Lad.

Local independent TD, Michael Healy-Rae posted on social media in reference to the Irish Sheepdog Trials stating:

“Great turnout and a very well run national sheepdog trials held in Kerry over the last number of days. A very prestigious event to have been brought to the county.”

Image: Michael Healy-Rae Facebook

The Europe Hotel and Resort granted use of its 52ac field outside Killarney to host the event.

The sheep for the event came from the farms of Jim Dennehy, Gap of Dunloe Road, and Con Healy, Millstreet, Co. Cork.