For the first time, the West Highland White Terrier Club of England held a Westie of the Year Competition to finish off in style the year's centenary celebrations.
On January 28th 2007, three judges were invited to judge dogs, bitches and puppies who had qualified during the year, winning CCs, Best Puppy awards and Club open show BIS and BPIS. Each judge was kept secret until just before the competition began.
Mrs Ela Berry - Incheril
The Berry family have been involved in West Highlands since the 1950s. Mrs Berry is perhaps the only person to judge the breed at Crufts twice and was persuaded to come out of retirement for this competition. There have been 7 Incheril Champions from the first, Amaryllis in 1966 to 2006 CC winner, Aflame.
Mr Geoff Corish - Sealaw
Mr Corish is perhaps the best known professional handler on the UK show scene but his roots are in Westies, making up his homebred Ch Sealaw Selena in 1972. Since then he has handled over twenty Westies to their titles, including Crufts BIS winner, Ch Dianthus Buttons and he judged the breed at Crufts in 2000. Mr Corish is now an allround judge but considers WHWT his first love.
Mrs Ferelith Somerfield - Oudenarde
Mrs Somerfield's roots lie in terriers,
particularly Cairns and she is one of the UK's most qualified judges. She is also chairman of Dog World.
Her links to Westies run deep as her mother, Diana Hamilton gave Ch Dianthus Buttons the Terrier group before his Crufts win in 1976, while Mrs Somerfield awarded Ch Olac Moon Pilot Supreme BIS in 1990. She is due to judge the breed at Crufts in 2008.
Delta was the Top WHWT Puppy 2006, as well as joint Top Terrier Puppy and Joint Top Puppy all breeds. He gained two CCs as a puppy, which hasn't happened for about 30 years.
He is by Ch Lindenka Brannigan ex Lindenka Kerrygan who took her 2nd CC at Manchester the week before. Brannigan is the son of Ch Krisma Streetwise, while Kerrygan is a Streetwise granddaughter and also a granddaughter of Multi Ch Ariostea Pilgrim to Ashgate.
Runner up to Delta was Mich Dale's Lynnsto Arrian. She took Best Puppy at the Scottish Kennel Club in May and is an Open show BIS winner. She is by a French dog, Multi Ch Lord Wain's Major Thompson ex Roscafin Arrena of Lynnsto.
Ch Ashgate Amaryllis
Amaryllis took her title in 2006 with a third CC at South Wales, then a 4th at Leeds. She became the first Champion for Kathy Davis, partner in the Ashgate affix. Amy is the latest Champion by Multi Ch Ariostea Pilgrim to Ashgate ex Ardelve Ellie Daise by Ashgate. She won the final round of the bitch competition
Runner up to Amaryllis was the Edmondson's Pepabby Priceless, handled by Julie Farmer. Priceless was Best In Show at the of England Championship show in April. She is by Ch Krisma Jammydodger ex Ch Pepabby Precious.
Ch Krisma Streetwise
Streetwise took his 5th CC & BOB at Windsor from the Veteran class (he is nine years old) to qualify for the competition. Owned and bred by Dot Britten, Washy saw off all rivals to become the first Westie of the Year. He is already sire of six UK Champions and many overseas. His grandsons took Top Puppy and Dog Runner up awards. He is by Ch Wesscots One Knight Stand ex Krisma Keynote at Olac, a daughter of Ch Olac Moon Pilot and the first Krisma Champion, Lasara Hell Of A Girl.
Runner up to Washy was his grandson, Bellevue Caught In The Act at Jillso, owned by Alison Mellor and bred by Tina Squire. Spike has two CCs and was BIS at the Southern Club show. He is by Bellevue Just F'fun (a Streetwise grandson) ex Bellevue Fire Dancer (a Streetwise daughter)