The CLA Game Fair is launching the CLA Gundog of the Year contest

The CLA Game Fair is launching a CLA Gundog of the Year competition. The new contest – held in association with Mitsubishi Motors in the UK – is aimed at the country’s leading gundog handlers and is open to all breeds of gundog.

The contest, which will take place daily over the three days of the CLA Game Fair, from Friday 19 July to Sunday 21 July in the grounds of Ragley Hall in Warwickshire, will see the top gundogs in the country competing in a series of tests.

The winning handler will receive the Sir John Ruggles-Brise Trophy, in memory of the former CLA President and founder of the CLA Game Fair, and a special prize from Mitsubishi – the use of an L200 Warrior for one year.

CLA Game Fair Director Andrew Crawford said: “It is only right that the UK’s largest countryside show should recognise the UK’s best gundog. We would also like to encourage more gundog owners to visit the show. This competition will provide a chance to be inspired by seeing the top working partnerships in action.”

CLA Gundogs Chairman Sandra Onens said: “To find the top gundog in the UK, the contest will be open to the country’s leading handlers, including those taking part in the Euro Challenge and Home International Competitions, as well as the judges and the gundog demonstrators, providing they are resident in the UK.

“This is an exciting development for the CLA Game Fair and for the gundog world because there is nothing else like it. We will be setting a challenging group of tests that will enable the very best of our working dogs to shine. The dog we are looking for will be capable of walking to heel, steady and quiet when shots are fired and will be at one with the handler. In short, we are looking for all the elements of a perfect gundog.”

A new arena is being built especially for the event. Entry is open to all gundogs that have won a Kennel Club Field Trial Award or have passed an Open Working Test or come with the endorsement of a gamekeeper who has worked with the dog on a shoot.

To enter, complete an entry form, available from, stating which day you wish to participate on and email it to by 1 July.

A draw will be carried out by the Gundog Chairman at 6pm on 5 July and posted on the CLA website. Competitors offered a run must pay the entry fee of £2 on the day, when they will be given an approximate time for their run. No entries will be taken on the day.

There will be a run-off on each day for the top dogs, the winner of which will be invited back on Sunday for a final run-off and the prize-giving. The dog achieving the highest standard in the opinion of the judges will be crowned the winner.