1995 BULLMASTIFF CLUB OF VICTORIA INC. CHAMPIONSHIP SHOW RESULTS & CRITIQUES
Judge Dr Brian Corbett
Bullmastiffs have progressed as a breed in this country far more than many of the more popular and higher registered breeds. Many breeds that have been popular have gone into significant decline both in numbers and quality. The same could not be said for the Bullmastiff. The breed in 1995 is displaying significant strengths - in absolutely sound temperaments, excellent coats and proper colour, short backs generally, very good heads which have the required Bullmastiff balance, very good angulation and the substance and symmetry required in the breed standard. On these grounds, the breeders must be congratulated.
As is always the case there are some features which need improvement. I think the mouths are still some way from achieving the ideal. I have always found it difficult to reconcile the idea of a brachycephalic breed having a level bite. It is illogical anatomically. However, many of the muzzles are still exaggerated, especially in underjaw and there is a too prominent repandous in some specimens. However, I feel this in not as big a problem as the teeth themselves. I commented on the day that I thought that there were too many dogs with ‘hand grenade’ mouths - ie they look like someone threw in a hand grenade and shut the mouth! I also believe that movement could be improved. Although there were very few examples of cowhocks or Queen Anne fronts, many of the dogs move a little too close behind. Some were bow hocked and a few specimens displayed elbow dysplasia. I must also comment on size. There were a couple of specimens that were too small in size, but more significantly there were a couple of specimens that did not have the bulk or substance one would expect in a breed expected to have "a powerful build...showing great strength..." The standard also requires that the breed be "not cumbersome" expecting, I believe, a sound dog that has some elegance and bearing, being strongly built but with a bearing. This, I believe, matches the exceptional beauty in proper Bullmastiff expression, which I believe, was evident in most specimens shown on the day.
I don’t intend to comment on all dogs as such a critique would be too lengthy and not necessarily serve its purpose. I believe that the day will come when we will all expect a critique on every dog and that will be logical when judges have to make assessments about all dogs over 18 months for the award of CACIBs for the title of International Champion.
Baby Puppy Dog
1st: Mr & Mrs S Mazoudier's - Regallion Tux
2nd: Mr & Mrs D Armstrong's - Karabul Cockney Rebel
3rd: Mr & Mrs P Spice's - Bullvalour Jack The Ripa
This was a very good class with fairly even type. I know Bullmastiffs change a great deal so dogs in lesser placings or unplaced have potential. Winner (3) was exceptionally nice baby with an apparent excellent head in the making, excellent black mask and correct short back and balance. Better than 4 and 5 in head, angulation and overall balance.
Minor Puppy Dog
1st: Bulwaren Kennels - Bullberry Viking (Imp. Finland)
2nd: Mrs M Edwards - Nightquest Brave Apollo
There were two very good dogs in this class. The winner (10) was of excellent type with a great head, mask, muzzle and fantastic bone in proportion. The second dog (9) had the attributes of a very good young dog but didn’t have the quality of bone or head of the first. I would like to see the winner of this class move out better. At this stage he appeared to be a bit proppy in front. I’m sure with the angulation he has this apparent restriction will disappear with growth.
1st: Bulwaren Kennels' - Bulwaren Gigolo
2nd: Bulltyron Kennels' - Bulltyron Shadow Maker
3rd: W Gooding & R James' - Treebrook Raywood
First (16) and second (12) in this class were two excellent specimens with great futures I believe. I discovered later they have the same sire (my eventual Challenge Dog). They were upstanding with substance with excellent heads and sound movement and, importantly, that Bullmastiff type that comes from short backs with level toplines. The winner is, I believe, better headed, at this stage, than the second placed dog and moves a bit sounder. The third placed dog was also of good type, but was a bit long for my preference.
1st: Mr P Abela's - Powerbulmas Pezaz Obargo
2nd: Mr & Mrs P Johns' - Nightmaster Thunderbolt
3rd: Mr S George's - Bultusker Mighty Impact
This too was a good class. The winner (19) was of excellent type and great colour with the desired shortness in back and proper balance, excellent gait and great head, even if he was a trifle undershot. The second dog (20) was also of excellent type and colour, but didn’t have the quality in gait of the winner, but was superior in head, type, angulation, gait and substance to the third dog.
1st: Mrs P Quinn's - Aust. CH Abinitio John Steed
2nd: S Thornton & T Bowen's - Thiefmaster Jacks Mate
3rd: Mr & Mrs G Wilson's - Bullmaster Barnstormer
A very good class. The winner (25) and second (24) were both very pleasing in breed type with great heads, fronts and gaits. However, I think the winner was outstanding. He has the substance with elegance which I feel distinguishes the Bullmastiff. He is so sound and displays the degree of reach and drive expected in the breed. His head is excellent, if a little too wrinkled. The balance that comes from his size, substance and shortness in back is a model that would do justice for all breeders to emulate. Challenge Dog and RUBIS. The second dog was also very typey and a very good representative of the breed with an excellent front and outstanding gait on the side. The winner was better in overall balance and had a shorter back.
Australian Bred Dog
1st: P Abela & J Klok's - Aust. CH Bruin Gladiator
2nd: Mr & Mrs Thorwesten’s - Bulwaren Leathal Weapon
3rd: Mr T A Allen’s - Aust. CH Kenston Night Drifter
This was a pretty good class but strength in movement and shortness in back was not as apparent as in previous classes. The winner (26) had very good balance with the desired short back with a very good head and mask and tons of substance. I feel he is a little too upright in pastern and this spoils his gait and reduces the strength of his front. Still a very good Bullmastiff. He beat second (27) and third (30) with better balance, more strength, shorter back and better feet.
1st: Mrs S Evans’ - Bulconan Dare Devil
2nd: Mr M Maskery & Ms W Fenn’s - Wideacres Mr Riley
3rd: Mr & Mrs M Lewison’s - Aust. CH Bulconan Brave Pagan
I think this was the class in dogs I was least happy with. I think that there was plenty of evidence of very good breed type throughout the class but the elegance and upright stance I would expect in this breed was not as evident. However, I think the winner (36) was great. He was very typey with a short back, excellent head and angulation and good body type and with a very good side gait. Reserve Challenge Dog. The brindle dog (37) placed second was also very typey, but lacked the angulation and strength of gait of the winner.
Challenge Dog: Mrs P Quinn's Aust. CH Abinitio John Steed
Reserve Challenge: Mrs S Evans’ Bulconan Dare Devil
Baby Puppy Bitch
1st: Mr & Mrs N Lofthouse’s - Olbailee Scarlet Lady
2nd: Mr & Mrs P Spice’s - Regallion Desert Pea
3rd: Mr & Mrs S Mazoudier’s - Regallion Norma Gene
A smaller class than the Baby Dogs. Type was good but soundness generally was not as tight as it was in the BPD class. Winner (41) was very nice in type. I hope the smutty coloration on the forechest will disappear with growth.
Minor Puppy Bitch
1st: Mrs G Hobbs’ - Nightquest Lady Luck
One only in this class. A bitch of very good type with short back, good angulation and apparently good substance. Front and rear have yet to tighten and develop fully.
1st: Mr & Mrs B Marion’s - Treebrook Coral Gum
2nd: Mr & Mrs Collecutt’s’ - Bullccaro My Red Rose
3rd: Mr & Mrs Zuccaro’s - Bullccaro Lady In Red
This was a quality class with a very good winner (50). One of the hardest decisions I had all day was to separate this truly lovely Puppy Bitch from the Dog for Best Puppy. She is of excellent type, very short in back, with good bone, very good head and angulation, excellent movement and the desired strength and size for the breed. Second place (47) was also of very good type with excellent angulation, short back, very good gait and super head. The style and sounder temperament of the winner put her second. The third placed bitch (44) was less well developed than the first two, was slightly longer and didn’t excel in head type to the same extent as the first two.
1st: Mr & Mrs P Alexanders’ - Aust. CH Nightmaster Saturn
2nd: Bullmaster Kennels’ - Bullmaster Miss Revenge
Two only in this class. The winner (52) was an excellent bitch of proper Bullmastiff type, short backed, sound, plenty of substance, strong temperament and excellent gait. She pushed the bitch winners all the way but I felt she would be better with less wrinkle. Wonderful bitch. Would certainly have been graded excellent under CACIB system. Second bitch (53) did not have the quality of the winner in type, substance or soundness.
1st: Bullmaster Kennels’ - Bullmaster Sweet Melody
2nd: Mr & Mrs N Barker’s - Bulwaren Da Javou
3rd: Bullmaster Kennels’ - Bullmaster Sweet Success
Big class and the best quality I judged all day. It is a pity our judging system does not allow us to recognise greatness beyond the challenge. Under FCI rules, the equivalent of a challenge, the CACIB would have been awarded to at least 5 in this class. The winner in this class was outstanding in breed type - short back, substance, elegance, movement, head, mask, expression, coat etc etc. Her style, elegance, with substance, great type and carriage not only won her the Bitch Challenge but also BIS. The second bitch (65) was also of excellent type with great substance, carriage, short back and excellent head. Well deserved Reserve Challenge and was pushed very closely by the Junior class winner. Bitches 59, 64, 62 were also of excellent type and deserving of the highest awards. Invariable one cannot give all awards so judgements had to be made about balance, length of back, gait etc in making placings. These bitches will make outstanding contributions to the further development of the breed.
Australian Bred Bitch
1st: Mr & Mrs B Marion’s - Aust. CH Treebrook Silver Wattle
2nd: Bullmaster Kennels’ - Aust. CH Nightwatch Lady Nikita
3rd: Mr & Mrs P Spice’s - Bullvalour Mi Maxine
Another very good class with a winner (67) of very good type, short back, strong, excellent substance, head, feet with good gait. I think she is spoilt by too much skin and wrinkle especially in the dewlap. Second place (69) was also of excellent type with good angulation, substance and gait but not quite the quality in balance and head of the first bitch. Both of these bitches were well deserving of Challenge/CACIB status. The remainder of the class were of good type but lacked the substance and soundness of the first two.
1st: Bullmaster Kennels’ - Aust. CH Nightwatch Sweet Embrace
2nd: Mr & Mrs A Bateman’s - Aust. CH Bullvadere Helen O Troy
3rd: Mr M Maskery & Ms W Fenn’s - Bullthorn Im Brittany
Another very big class, but like Open Dog of mixed quality and type. The winner (76) was of very good breed type with an excellent head and strong gait and the desired substance of the breed. Was however a little long for me, certainly was the best in head type in the class. Second bitch (73) was also very good but didn’t have the head type or strength of topline of the first.
Challenge Bitch: Bullmaster Kennels’ Bullmaster Sweet Melody
Reserve Challenge Bitch: Mr & Mrs N Barker’s Bulwaren Da Javou
Best Exhibit In Show: Bullmaster Kennels’ Bullmaster Sweet Melody
Runner Up To Best Exhibit In Show: Mrs P Quinn’s Aust. CH Abinitio John Steed
Bitches in the breed overall were stronger in quality and type than the dogs. More bitches were of excellent type and quality than there were in dogs in this category. This, I feel, is very important and a clear indication of the depth of quality in the breed. Bitches are fundamental to breed improvement. You really need only one or two or three great dogs but you need lots of great bitches. Well done on this.
I thank the Bullmastiff Club of Victoria for the invitation to judge your Championship Show. Specialities like this are the best shows to judge. They are a great honour and, importantly, a great responsibility for judges. I hope my comments do your breed justice and I hope they will make some positive contribution to the further development for your beautiful breed.
In conclusion, I would like to congratulate the exhibitors for their excellent sportsmanship and the way they participated in the show on the day. It was very refreshing to be part of a show where it is obvious the dogs and the breed were of far more importance than individual human egos. I would like to thank the Committee of the Bullmastiff Club of Victoria for their invitation to judge and for their hospitality on the day. Special thanks go to Roy Spicer my excellent ring Steward, Denise Knight, equally excellent Assembly Steward and to Bonnie Spicer, ticket writer. Without their efficiency, the show would not have run so well.