Thank you to everyone who helped to make our Fall Hunting Tests a success. We are fortunate to be able to continue to have such a great turnout of GSPCI volunteers for the weekend. We apologize if anyone was inadvertently left out of the report.
After a relatively mild summer and a cool week, the weekend saw temperatures hovering in the low eighties. The hard work of Des Plaines SFWA staff paid off and the fields were groomed and in great shape. Saturday morning found the Chuck Horvath designed field ready to go, along with tubs filled to the brim with cool water, thanks to test chairman Sean Audy and committee members, Dave Wolfe and Frank Susi.
Saturday’s judging team of Joel Petersen of Kenosha, WI and Rick Torres from Burlington, WI were in the saddle and ready to go right on time. The guys did a great job giving the dogs and handlers a chance to qualify while battling the heat. Sunday’s judging team of local stalwarts, Joe Delaney of Minooka, IL and GSPCI’s own Paul Kosowski of Lockport, IL put the dogs to the test with similar results as the day before.
Taking the reins as Volunteer Wrangler, Nathan Selep did a great job recruiting and scheduling our volunteers. Nathan is the latest in the long line of Selep Family volunteers. Dad, Steve is a staple at the line, greeting handlers and sharing bits of advice on the course. Older looking younger brother, Andy couldn’t make it for this test, but his gunning skills have knocked many a quail from the sky. And of course, holding everyone together with her smile and enthusiasm is mom, Christine.
Another GSPCI hunting test family is the Odells. Mom, Mary, also known as the Queen of the Parking Lot, keeps everyone updated and to the line on time. Her friendly personality is as much a part of our tests as the GSPCI banner on the fence. Dad, Steve prides himself in his skills as an Avian Placement Specialist and granddaughter Chloe helps in the parking lot and behind the control desk as needed. Assisting as marshals were Andy Caron and Chuck Graack.
Filling out our expert team of Avian Placement Specialists for the weekend were Frank Susi, Dave Wolfe, Ivan Bivolarov, Dennis Sibley, Chris Lewis, Christian Messmacher and Matthew Neill. Our APS are the heart and soul of our tests, taking pride with each quail lovingly placed for the dogs to find them.
Hunting Test Director and Captain of Guns, Frank Susi had gunning duties well covered with his team of Avian Artillery Specialists. The weekend’s AAPs featured John Morrison, Nathan Selep, Hank Freitag and Dave June. Frank’s crew did a great job for the handlers, and their extra efforts in the heat were appreciated by everyone.
While the dogs pounded the cover in search of birds, Hunting Test Secretary, Perry Dlugie, ably assisted by Justin Erserski, did his best to look busy and keep out of the way of everyone who were doing all the work. Covering his duties at the control desk were Tony Mattingly, Mike Moskal, Scott Ludwig and Chloe. Keeping them company and helping to welcome the handlers on Saturday was long time GSPCI member and teller of tall tales, Paul Kosowski.
As is the GSPCI tradition, Saturday night’s cook out was well attended. Assisted by Scott Ludwig, Patti Nowak and Alice Graack, club Treasurer and Grill Master, Al Haseman and brother, Brad put out a heapin’ helpn’ of steak, grilled chicken, pork chops and fixin’s that more that satisfied even the hungriest of handlers. The evening was made even more special as we shared in the celebration of Patti Nowak’s birthday. Thank you to everyone who contributed with side dishes and desserts.
Sunday’s test concluded with a flurry of activity in cleaning and packing. Sean Audy, Frank Susi, Al Haseman, and Dave Wolfe led the charge, hauling equipment in from the field and making sure everything was put in its proper place in the trailer. With his judging duties completed, Paul Kosowski stayed late on Sunday afternoon to make sure that GSPCI club President, Perry Dlugie did a proper job in sweeping out the building to put an official end to the weekend.
We sincerely thank all the handlers, volunteers and friends who stopped by to enjoy the weekend. We also thank Purina Pro Plan and Cabela’s for handler’s gifts and continued support of our club. We take great pride in putting on the best tests that we can and thank all of you for helping to make that happen. We look forward to seeing you at the spring tests on April 7th and 8th, 2018 . In the meantime, be sure to check the website for webmaster, John Singh’s pictures from the tests and updates on upcoming events. (Hunting Test Pictures)
Your 2017 GSPCI Fall Hunting Test Committee Members
Sean Audy, Perry Dlugie, Frank Susi, Jacob Schatz, Hank Freitag, Al Haseman, Merri and Steve Odell, Steve Selep and Dave Wolfe