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Great Performances, Grouse & Woodcock Trials

Great Performances ~ Northern Dancer

While searching for a description of a great grouse dog performance, several people mentioned Northern Dancer’s win in the 1991 Lake States Grouse Championship. The dog was trained and handled by Jim Tande from Minnesota. The report from the Lake States gave little information as to the dog’s background so I looked for reports of his two other important wins: the 1989 Minnesota Grouse Dog Championship (inaugural running) and the 1990 Grand National Grouse and Woodcock Invitational which, at the time, was not yet a championship.

Dee Tande’s report from the Minnesota Grouse Dog Championship gives a fuller picture of the dog’s ground application and character around game.
2 x Champion Northern Dancer

Northern Dancer was bred by Dr. Alvin Nitchman of Hurtsboro, Alabama, sired by his great 5 x Champion Pork Roll out of Seaboard Queen, whose lineage goes back to Hall of Fame dogs, Riggins White Knight and Red Water Rex. Pork Roll (Ch. Smart x Proud Pat) was inducted in the Field Trial Hall of Fame in 1994.
5 x Champion, HOF Pork Roll

Northern Dancer or “War” was owned by Charles Evans whose Quail Call Plantation near Sylvester, GA served as the training ground during the dog’s derby season. He was hunted extensively on quail in the south and ruffed grouse in Minnesota and also spent time on the North Dakota prairies in training with Jim.

Later in life, Northern Dancer was named R-U at the 1995 Minnesota Grouse Dog Championship which was won by his daughter, Dance Smartly, owned and handled by Jerry Kolter.

Here are the reports of his major wins, including his “Great Performance” at the 1991 Lake States Grouse Championship:

1989 Minnesota Grouse Dog Championship 1989MNGrouseDogCH.pdf

1990 Grand National Grouse and Woodcock Invitational 1990GrouseWoodcockInvitational.pdf

1991 Lake States Grouse Championship 1991LakeStatesCH.pdf

Gladwin Field Trial grounds, Meredith, Michigan





Running Dog


Strideaway is an online publication founded in 2008. We are dedicated to promoting the great sport of American pointing dog field trials, in particular American Field sanctioned trials for pointers and setters. Our objective is to present the voices and ideas of experienced trainers, handlers, breeders and other knowledgeable participants and enthusiasts from the past to the present — amateurs and professionals alike. Whether All-Age or Shooting Dog, Horseback or Walking Trials, we place particular emphasis on wild bird field trials and the dogs that compete in them. We present richly illustrated articles and stories, podcast interviews and other types of media on a regular basis with the hope of providing an ever expanding, searchable archive of information relevant to pointing dog field trials.Read article

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