One to two times per year, I've been taking Vadasz (from our Sasha-Nova breeding in 2003) to dog shows in the USA, trying to earn his second and final major to finish his American Championship. Sometimes he was too pudgy and other times he was too thin and other times, it was political - he was often the best dog there but not with the 'right' handler. He was always breeder/co-owner-handled except for two times - when I had had knee surgery and couldn't show him myself and another time when I figured it was political and so hired a handler.
I have always believed in Vadasz and when I saw him recently (after he'd turned 7 years old), I said to his owner, Gary Krammer, "boy he looks great" and "wow, does he move nicely" and "you know, he really deserves to be an American Champion".
My plans kept changing this fall but to make a long story short, I finally decided to go to the Wine Circuit at Romulus NY. I asked Gary to enter Vadasz in conformation as well as Quest (Vadasz' 2-year old nephew from my 2008 breeding). This was going to be Vadasz's last shot at his AKC CH. It was now or never ( I was dreading ' never').
Thursday, September 30 at Wine Circuit didn't go as well as hoped. It was raining and the rings were turning to mud. Each dog of mine took second place in the classes but Quest and his sister Diva took Reserve Winners Dog. Things really improved for Vadasz on Friday. It was still terribly muddy but he took Reserve Winners Dog. And then on Saturday when I did so well with Miska in Rally, I said to myself, "I'm on a roll. Things are looking up." and I really had a feeling it would be a good day (or at least I sure hoped so!).
Things started to look up well when judge Linda More of Cary, NC moved Vadasz to the head of the line-up in the Open class and then gave him First. However, before this happened, she mentioned to me that he was limping in the last go around. "Oh no!" I thought. She asked me to check his paws. Well, they were covered in mud and straw because of the terribly wet and muddy conditions at the show grounds. I tried to pull some of the mud off this paw and hoped and prayed that there was nothing wrong with him. She made us go around again and finally pointed to Vadasz as her Open Dog. Then it was back into the Ring! Again, Ms More pointed to Vadasz as her Winners Dog. And it was a major!!!! That's all he needed to finish!!! 5,5 years after getting his first major at this exact same location, Vadasz finally finished his AKC Championship. I jumped up and down in the mud - I was SOOOO excited and happy. The judge laughingly said to me, "Don't make the conditions worse than they already are!!!!"
Congratulations to Vadasz (Am/Can CH Varazs Kiralyi Vadaszat FDJ, Can/Am CD, NAVHDA NA Prize II, JH, RN (AKC), RA (AKC), CGN. You are finally and officially an American Champion at the graceful age of seven!! No chalking, no hair dye or cheating to make you look younger. Just beautiful you. And to top the day off, Gary Krammer, his owner, earned a second Rally Excellent leg in the morning. Show photo to follow but here's a photo of Gary and Vadasz with their Rally ribbon.