The AFTCA is excited to announce the creation of the largest and most inclusive Amateur Handler Award in the organization’s history and in the sport of Field Trialing!
Over 100 years ago the Amateur Field Trial Clubs of America (AFTCA) was created to offer amateur handlers the opportunity to participate in Bird Dog Field Trials. At the creation of the AFTCA, Clubs made up the membership because they provided the most efficient grass roots way of supporting amateur field trial venues. The organization has now grown to include individual members as well.
The AFTCA began with 30-minute amateur club stakes designed to allow amateurs the opportunity to compete with their bird dogs on weekends. The 30-minute duration was intentional because it allowed amateur handlers the opportunity to show their dogs competitively while tending primarily to their families and occupations. The weekends were used for the same reason. Over time, as amateurs became more committed and competitive more and more hour stakes, including championship stakes were developed. Some of these more complex competitions, over time, contributed to the trend of fewer and fewer 30-minute amateur stakes. With that in mind the AFTCA is beginning to undertake an effort to refocus our attention on what serves individual amateurs and clubs the best. Our goal is to provide information, support, opportunity for both clubs and individual members in a fun, competitive and prestigious Top Amateur Handler format. We hope to accomplish this by:
• Provide an opportunity to award handler points to any AFTCA Individual Member or Pre-Member for any placement in a 30 minute Amateur All-Age or Shooting Dog stake held by an AFTCA Member Club.
• Allow an individual who was not a member in the previous field trial season to have an active Pre-Membership number that allows the handler to participate for 1 year at no membership cost.
• Provide monthly informative emails giving valuable and useful information regarding field trials and handling development.
• Provide Individual Member recognition on social media, targeted emails and website publications.
• Provide a tax deduction issued by the 501(c)3 AFTCA 20th Century Fund Organization to landowners offering a venue for the club to hold their trials on.
• Allow a club who was not a member in the previous field trial season to have an active Pre-Membership number that allows the club to participate for 1 year at no membership cost.
• Help Amateur Clubs promote 30-minute amateur stakes by offering a prestigious Top Amateur Handler Competition.
• Provide Club Member recognition on social media, targeted emails and website publications.