Oza clever boy then!

Oza clever boy then!

Constable Craig Moore and his four-year-old patrol dog partner Oza were today crowned Police’s top dog team.

Craig and Oza, of Christchurch, came top of the 11 teams competing in the patrol dog category of the National Police Dog and Detector Dog Championships, winning the coveted Frank Riley Cup.

Just seven marks separated Craig and Oza from second-placed Owen Davies and Quid (Auckland). Andrew Knox and Ra (Hawke’s Bay) came third.

“I’m absolutely ecstatic,” says Craig, who donned a Crusaders shirt to celebrate Canterbury's first win in the National Championships since 2000. “It’s still sinking in. This is something I’ve wanted to achieve since I joined the dog section.”

Craig has worked with Oza - his first operational dog - for three years. This is their second time at the Nationals, where they came fourth in 2015.

He attributed his success to hard training and support from family, senior colleagues and the Dog Training Centre.

“I’ve had a very good grounding and a little bit of luck,” he says.

Inspector Todd Southall, National Coordinator Police Dogs, says the closeness of the finish and the fact that the top three patrol teams scored more than 1000 marks out of a possible 1350 reflected the quality of the competitors.

“It was very close – down to the wire,” he says. “Anything over 1000 marks is outstanding.

“Such high standards are the reason New Zealand dogs are held in such high regard here and abroad.”

There was also success for Police in the Explosives and Narcotics Detector Dog categories, in which teams from Aviation Security, New Zealand Customs, Corrections and Defence also compete.

Senior Constables Ross Clarke and Kea (Auckland) and Hamish Todd and Ezak (Wellington) came first and second in the Explosives category.

Senior Constable Matt Fage and Tas (Wellington) came second in the Narcotics category, behind Auckland Corrections Officer Karina Thomas and Jesse.

Presenting the prizes at the Dog Training Centre, Trentham, today, Deputy Commissioner Viv Rickard praised at the competitors.

“Just being selected to be here to compete is a win in itself,” he said. “Secondly, this is an opportunity to master your trade, get better every day and benchmark yourself against other people who are at the top of their game.”


RESULTS

Patrol dogs

1st Constable Craig Moore and Oza (Christchurch)

2nd Senior Constable Owen Davies and Quid (Wellington)

3rd Senior Constable Andrew Knox and Ra (Hawke’s Bay)

4th Senior Constable Paul Fleck and Falon (Wellington)

5th Constable Robert Campbell and Quita (Wellington)

6th Senior Constable Nathan Kluit and Raja (Auckland)

7th Senior Constable Hamish McPhillips and Capo (Auckland)

8th Senior Constable Blair Spalding and Rush (Hamilton)

9th Senior Constable Reuben Whalley and Gill (Christchurch)

10th Senior Constable David Robison and Falcon (Whakatane)

11th Constable Bradley Smith and Kona (New Plymouth)

Narcotics Detector Dog

1st Corrections Officer KT Thomas and Jesse (Auckland)

2nd Senior Constable Matt Fage and Tasman (Wellington)

3rd Senior Customs Officer Andrew Bond and Rajax (Auckland)

4th Senior Constable Gary Donnelly and Mylo (Christchurch)

5th Senior Customs Officer Monica Hoeg and Ember (Wellington)

6th Corrections Officer Ricky Trevithick and Preston (Wellington)

Explosives Detector Dog

1st Senior Constable Ross Clarke and Kea (Auckland)

2nd Senior Constable Hamish Tood and Ezak (Wellington)

3rd CCPL Aidan Cornwall and Yardley (NZ Army)

4th Aviation Security Officer David Chait and Bella (Auckland)

5th LCPL Leslie Tawhara and Xia (NZ Army)