Blast Zone officially received the Seminatore Award presented to the top English Setter at the Grand National Grouse Field Trial banquet in Milan, New Hampshire in early November, 2019. The Seminatore Award is a part of the Setter Award program that was started when it had been 30 years since an English Setter had won the National Championship for horseback field trail dogs held at Grand Junction, TN. The English Setter Awards schedule recognizes horseback shooting dog and derbies as well as Cover Dog all-age dogs and derbies. The cash awards and recognition are meant to encourage breeders and trialers to accelerate the development of outstanding English Setters.
The Seminatore Award is named after famed New England professional trainer, Mike Seminatore. MIke was known as deeply involved in developing and competing the Chief line of English Setters that had great success in the woods and fields throughout New England cover dog territory. As a point of interest, Bob and Dick’s first dog in their partnership was Wire. Wire was sired by Mike Seminatore’s well-known male setter, School Boy Jim. Bob and Dick owned Blast Zone as a young dog. Ownership officially passed to Thor following his win of the New York Grouse Championship. Even so, Blast Zone–call name “Strike”–was with Thor Kain since “Strike”recovered from an automobile accident at about a year of age. “Strike” has always been “Thor’s dog”.
Thor Kain, owner, trainer, and handler of Blast Zone, was on hand to received the Seminatore Award. It’s an impressive accomplishment for an amateur to win this award as professional trainer/handlers travel the cover dog circuit from August to April, from Maine to PA to Michigan to Wisconsin. An amateur, holding down a 9 to 5 job, can hardly make the series of trial competitions the pros can but Thor and “Strike” prevailed in big entry championships in NY and PA and that clinched the Seminatore Award for them.