Super Storm again recognized as a top US Complete performer earning 2023-2024 RU, US Complete Amateur Shooting Dog of the Year

Super Storm, our now 7 year old setter male, had another sterling year of wins in amateur shooting dog competitions. Delivering a series of exciting performances over a variety of venues, Super Storm (call name “Fed”) earned the honor of being the RU in terms of points earned in Amateur Shooting Dog stakes in which he competed. “Fed” has previously been the outright Winner of this Amateur Shooting Dog of the Year Award twice. Super Storm’s consistency in delivering hard driving, extremely classy hunting efforts marked by dug up finds where his straight up, 12 o’clock, intense pointing style is displayed have become his trademarks.

As “Fed” moves into the later stages of his competitive career, he can still be counted on to give all he’s got in the tank every time down. It’s positively thrilling to see him operate. It’s also thrilling to see his pups begin to make their mark as they exhibit the running and pointing style of which their ‘old man’ has become known.

We especially want to applaud Marty Festa and his excellent pointer female Blue Ribbon Harper who won this year’s US Complete Amateur Shooting Dog of the Year, besting Super Storm by a mere 8 points. For years Marty had Harper as a top tier threat in shooting dog competitions from open and amateur US Complete events to the championship Grouse trial circuit under her owner Marty’s whistle, as well as with the respected pro, Robert Ecker, guiding her. It was crushing to learn of Harper’s passing just weeks after clinching this award.

Thor Kain earns another US Complete Amateur Handler of the Year Award

Thor Kain working out of his home in Carbondale, PA has again earned the US Complete Amateur Handler of the-Year recognition, 2023-2024. This is a record fourth consecutive Handler-of-the-Year Award that he has earned.

Thor has a string of setters and a single pointer that he guided to consistent winning efforts over the field trial calendar year. Ch. Super Storm Cliff, 2X RU Ch. Super Storm Liz and 2024 US Complete Amateur Invitational Champion Super Storm are the shooting dog-aged setters he handled to wins. Additionally, the pup Super Storm Fred earned some firsts and his promising pointer derby Mohawk Mill Tilly scored for him.

Coming into the 2023-21024 field trial season Thor shifted his competitive strategy. While he may go to an occasional local weekend trial, he has chosen to focus primarily on regional and national US Complete championships. This makes earning wins for his dogs with him as a handler more difficult, more challenging.

As an amateur, Thor is faced with the challenge of training and conditioning his dogs while holding down a highly responsible managerial position with a health care company. Additionally, Thor has a young family that he is devoted to. He usually picks up his son from preschool every afternoon and then the two of them spend some time with the dogs. His son, Jackson, loves the dogs perhaps more than Thor.

Typically Thor works his dogs while other people sleep as he’s up at or before 5am every day. Often he roads his string beginning in the dark. From late July through May, Thor tends to his dogs multiple times a day keeping them healthy, sheltered and clean. Then when its time to attend trials, he often leaves in the middle of the night to get to the event in another state. Simply put, Thor puts a lot of hard work and makes significant sacrifices to put himself in position to win this award.

Super Storm Liz wins Runner-Up Ch, Region 1 Amateur Shooting Dog Championship

Super Storm Liz with Thor Kain handling put on a bird finding show at the Region 1 Amateur Shooting Dog Championship held over the Flaherty Field Trial grounds, Glastonbury, CT.

“Liz” registered 7 clean finds mixed in her patented fast, forward hunting effort. Few dogs can get over the ground as fast and gracefully as “Liz”. It’s captivating to watch her hunt. This is “Liz’s” second trip to the championship circle.

Super Storm wins US Complete National Amateur Invitational

Super Storm, the head of our kennel, met the challenge of the top US
Complete shooting dogs as they competed over the Flaherty Field Trial Grounds in Connecticut, April, 2024. The top 14 point-scoring bird dogs in US Complete competition over the past year were selected to hunt on Day 1 for an hour and then again on Day 2 for an hour. Many excellent performances were witnessed.

Super Storm, now 7 years old, went off strong on Day 1. Hunting with speed and great drive, he toured the edges of the course until about the 20 minute mark when he failed to return from a cast. Thor Kain, his handler, called for “Fed” and his scout was dispatched to look for “Fed”. About 15 minutes went by and then the call of “Point” echoed across the grounds. “Fed” was found standing on a virtual island of cover which was surrounded by standing water. Several major storms had soaked the grounds over the previous days. All was in order as quail were flushed in front of the statuesque setter. “Fed”, now back in hand, scored twice more on Day 1 with arresting style and intensity on each.

On Day 2, “Fed” put the icing on the cake with another strong ground effort. He has always been a dog who gets fired up to go hunting and that goes double for a field trial. Over the course of the sixty minute heat, “Fed” found and pointed quail five times further proving his bird finding ability. All finds were handled with the intense, tight, high-tailed posture that this multiple winner of the US Complete Shooting Dog of the Year has become famous for.

While there were seriously impressive performances from the other invitees, following the running on Day 2, Super Storm was declared the 2024 US Complete National Amateur Shooting Dog Champion.

Super Storm Fred, 2nd in Am. Puppy at USCDA Northeast Regional


Super Storm Fred, our 10 month old son of Super Storm, put forth a searching hunting effort over the spacious and historic Flaherty Field Trial Grounds, East Windsor, CT, November 11, 2023. He placed 2nd in a 10 dog field of amateur pups from throughout New England. “Fred’s” potential was obvious, not only in his hunting but also in the high class way he goes about his work. “Fred” carries himself high and his exceptional athleticism is apparent when you see him maneuver through cover and run along the edges of fields. He’s one of those dogs you can’t take your eyes off of. His finish showed that he has bottom and that he’s been worked into top condition. He handled with relative ease for Thor Kain.

Super Storm adds another shooting dog 1st to his record

The US Complete Northeast Regional Club ran its fall trial over the spacious Flaherty Field Trial Grounds at East Windsor, CT on Saturday, November 11, 2023. Fifteen shooting dogs went to the line to hunt for 30 minutes during the afternoon guided by their amateur handlers.

Two-time National US Complete Amateur Shooting Dog of the Year, Super Storm, now 6 years old, added to his impressive list of wins by capturing 1st place in the shooting dog competition. “Fed” gave a performance that featured his typical hard driving, determined hunting. While he was exciting to watch “Fed” did reach to the limits at times and with that he did give his handler some challenging moments where Thor Kain had to work hard to keep “Fed” on course. At other times, he was comfortable and perhaps the long trial season could be detected as wearing on “Fed. Nevertheless, he persisted and along the way his intelligent application and sharp instincts had him locating game five times. Each point was intense and complete with appropriate steady-to-wing and shot manners. “Fed” remained tight even after the shot. He finished strong, a tribute to his conditioning.

With this mid-November competition, the fall 2023 season comes to an end for “Fed” and his kennelmates. Fast upcoming deer season curtails running bird dogs. Additionally, since the string has been worked hard since mid-July, the dogs have earned a break until preparation for spring events begins in January.

Super Storm Fred breaks the ice for 1st at Sugarloaf Mountain Open Puppy

Super Storm Fred “broke the ice”, so to speak as he his first placement in a field trial. Running in the first brace, “Fred” ran hard for the full 20 minutes. He hunted with the jump, crack and class that Thor Kain, his handler, has witnessed in workouts throughout young Fred’s first months of life.

Fred, sired by Super Storm, has thrilled us in workouts and this day he gave the gallery a glimpse at this potential.

Super Storm, 3rd at Sugarloaf Mountain BDC, Amateur Shooting Dog

Super Storm

Super Storm added to his long list of shooting dog wins with a respectable performance earning 3rd at the Sugarloaf Mountain BDC, Amateur Shooting Dog stake held October 28, 2023.

“Fed” flashed around in Freeland Kennel Club grounds displaying the kind of running style he has become known for throughout his career. Cracking tail, lots of jump in his step and fierce determination to drive to the next objective are marks of “Fed’s” competitive DNA. This day, “Fed” had his running shoes on and for the first 10 minutes the handler and judges only had his bell that remained ahead to identify his hunting path. Focused on finding game, “Fed” went where he had to and fast in this search.

“Fed’s” pace was challenging to keep up with as he attacked the cover on the top field and had point called when his bell stopped on the tree line at the end of this switchgrass plot. High and tight, “Fed” had the bird located directly in front and he was immobile at the flush and shot. On down the stretch, “Fed” nailed a quail find on the edge of the long field that marks the end of the course. Again, style, intensity and manners of the highest order.

This was a highly competitive stake with many accomplished competitors who had multiple finds and strong hunting efforts. “Fed’s” hunting effort was rangy and this along with his sharp finds earned him a placement for him and his handler, Thor Kain.

Super Storm Liz, 1st in Sugarloaf Mountain Amateur Shooting Dog

Super Storm Liz

At the end of October the woods and fields were at their autumn peak as the Sugarloaf Mountain Bird Dog Club hosted their annual fall trial. The Freeland Kennel Club grounds near Weatherly, PA were groomed and all was in place this October 28, 2023 morning for the continuation of the tradition of competing bird dogs that goes back to the the 1960s on these grounds.

Hunting in the first brace, Super Storm Liz set a standard that the other 17 competitors could not surpass as she earned the first place ribbon. “Liz” hunted the course with her remarkably fast pace. She virtually flies from one objective to another. Even with this speed, she does not outrun her nose. Proof of this was that she rang up 3 sharply executed finds. Her first find was just 100 yards off the breakaway. When her bracemate failed to back, this did not unhinge Liz. She stayed high and tight throughout the lengthy flushing attempt. Birds were reluctant to fly at times due to the light rain that fell throughout most of the trial.

Liz registered two more finds spaced out along the hunting course. She was found pointing in a hedgerow and then near the end of the course. No other dogs rang up more finds than Liz. While there were quite a few other dogs with multiple mannerly finds, it was Liz’s hard driving, classy running, sharp bird work and strong finish that had her eclipse the field.

Super Storm, 1st Mountain View BDC Amateur Shooting Dog


Super Storm added another quality win to his record as he won the Amateur Shooting Dog stake at the Mountain View Bird Dog Club trial, September 16, 2023. “Fed”, two-time US Complete Shooting Dog of the Year, put forward the kind of flashy, tail-crackin’ hunting effort that is his trademark. At 13 he was found standing tall in a thicket where handler, Thor Kain, flushed the accurately located quarry with “Fed” staying high and tight even after the flush. On he went, forward, scouring the many objectives on the Mountain View course. Heavy cover did not deter “Fed” who rimmed field edges and explored islands of cover created when a farmer, decades ago, picked the field clear of rocks. At 24 minutes point was called for “Fed” as he stood just inside the edge at the end of a long field. Again, his style was magnificent and he had the bird located for Thor to put to wing. Down the stretch “Fed” continued to run hard and with plenty of jump in his step. He’s in great condition and even the warming temperatures were not a deterrent to a strong energetic finish. It’s been a thrill to have a dog like “Fed” who can put on show in a workout or in a field trial with friends watching.