Statistics and Eligibility:
A dog may win the Top Twenty Invitational Award just once.
If past winners of the Top Twenty Invitational qualify as below, they will not be allowed to compete in the Top Twenty. However, they will be invited back as “Exhibition Only” and the entry fee will be waived.
Qualifying dogs are those ranked in the Top 20 (breed or all-breed) AKC rankings as of December 31 of the previous year but did not receive an invitation to the Top 20 Invitational competition for that year or ranked in the Top 20 breed or all-breed AKC rankings as of June 30 of the current year.
The Top 20 Invitational Qualifiers are determined by the AKC’s All-Breed and Breed Statistics. The reports are purchased from the AKC by the GRCA Top 20 Invitational Committee. When there is a tie(s) within the rankings, the committee will include the next eligible Dog(s). Prior Top Twenty Invitational winner(s) that are ranked will be excluded from the count.
Any dog that qualified and received an invitation to the Top Twenty Invitational the previous year and was unable to attend the last year’s competition may show as *exhibition only* at this year’s competition even if such dog did not qualify in the current year. Dogs that did qualify for the current year will be eligible to compete as long as they have not previously won the Top Twenty Invitational.
To compete in this event, all owners and co-owners of finalists must be in good standing with the AKC at the time the invitations are extended and at the time of the event. All dogs must be eligible at the time of the event to compete in AKC events.
In order to eliminate any possible perception of impropriety, the following prohibitions will apply:
- A person listed on the slate of Regular Conformation judges for the current year’s GRCA National Specialty Show, excluding Sweepstakes, may not exhibit or have a dog exhibited in the GRCA Top Twenty Invitational that is owned or co-owned by the judge. The dog, if qualified, may be shown *exhibition only*.
- No dog that is owned, co-owned, or shown by a member of the GRCA Top Twenty Invitational Judges sub-committee, or a member of their family as defined in AKC rules can compete at the Top Twenty Invitational event. The dog, if qualified, may be shown *exhibition only*.
The GRCA Top Twenty Invitational qualifiers will be sent a GRCA Top Twenty Invitational invitation to participate in this event. There is an entry fee to be returned with the entry form and other required information accompanying the Top Twenty Invitational invitation by the noted deadline on the entry form.
There will be three (3) judges for the GRCA Top Twenty Invitational event. There will be one judge from each of the following three categories:
BREEDER JUDGE – an established Golden Retriever breeder who has bred Golden Retrievers for at least ten (10) years. The Breeder Judge must not own or co-own either a dog in the GRCA Top 20 Invitational competition or its sire or its dam.
AKC MULTI-BREED JUDGE – a person approved by AKC to judge Golden Retrievers; not a breeder or owner of Golden Retrievers.
AKC GOLDEN RETRIEVER BREEDER – approved by AKC to judge Golden Retrievers. This AKC judge must not own or co-own either a dog in the Top Twenty Invitational competition or its sire or its dam.
Excluded from judging this event:
- Any person actively serving on the GRCA Top Twenty Invitational Committee including family members.
- Any person who has previously judged a GRCA Top Twenty Invitational event in any of the three categories in the past seven (7) years.
**These rules may not be changed without the approval of the Golden Retriever Club of America
Adopted 31 Aug 2018, Res 18-48
Revised 5 Dec 2022, Res 22-72