This weekend we competed close to home at the MHACB AKC trial.
It was weird because the judge had a family emergency and had to cancel so the club had to get a new judge at the last minute. The new judge used the previous judges courses. I thought the courses on Saturday were ok (although the qualifying rate was low and people were grumbling). But Sunday's courses were downright ugly! There was a LOT of grumbling on Sunday and even the judge hinted during his briefings he tried to tweak as much as possible to make them a bit more friendly.
I hate it when a course begins with a very tight pinwheel. How demotivating is that for the dog? Both the standard and jumpers courses began with tight 4-jump pinwheels. The dog is released from the startline just go in a little circle to nowwhere!
On Saturday Sage qualified in jumpers with a 4th place. I fell on the course and Sage almost came to a complete stop so we lost a lot of time there. There was a fairly straight tunnel to the tire with a 90 degree turn off the tire. I was concerned about the safety of the tight turn off the tire and so my shoulders were rotated towards Sage with my opposite arm out to cue a turn as soon as she came blasting out of the tunnel towards the tire. She collected nicely for the turn as she headed to the tire and my feet slipped out from under me (loose dirt) as I finished rotating for the front cross and down I went. Sage came through the tire, and headed towards me. I quickly jumped up and took off to finish the last 4 jumps (another pinwheel).
That afternoon she qualified in standard with a second place and earned the last double Q to finish qualifying for AKC Nationals 2009!
Sunday morning, the standard course was just plain ugly. Many dogs got the wrong end of a tunnel (weaves, 90 degree turn over a single jump and into the far end of the tunnel), almost all handlers ran past the jump and tried to pull their dogs past the wrong tunnel entrance. Many dogs took the wrong end anyway. There was another tunnel trap coming off the a-frame as well.
I ran the course with Summit first and he missed his wp entry, then got the wrong end of the tunnel. Once we got past that, the rest of his run was fairly nice although a bit OTT.
I left Sage in the weaves and moved laterally so I could front cross the landing side of the jump before the tunnel. Sage got the correct end of the tunnel. It was a beautiful run and she qualified with 1st place. There were only 4 Q's in the entire 20" class! Sage was the only fast dog to qualify.
That afternoon in jumpers, (opening was tunnel into a 4-jump pinwheel - another stupid circle!), Sage and I got through the more technical parts of the course and then I sent her out to a jump and turned and left too soon for the finish and she pulled off. Darn! we were 4 jumps from the end. So no QQ on Sunday.
... well Mr. Summit had a lot of fun this weekend. He missed every single weave pole entrance. He had a beautiful standard run on Saturday but missed his wp entry. I have not been training weave poles with him in quite awhile since his weaves have always been solid with very few missed entries. Guess we'll be working on those this week.
However, he had SOLID startline stays and CONTACTS! I delayed the release from all his contacts this weekend to reinforce the verbal release from 20/20.
We are heading out to Kansas on Thursday for the CASA de CANINE USDAA trial.
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