14 March 2009

Paws in Motion USDAA Day 1 Recap

I deliberately entered only classes in the first half of the day today, and BOY am I glad i did! The schedule had Starters in 2 rings at once, and then Masters in 2 rings at once, and Steeplechase in the middle. It was sort of crazy. Lots of people, lots of dogs. Tough courses too. Steeplechase wasn't bad except there was a line with a broad jump (the new USDAA-spec one, very tall and vertical looking), and then you had to either rear cross the broad jump, or somehow beat them down the line and push to the tunnel. Tough! Rest of the course was nice, but since my dogs hadn't seen such an imposing looking broad jump I was a little afraid to rear cross it.

Anyway, here's how the day went. Oh. I forgot my camera. Sorry!
Seri in Starters Standard; She was whacko going in and I was worried about the spacing in a couple places, but she was pretty under control for Her Royal Insanity, and ran picture perfect for a Q and 1st (35 seconds!).
Next was Kiba in Steeplechase Round 1 (yes, it was FIRST). I felt like she wasn't quite "all there", and she spun at one point, anticipating a rear cross when it was only a pull. Then she missed the 2nd aframe contact. She also ticked the broad jump, but didn't knock it, and the judge actually was judging this properly (meaning you have to displace a board to get faulted). So she ended with 5 faults and a decent time for a Q.
I scratched Seri from Starters Jumps about then, because it was going to conflict with my two 26" Steeplechase runs, and her now-finished AD title made the run irrelevant.
Next was Drifter in Steeplechase. As usual he bit some dirt going into the ring. when I released him he barely brushed the first jump and it fell very late. Then he knocked another bar later and I realized he was HACKING on the dirt stuck in his throat. I paused and chided him for being ridiculous and he went HACK HACK. Idiot! So 10 faults, no Q.
Seri's steeplechase was a thing of. . well, not beauty, but she got around clean somehow! She almost fell on her face like 3 times, but each time managed to recover and leap up over the 26" bar without touching it. She was REALLY close to the wrong end of the tunnel before my screaming call got her to call off it, but that was the only thing she did 'wrong' (not faulted in steeplechase) so she was clean for a Q.
Drifter in Jumpers was next. Jumpers was an odd course, it was big and open till you got to number 14, when it turned into a pull-through-180-270 to the end course. hardly anybody went clean. Drifter was actually GORGEOUS except I was overly anxious on the pull-through and didnt' shut my mouth and he knocked that bar. I believe the dogs who Q'ed went the long way around that jump, instead of through the middle. Drifter's time was 24.68, the winning dog's time was 27.7, if that tells you anthing. In jumpers. with no weaves, that is a huge margin. So he got 4th anyway. He then ran clean in a relatively twisty standard course, with a pretty good (although not exceptional) dogwalk contact. Only a little slow on the table. Won that one.
Kiba's standard was good except she did the same aframe-run-straight even though I was pushing her off the end that she did last weekend. Strange, something I'll have to work on. So then i went into training mode (although later I was told I didn't actually get a refusal and was clean!). She was sort of jumpy on the table, and I deliberately twitched my knees slightly to test her and sure enough OFF she popped! So i corrected that. Then we finished and she spun the wrong way out of a tunnel towards the end too. Odd. Her Jumpers went really well though, and I was quieter on the jump of the pull-through, and she finished clean with 25.20, not quite catching Drifter's time but probably good enough for 1st, since most people were chickening out and going the super-long way around that jump to avoid the pull-through.

I was done right around 1pm. I WILL remember the camera tomorrow!

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