Yes, that's right, Strafe is already old enough to run in AKC trials. While I'm not a big fan of overworking a young dog, I felt that Strafe was educated enough to run in Novice AKC. he knows all the obstacles and understands handling basics. And he did great! He measured at 20 and 5/8" tall, and ran at 20" (a little over 50cm) jump height. I will be working slowly up to 26" (65cm) after this, but didn't want to start out that high so young. Over the course of the weekend, Strafe had the fastest time in the Time 2 Beat class but knocked the last bar. He qualified in Novice Standard 2 out of 3 days, and qualified in Novice JWW once - the other NQ's were almost all single-bar-knocked runs. On Saturday I managed to stop him to mark the knocked bar, and after that he didn't hit any more. He is VERY careful about bars at home, so I suspect the excitement was just too much for him. All the bars he hit were cases where he just ran too close to the jump before taking off, which is just a factor of him rushing to go places. The mild correction of stopping to mark the bar on Sat seemed to be all the reminder he needed to pay attention.
Drifter and Kiba each ran 2 of the 3 days of the trial, and each did OK but neither got a QQ. I messed Drifter up once by almost running myself into the table which pulled him off a jump. And Kiba won JWW one day but hit a single bar in Std the next due to severe sun glare coming in the windows by the roof... overall they just ran a bit "off" due to lack of being in tune with me and lack of strong conditioning routine the last few months.
Videos of Strafe:
Friday, all 3 runs:
Saturday and Sunday Novice Standard runs:
And Sunday's qualifying Novice JWW run where I didn't support a jump by accident: