Since Cody & Lola both qualifed for 2008 nationals in Team at their last trial I figured that would be it for entering them in team for the rest of the year. I'm not even sure where nationals will be in 2008 or if I even want to go anyway. Three days of 5-6 runs a day is a lot to ask of my dogs, esp. since Cody is 9 and has to jump above his shoulder height and Lola's such a big girl. It's also a lot to ask of me since I have to take a vacation day on Friday and then go to work on Monday and be coherent after 3 long, tiring days with very little down time. I mainly entered the team event a couple of weeks ago to practice for nationals this year and because I liked the judge's courses from a previous trial.
I also hate the pressure of having to do well for teammates. Even if my teammates say they don't care and I advertise for 'fun' teams, I still feel bad when we E which is unfortunately the main mistake we make when we make mistakes. I end up feeling bad about runs that have just one little mistake that I would normally have felt great about but because it's an E for the team I feel terrible about it. In a way maybe this is good because I think I'm way too laid back about the whole competition thing. If I cared more maybe I'd focus a little better. I seem to do better under a bit of pressure whether I like it or not. Also, maybe it would be good for me to learn not to worry so much about disappointing other people. It's a normal part of life in general, I should learn how to buck up and deal with it.
But the next local USDAA trial has added a team event and worse has spread the regular masters & tournament events over the 3 days. So if I want to do Speed Jumping and masters standard on Friday I have to take a day off work, get up at 5 am, drive through Boulder & Denver in rush hour traffic all for only 2 classes. But if I enter Team then it's a whopping 5 classes on Friday and 5, maybe 6 if we make Speed Jumping finals on Sat. Then only 3 classes on Sunday no matter what. On top of all that one of my all time favorite judges, Scott Chamberlain, is judging. I just ran one of his courses from the Bay Team's Regional Grand Prix final on Monday night and was thinking how much I like his challenging courses and was hoping he'd come back here to judge sometime soon. And there are no trials between the first week of Jan. and the first week of April unless I want to do NADAC (um, not really) or drive 8 hours to Kansas in Feb. (um, not really). So maybe a little agility overdose in Jan. would hold me over until April. Poor dogs though, are they going to enjoy all that? Should I 'save' them for the non-team runs that I care more about? Regionals will likely be in the Denver area this year just 40-45 mintues from my house so I'd like to pick up those qualifiers so we can go. Also, it will be stressful trying to volunteer and run all those classes, if I'm not in team I can work those classes and relax for the ones I care about. I'm thinking of entering as a draw so that I could scratch some classes if I wanted to but maybe I can't do that if there's an even number of dogs and someone else needs a partner. Plus, I'll get agility fever and want to do all my runs once the trial comes around, who am I kidding? I may not have a super competitive nature but I'm as much of an addict as the next crazy dog person.