Friday, October 03, 2008

DOCNA Champs Day 1

As an aside, I fixed the embedded video player in the 'Warm-Ups' post below. I had somehow embedded a player that cycled through all of my videos rather than playing just the one. Of course I didn't notice it until a full day later.

Today was probably the most fun I've had at an agility trial in a very long while. Both dogs had clean runs in Standard and Jumpers. It turns out Lola is the only dog in her class (20" veteran) so I've been trying hard for nice runs with her so I can feel somewhat good about all those first place ribbons. I'm pretty sure this means she'll be in the finals no matter what unless there is some rule about a minimum number of dogs. In any case I want to feel like we earned our place there if we get to go. There are 5 dogs in Cody's class (16" veteran) so he has to earn his spot. 2 dogs get to go through and so far he's got 2nd place in both Standard and Jumpers. They'll combine his scores with tomorrow's runs so we need to keep it up with those clean runs.

Overall Cody had a fabulous day. His Jumpers run was beautiful, fast and focused and holy smokes even his turns were tight. We can thank Marco Mouwen and his seminar showing us the crazy mad opposite arm/pre-cue handling skilz. His Standard run was nice as well, just a bobble on a 180 degree turn off the dogwalk into a tunnel. He blew a dogwalk contact in Gamblers, otherwise he would have gotten 2nd place. Nobody in our class got the gamble.

Lola ran off for a sniffing fit at the start of her Jumpers run but I got her back and she finished up nicely. I stressed her out with a rear cross and I think that's what shut her down. Her standard run was nice, just a bobble at a 180 degree jump sequence but refusals aren't charged in DOCNA. Gamblers was a mess, I'll spare you the gory details.

The standard course had an interesting opening with the tire for the first obstacle then a right turn to a jump followed by a left turn to a jump. Lola has a tendency to run past the tire if I lead out and the rear cross thing wasn't a good plan for her so I had to front cross between the tire and #2 jump. Cody broke his start line so I didn't have time to front cross and was forced into a rear cross between the #2 and #3 jumps (sorry, I have no scanner here obviously so you'll have to follow the video). I was probably the only person to handle the opening in these 2 ways, most people did lead out pivots or lead out facing the #2 jump (which is what I would have liked to have done). John McCain my ass, I'm the original maverick. Yes, that's it, I'm an agility maverick, not the victim of training holes. We don't need no stinkin' lead out.

So far the trial has been incredibly well organized. I was done with my 3 runs at 12:30 pm. I scratched from Snakes & Ladders which is a course with only tunnels, contacts and weaves. I figured 3 runs was enough and it would be better to let the dogs rest up for tomorrow. I hung around until 2:30 to volunteer but still got back to the motel plenty early to relax. It felt great not to be exhausted and Jonny got to squeeze in some biking.

Weather has been remarkably cool, high of 71 degrees today with plenty of cloud cover and predicted highs of 67 for Sat. and Sun. Great temps. for dogs & humans.

Ugh, I can't get my video to upload using the hotel wifi. Maybe I can get it to work tomorrow.

1 comment:

  1. First day sounds pretty darned good. Who needs gamblers anyway! ;-) And I'm so glad you're having fun. One never knows about these unfamiliar trials and especially Nationals.