Chaos Crew

Chaos Crew

Thursday, June 30, 2011

USDAA in the forest!

This was a really weird trial for us, with as many good moments as bad. It's set at a nice park among tall pines with no view of any street. It's also only 25 minutes from home.

I was running Skye and Rip, and also ended up running Baby for Katrina as she had a leg muscle that didn't feel right and didn't want to chance it after last year's hamstring pull. That amounted to about 15 runs for the weekend.

Lets review Rip's runs first. He had a decent weekend, even though we still manage to find a way to NQ every Advanced Standard run we do. We have 1 Q in the last 11 attempts at Advanced Standard!
We started the weekend off on a good note, with a Q in Master Gamblers. He did a nice job on the send over two jumps to a tunnel, then back over two jumps to finish. That's his 4th Master Gamblers Q - I dont think gamblers will be our issue like it was for Skye!

His Saturday Standard run was really slow - like I didn't know what was wrong with him slow - and later I found out that he really needed to potty, so bad dad on me. He ended up running around the chute, so I put him back in, and then I didn't cross and caused a wrong end of the tunnel.
He ran nicely in Steeplechase round 1, but he did knock 2 bars, so that kept us out of round 2.

He ran pairs with Amy & Nes, and we squeaked in with a Q. Nes is consistent but slow, so we barely made time. This was also our 4th Master Pairs Q.

To save some money, we did not run Grand Prix, as we already have our 2 Qs for nationals.
On Sunday, we started with Standard and had a good run going - then he popped out of the weaves at pole 10. Damn! That was our fault for this try.
Next up we ran his first ever Master Jumpers course. Rip did a very nice job and kept all the bars up for a Q. Good boy!

We then had Snooker, which was an interesting setup. The 7pt combo was three tunnels set far apart, and you had to run by jumps to get there.
Because Rip loves tunnels, I thought this would be a good course for us to try for all 7s. I figured I could tell him to 'go tunnel' and he wouldn't care about the offcourse jump options. I was right - he did a great job and never looked at the jumps, but with the 90 degree+ heat, he wasn't running all that fast, and we got through 6 in the closing, and then the #7 in the closing wasn't the tunnels, but a 3 jump combo instead.

Rip got up to the 2nd jump of #7 in the close when the buzzer went. Only 1 dog completed all 7s and got through the close, so this *woulda* been a super Q for us. Instead it was a regular Q.

Rip finished the day by trying the IHC jumpers course. Again he was running pretty slow, and he did a good job with only 1 refusal on the course. No offcourses.

Now Skye's turn...
On Saturday, for whatever reason, Skye popped out of the weaves at pole 10 five different times. I cant even remember the last time he popped out prior to this trial. He did this 3 times in a row in Gamblers to start off the weekend. He also popped in Perf. Steeplechase and Pairs. I was
pretty frustrated with him and those thoughts of 'retirement' crept back in. I figured I would just have to wait and see what the rest of the weekend brought and decide what to do later. Fortunately, he did not pop out in any run on Sunday.

So, Skye managed to only get 3 Qs this weekend, two in Standard - both 1st place in pretty small classes, and he also Q'd the IHC Jumpers course.

The days were pretty hot, which tends to affect Skye's performance - he is definitely a lot slower in the heat.
In Gamblers, we had an alltime low number of points - since he kept missing those weaves. We got 2 whole points, and no distance challenge - but my heart was not in that part anyway after the bad weaves.
In P-Steeplechase round 1, he knocked the broad jump and the weave popout that we did fix. No Q, but we made it to round 2 anyway.

In pairs, I had to re-do the weaves again, and then I forgot the course so directed him over an offcourse jump.
The Snooker run wasn't bad, though he didn't listen and took an offcourse jump after #5 in the closing, so we had 36 points and no Q!
His Jumpers run was nice except that he uncharacteristicly knocked 2 bars.
His round 2 of P-Steeplechase was pretty nice, right up to the point where he skipped the broad jump. I didn't go back and fix it.

Skye ran pretty slow in his IHC Jumpers course, which I am sure contributed to us being able to Q it. The course had a threadle and push around challenge as well as some interesting angles.

On a good note, according to the USDAA website, those 2 Standard Qs for Skye this weekend give him 100 Qs for Lifetime Achievement standings.
That also leaves us with needing 5 pairs and 5 gambles for our PADCH-Bronze.

And finally, I ran Baby this weekend...
Baby ran really well for me with just 2 exceptions.
I ran her in Perf Grand Prix and got 1st place and another bye certificate for Katrina. We ran P-Steeplechase and she had a good run for 2nd place in round 1, and then she followed that up by getting 1st in round 2 on Sunday!
She was sassy in Gamblers, so she did not get the gamble as she was barking at me instead. Her only other issue was in Saturday's Standard course when she was looking around for mom, and skipped the 2nd jump, then as the course turned back to where Katrina was filming, Baby went over for a quick visit - she also didnt want to lay down on the table, the little stinker!
Katrina did run her in Pairs for the 10 obstacles, while I ran Skye (see above).
She Q'd Jumpers, Snooker, Standard and IHC Jumpers. Sunday's Standard run was great, good for 1st, especially considering her foolishness on Saturday. All in all, a good time running Baby-dog!

Grand Prix

Steeplechase Rd2

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Double Q's and the Meeks!

This past weekend we competed at the 3 day FRAAD AKC trial. This is a fun trial because it's one of our few shows that includes the FAST class. It was 3 rings, with 2 indoors and 1 outdoor, which can make for some conflicts, but it wasn't really an issue for us.

We had a really successful show, except for that darn FAST class! I also got to run Meeker - which I will talk about later.

Rip put together three really nice runs. He is in Exc. A for STD and Exc. B for JWW. His standard run was great - he ran fast, motivated and listened really well. Unfortunately we knocked the panel jump so no Q, but still a great run with a time that would have been 3rd place in the Exc B class of 50+ dogs.
He also ran a really fast JWW run - it was his kind of course with a lot of areas to use his stride. I called too early for a wrap jump and made him knock the jump before it though, so no Q's, but very happy with the runs. Rip ran both STD and JWW more than 3 seconds faster than Skye did. I am starting to see some of his speed actually come out on course.
We ran Open FAST at the end of the day and he got the Q to earn our Open FAST title! That puts us in Excellent for all classes, yeah!

Skye continued his good consistent running on Friday and earned us another Double Q - this is the 5th one needed to qualify for Nationals.



Rip put it together and got Q's in both Exc A STD and in Exc JWW! His first 'virtual' double Q! We still need 1 more Exc A qualifier to get into B for Standard. He was just a touch behind Skye in JWW, and about 1.5 seconds ahead of Skye in STD.

Skye ran Saturday's courses great too and earned yet another Double Q - the last one we needed for Nationals. We still need a little over 100 points more, but that should not be an issue.
In the JWW course on Saturday, I believe I put 7 front crosses in for Skye to keep him running motivated and it worked, putting him just ahead of Rip.
The Standard course had a tunnel under the AFrame that caused a lot of dogs to turn the wrong way upon exiting (including Rip) so I ran and FrontCrossed for Skye which turned him correctly. This course also had a weird intentional back-jump combination, where obstacle 15 & 16 were the same jump - take it one way for 15, turn around and take it the other way for 16. We did it without issue.

Skye JWW


Skye STD

Finally, Skye was going for the perfect double Q weekend after getting the Q in JWW. So close! After the dogwalk, we were to wrap a jump and go back to a tunnel under the dogwalk - but Skye had spotted a different jump and headed in a direction to cut me off before the jump - I pushed back to the correct jump and told him to wrap but his approach was off and he knocked the bar. The rest of the run was great.

Rip ran two really nice runs again, with 1 mistake in each. In JWW, I got momentarily lost and he saved my butt when I realized I was about to pull him off the correct jump, but then I rushed a front cross and cut into his path, causing him to knock the 2nd to last bar.
In Standard, I got out of position after bailing on a cross before the AFrame. This put me behind, causing me to rear a jump after the frame, and then rear into the weaves. He hit the weave entry but skipped a pole, so NQ.

The Excellent FAST courses this weekend all had the same theme - some kind of approach to a tunnel where you had to get the dog into the difficult end. Skye and I failed the challenge all 3 times - ugh!!
Rip had his first 2 tries at Excellent FAST but did not get the Q's. Sunday's was as close as you can get without actually Qing it - he got the distance piece, but turned around on the AFrame after a bad approach. I stood for a moment trying to remember if I could put him back on it, then the buzzer went and it took us 5 seconds to get over the finish jump, which put our points total at 59 - just 1 shy of qualifying!

"The Meeks"
On Saturday and Sunday I ran Meeker for one of our students, Liz, who was injured. Meeker is a big fun Aussie who jumps 24". I have run him in class before, and he stayed with us one time when Liz was on vacation, so we do have a little bond.
Meeker ran great for me, and we actually went 3/4, earning her a Double Q on Sunday. Our only NQ run was caused by Meeks hitting the triple (and knocking it flat!). He is such a good dog and runs well for others. He does already have his MACH 2, so he is definitely well trained.

Meeker STD