Saturday, March 28, 2009

Royackers Kennels Agility Trial

Blaze, with his ribbons from the trial; two firsts, a second, and a third, and 4 qualifying scores.

Saturday March 28th, 2009, Blaze and I were at Royackers Kennels for an agility trial. This was our second time there. This is a beautiful facility, very competitor friendly, with a wonderful indoor building for hosting trials. Blaze did excellent, and I was very proud of him. We did 5 runs, 2 Master Standards, 2 Master Gambles, and a Steeplechase. Blaze got 4 Q's out of 5. He Q'd both standard runs, the steeplechase, and one of the gambles. He actually completed both gamble runs successfully, with great opening points in both runs, but on the second run he was 0.74 seconds over time. On our approach to the main gamble in this run, he had to go straight out past the weave poles to a jump that was positioned slightly past the entry to the poles and jump the jump going left, and there was another jump that was positioned off to the right of the starting jump (it was actually the last obtacle of the main gamble). I must have been just slightly off in my signalling, as he took the jump that was off to the right... I then was able to direct him to the correct jump, and then he went on to finish the main gamble (jump, frame, weaves, jump), but was 0.74 seconds over time, so no Q for us there. Had I not directed him to take that incorrect jump at the beginning, he would have had a Q for that run too. Once again, "Smack the Handler!". I was just thrilled that he actually did another main gamble with 12 weaves in it.... truly a massive accomplishment for us. He also worked great in all of our runs. He did all his weave entries, again one of our main challenges over the years. I have to say that our standard runs were a bit choppy, but this was all due to my handling... I clearly need more practice. I am also happy to say that Blaze is more than capable of doing everything I ask him to do, he just needs the right information from me so that he can actually do it out there. It is trials like this that leave me thinking, "When can we do it again?"... it was so much fun.