Thursday, July 7, 2011

A Bit Rusty

Split seems to have recovered nicely and can begin to take the workouts! That is the sigh of relief that you heard!

I have spent the last six months working with just Tip and now my timing with Split has gotten more than a little rusty.

This is the course that we worked on this week. I realized when I was walking the course that I had forgotten what Split is capable of and what he is not. Also, I just don’t know what he will still do well and what we won’t. It does feel like running someone else’s dog.

This map has two courses in it. The first, with the pink circles was the least challenging to figure out how to run Split. I started the course with a recall to front, backed up to send him over #3 and then post turned into the weaves. This worked really nicely. The challenge on this course came when trying to get Split turned nicely and through the box 5-6-7. I ended up doing a forward send, getting ahead of him and heading directly for #7.

The next sequence (Green Boxes) was a bit more challenging. I had minor bobbles from 6-7, I had to front cross the AFrame before the tunnel, Split didn't like to pull to the tunnel. 13-14-15-16 is where I spent a lot of time trying to solve the puzzle. What made this sequence a challenge was 15-16. I could handle it really messy and get it, but my goal was to figure out the best way to handle it smoothly. The best solution that I came up with was a landing side FC on 14, send to 15, get the heck out of there, catch Split’s head and release him to #16 when the risk of taking the #2 off course jump was gone. We need to work on some of our foundation skills, sharpen those up and then I will try this sequence again.

Monday, July 4, 2011

USDAA Rocky Mountain Regionals

My little girl, Tip and I accomplished some goals that we had been working on for a while. Our goals aren't really first place ribbons, or beating so and so, etc...Those come as a natural by product of attaining our other goals. The goal of being "present" in every moment of your run. Only focused on the run, the performance of every obstacle, and how your dog is interpreting your cues. I want to be as calm and clear as I can with my dogs when I run them.

Tip and I had an amazingly consistent weekend. I was proud of myself because I hit every start line this weekend with controlled nerves, focused on my dog, and being present for her during the whole run. Tip sat at every start line focused on me and determined to work as a team. I really tried to focus on the courses, reading them and running them the way that Tip would run the best.

The rewards came:
1st Place Performance Team!
1st Place Local Performance Grand Prix
1st Place Performance Team Jumpers
2nd place in Regional Performance Grand Prix to earn a 'Bye' to Semifinals at the USDAA Nationals
Earned a 'bye' to the Semifinals in Performance Speed Jumping

Both 'bye's are for USDAA World Games Championships in Oct. in Louisville, KY!