Sunday, April 03, 2011

Salt City Cluster 2011

We're home from Syracuse and the annual Salt City Cluster - a MASSIVE dog show: Three obedience rings, one rally ring, two rings of agility and 12 rings of all-breed conformation. In short - HUGE show with literally thousands of dogs in one place - oh and a circus - YES, a circus! The crowds sitting and standing ringside can at time encompass both agility rings - lots of kids sitting on the ground outside the ring, lots of people hanging over the gating, taking pictures. It's not a particularly easy venue for the dogs to work...Teller LOVES the extra attention and really rises to the challenge!

We've made the trek to Syracuse almost every year since 2005 when Murphy and I went out to compete in one of the very first titling events in rally (the rally novice entry was 197 and ran from 8am until 10pm all four days). Murph finished his RN that weekend - on his 1st birthday.

In 2006 Murph and I went for Open A obedience, in 2007 (with a baby Teller in tow) we went for agility and obedience, in 2008 I double entered - Murphy in agility and Teller in 12-18 dog (which he won all four days). In 2009, Murphy was retired and Teller made his agility trial debut with 5 Q's in 6 runs. We stayed home in 2010 - but were happy to be back in 2011 - if we couldn't be at Nationals in Virginia we were going to be out in Syracuse with our friends.

For the Trial recap:
Thursday
Got to love FAST - As my friend Sharon says: "it's the only class when a dog can completely run amuck and still qualify". Teller was WILD, somewhat marginal listening skills - got his contacts, got the send-bonus and mostly followed my plan. It was good to get it out of his system. Q and 3rd place.
We had a SUPER standard run, liked our contacts, liked our weaves - Last two obstacles were chute to jump, Teller blasted out of the chute - I wasn't where I need to be and he missed the last jump. Of course Mr. JWW Q'ed in the afternoon JWW run.



Friday
Another FAST Q for Teller on Friday - Exactly my plan - Exactly what I wanted to work. First place.
Standard - Nice run obstacles 1-#17, wrong tunnel entry at #18 was a big old NQ for team Teller.
JWW - Clean, Fast and another JWW leg for Teller.




Saturday
We weren't entered in FAST Saturday and Sunday - I figured after three classes Thursday/Friday, Teller just didn't need to run FAST again on Saturday and Sunday - shorter days and less work for Woo.
Standard - Lovely run - weird pop-out at pole 8. Not usually something Teller does. Otherwise I'm pleased with the run. Teller held it together after the bobble and didn't launch into over-achiever mode.
JWW - Sticky Woo. When Teller is tired he gets really sticky and that happened Saturday afternoon - coming around the last pinwheel I dropped my shoulder and accelerated out. Teller came in close and didn't even see jump #16. I figure that IF we're going to NQ we might as well double NQ :-)



Sunday
Well it came together today - happily so. Not a huge Q rate in either class - Teller solidly at the top 25% of both classes today for QQ #6.



With double Q #6 Teller now has all of the double-Q's he needs to go to nationals in 2012. Unfortunately the 2012 AKC National Agility Championships will be held in Nevada....Too far to drive solo - and I'm not entirely keen on flying Teller across country just to experience Nationals. AKC Nationals will be in Oklahoma in 2013 before returning to Virgina (Lexington) in 2014. In 2014 Teller will be seven - of course anything is possible but like Nevada (and Oklahoma) 2014 is a LONG WAY AWAY.

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