Saturday, May 23, 2009

Key Pen trial- Saturday results

Well, I am getting spotty internet connection so the postings will be short. I hope to post each night and won’t have pixs until I get back. I didn’t take any pixs as I was running three Open dogs and then I set sheep for all of Nursery.

Getty hauled the new trailer to the trial field and set it up. We had to figure out why the electrical was not working and the prior owner had flipped all the breakers off. We tried to use the heater last night but it didn’t work and I am sure it is just figuring it all out. Getty spent the night and stuck around until after Nan’s run then bolted for home. He will come back on Sunday to pick the rig and us up and we go home. Then on Monday, I will car pool with Janet to the field. I will be setting sheep on Monday.

We had a few Open dogs pull so the total was 30 dogs. The course is a short course but very tricky. There is no give-me on this field. These sheep were held in a pocket so it was a blind outrun. They were not in the area that they are normally set. You had to send our dog out blind and if they got too close, the sheep would lift way off course. The fetch was straight to a Maltese cross and you had to put the sheep through one side and then the other side. You were in one quadrant and could not leave or move. Imagine a Maltese cross and you in one section and you could not leave that section. That made it hard, as you could not step out to block the sheep on your side. If your sheep broke the plane, then you had to go on. In other words, one attempt and once the exited the second Maltese cross they first drive panel was ahead of the sheep. There was a very hard pull to the right and in front of the sheep was the pasture they had spent the night before. The panels were set in a hole and it was tough as once the sheep went down the gully and you were not dean on, you were toast. Then a partial blind turn and the crossdrive was blind and in a gulley that swerved away off the line and you didn’t see your sheep until half through the crossdrive. The second panels were way up the field and the sheep pulled back to the setout pen. Then a right turn and you could not leave the cross until the sheep were in the shedding ring so the last leg was a dogleg fetch.

Then you had to take the last two for full points and the sheep did not want to shed at all today. It got very hot and the sheep were really pulling as well as slow. The terrain is very rolling and you would lose sight of your sheep for a portion of the fetch and drive. It was a tough course but do able and you had to be right on.

Therefore, Nan was my first dog to run in the third position. She cast out wide and well and came behind and the sheep and had a nice lift. A couple of bobbles on the fetch but nice indeed. Nice walk through the first cross and then a little fuss for the second part but we got it. The cross was judged in two sections for 10 points each. The drive she was pushy and didn’t take my away flank so we missed the first panel and then wobbly on the cross drive. She was in a zone and not teaming up well and brought the sheep into the ring. I had a couple of times that I called her in for a shed but she didn’t take them and we ran out of time. In the ring, she was running on autopilot and not felling her sheep. Score. Outrun 0, Lift 1, Fetch 3, Cross A 0, Cross B 3, Drive 14 and Shed 10. 79 total out of 110

Getty and I had breakfast after this and then he headed out. He had to come home and take care of the farm and hang out with his band buddies.

A few runs later, I went to the post with Lucy. She just moved up to Open and this was our second trial together. I was not too sure about her doing a blind outrun she is so biddable that I could walk her through it. I sent her to the away side and she cast out and then cast out again and found her sheep. She has a nice lift but the sheep jump and her fetch was dead on. The sheep wanted to veer off and I had to flank her come bye to hold the pressure. She kept wanting to flip behind the sheep so I would have to reflank her. She got the sheep through the gates and she did the Maltese cross – both sections flawlessly.

The drive was spot on, she covered the pressure side and put them through the panels and a nice tight turn, and then she and the sheep disappeared into the gulley. I blew walk ups and kept my fingers crossed that she would hold the line and not follow the sheep. I blew a come by whistle too early and the sheep popped over the rise so I quickly reflanked her and put them on line. Then she marched them dead on through the second panel and a tight turn and perfect into the shedding ring. I created a huge hole for her to come through but didn’t hold the sheep. I did another attempt and she didn’t come through so we timed out. Aside from the shed, I was very pleased how well she ran for me. Score, Outrun 0, Lift 2, Fetch 1, Cross A 0, Cross B 0, Drive 3 and Shed 10. 94 was the score out of 110 total. Last week she could find her sheep but this week she was a rock star.

We broke for lunch and the sun was blazing. My last dog was Tess and she will be 11 in July. Again, I sent her on an away like the others. She raced out and then saw the sheep and slowed down and did a cautious lift. Of the three, she had the best method on her outrun and lift. Her fetch was straight on, I flanked her, she held the line, and at the last second a couple of sheep slipped past one side of the fetch gates. There was nothing else that could have been done. She did the cross one way and I didn’t hold my end so one sheep slipped out one side and the rest went proper. One the drive, he held them nice and had tight turn and down the gulley. I whistled her to walk and she popped out of the gulley with the sheep on the course. The sheep leaned to one side and she had to flank to put them back and hit the other panel and had a tight turn and straight to the ring. In the ring, I made a hole, she came through, and the sheep turned so she held the butts instead of the nose and we were done. It was quite hot and her tongue was hanging out and she knew she did great. Score, Outrun 1, Lift 0, Fetch 5, Cross A 0, Cross B 2, Drive 4 and Shed 2. Total was 96 out of 110.

The highest score was 104 and that run was sweet and Maggi and Li held the standard on that run. The Judge was Rob Lewis said I had the winning run and then I did the bobbles which cost us. Rob also said I was the most improved handler. He saw me ten years ago when Tess and I ran in Novice.

Overall, Tess was 2nd, Lucy was 4th and Nan was midpack. I was very happy with how the dogs ran and tomorrow’s course is going to be a lot tougher!!

We had a handler potluck tonight and Norm made smoked chicken and roast beef. We ate well and now it is soon for bed for the girls and me. I set sheep for all of Nursery and that wore me out today. I’ll post how we did tomorrow when I get home.

1 comment:

Monique said...

Congrats! I am proud of all 4 of you!

With only 30 dogs entered will 4th get you any finals points?

Wish I could have been there. The good news is my essay is almost done. Now I just have a scholarship app to finish and a math quiz on Monday. Sheez :)