Saturday, 19 January 2013

Dog Vegas Show at Grantham

Our first Kennel Club (KC) show of the year was held at the UK Arena in Grantham and run by Dog Vegas.  The show was close to being cancelled due to the snow, but once out onto the main roads going was good.  I was running Shadow (small G6) and Storm (large G3) whilst +Susi Cooper was running Doople (small G3).  Due to the cold weather we decided to leave the rest of them at home so they could stay warm indoors.

Being an open KC show it was shaping up to be a large show, especially by winter standards.  In each of Storms classes there were over 130 dogs.  The start was delayed until 9:00 to allow competitors more time to safely get to the venue.  It was a very busy start to the day for me as I had four course to walk when we got there: two for Shadow and two for Storm.  And once everything kicked off it only got busier with us rushing around, changing dogs and trying not to miss any runs!  As it turned out there weren't very many people at the show, so all our best laid plans for which dog to run when went out the window and I had four runs in four rings in very quick succession.

Storm was first up.  We started with a clear round in the grade 1-3 jumping despite a hesitation towards the end. She was responding well and jumping the very tight jumps so pleased altogether.  Next for Storm, after having run Shadow a couple of times, was grade 3-5 agility.  In this Storm decided to jump off the see-saw ... not really sure why!  I crossed behind Storm into weaves and she completed it all so I'm dead chuffed.  Still more work to do on tight turns through gaps but she managed it second time around.  We'll just ignore the flying contacts!  The next grade 3-5 agility was, to put it bluntly, a disaster!  I learnt a lesson though: don't rush to get your dog and get to ring while they're calling your name and run Storm, it doesn't work!  Storm was still in a bit of a dazed rush so wasn't paying 100% attention.  We did cope with a tunnel under the dog walk entrance nicely.  Here are the nice videos of Storm running.

Shadow had a very up and down day.  We got a clear round in the first grade 6-7 jumping.  It was a bit messy but we got round.  In the grade 6-7 agility Shadow missed the A-frame, and by missed I mean ran straight past without ascending.  How you can miss a 3 foot wide blue and yellow board is beyond me!  The rest was OK and she listened well.  Which is more than can be said for the second grade 6-7 jumping.  In a similar vain to the previous Barking Mad show, we only made one jump before being eliminated!  After the first jump she took one look at me and decided she knew better so ran in a different direction!  We had the combined grade 6-7 agility round straight after, so my hopes weren't very high.  But once again Shadow surprised me, we went clear and finished 2nd.  Really pleased as we've only had a handful of shows at this grade.  Here are Shadow's best bits.

Doople had another fun show.  She runs much better in the winter in the cooler weather, this being one of coolest we've been to!  Doople's first run was grade 3-5 jumping and was her only clear round of the day.  No placings but she ran nicely.  The next grade 3-5 agility and, like Shadow with the A-frame, Doople ran straight past the see-saw.  The second grade 3-5 agility was was a good round apart from a back jump, Susi needed to turn Doople before the in.  In the last grade 1-3 jumping Doople took another leaf out of Shadow's book at the start: jump, jump, tunnel.  The tunnel wasn't supposed to be until later but Doople obviously knew better.  Here is Doople's jumping.

We also ended up running all three dogs in the team event to help out some friends who were short on dogs due to people not going to the show.  A team comprises of four dogs and handlers running in a timed relay event.  A batten is passed between team members once a dog has finished running the course and is always held by those not running their dog.  Once one dog finishes, the batten is passed to the first handler and the second dog may run.  The total time for the team is taken from the moment the first dog starts to when the last dog finishes.

Storm ran with Marie, Neil and another lady whose name escapes (sorry!).  Shadow ran with Wendy, Donna and Sharon whilst Doople ran with Wendy, Sharon and Val.  Storm ran very nicely but the team got eliminated.  Shadow ran well too but they ended with 5 faults which left them in 3rd place.  Doople also ran clear and so did the whole team, although they were 1 second slower than Shadow's team they finished 2nd to a team of collies who were also clear.  That means that they qualify for the final at another Dog Vegas show later in the year.  Here are the videos.

It was a good show with more clear rounds than last time, although that wasn't exactly hard!  The snow made it more interesting.  It ended up being a short day and we were off the show ground by 1:30.  And well done to Doople et al for qualifying for the team final.