What words spring to mind when I think about our day at the Lincoln Agility Enthusiasts Show? Well ….. fantastic show in all respects, super courses, Team GB Performance Weekend, awesome dogs, sunshine and perfect conditions AGAIN and ice-cream!
I loved how the judges had set their courses this weekend, embracing the new KC minimum distance between agility obstacles rule. This rule was introduced in January this year to address concerns raised by the agility community regarding the health and welfare of competing dogs. It’s hoped that by increasing the distance between obstacles could reduce hyperflexion and extension of the neck and shoulder joint and reduce the risk of injury to dogs while competing. The minimum distance between obstacles changing from 3.6m to 5m with the inclusion of a maximum distance of 10m.
For us this meant running some exciting courses, where the dogs had more space to increase their speed further across the ground between obstacles which for Flyte and I meant we produced some amazing “nearly” runs. Oops! wrong end of tunnel in the Adams Jumping Cup Qualifier and me being a little too eager to get into position resulting in a 5 faults refusal in our jumping class shows how on the ball you have to be with a more spread out course, particularly with a dog who is swift of foot. Our homework for this week is to work on the rising spread jump as two weeks running it has proved a problem for us. Flyte did have a great end to the day though with a faultless run in her Grade 4 Agility class finishing in 2nd place and within a hair’s breadth of the winner.
Jasmine had just the one run in the Dog Vegas ABC Jumping Qualifier finishing just outside the top five qualifying places in a very respectable 7th place, proving that at 9 years old she can still hold her own against the Belgian Shepherds and Kelpies (the collies of the ABC world!). If I remember rightly Jasmine and I get another chance to try our luck in this event next weekend.
Well, that was Flyte’s last show competing in Grade 4. Next weekend sees our first runs in Grade 5 at Dog Vegas ….. should be interesting!
Before I sign off I just wanted to mention the Team GB Performance Weekend which was also being held at the show. In our downtime between runs I was able to watch with interest the country’s top handlers and their amazing dogs being tested over European-style jumping and agility courses set by a top European judge. I have to say I watched in awe the small, medium and large dogs as they battled it out around some of the most testing courses I have seen. They now have to play the waiting game to see who gets picked to represent Team GB. It was such a privilege to witness the elite at work. Who knows, maybe we will get the chance to try out for team selection one day – watch this space!