The very last weekend of September we had a three day trial in Columbus. Everyone in Ohio just raves about this place but I was not impressed with the surface at all. It was AstroTurf and slick as far as I was concerned. We ran FAST first and she didn't slip so I figured she was okay. She got the send bonus and we got every obstacle out there except for a single bar jump. She placed 1st with 79 points and finished her XF (Excellent FAST) title. Standard was up next and she ran great but slipped a bit in the weaves and then right before a jump, taking a bar. JWW she Q'd but slipped in the weaves in that ring as well.
Saturday went a little better we ran clean in Standard with one little slip on the surface. In JWW with a double Q on the line I called her as she was over a jump and she turned in air, dropped her hind feet and took the bar. UGH! Other than that her run was beautiful and I could just kick myself! Sunday Ruby was nuts in Standard. The course started tunnel to Dog Walk to the chute, she was over the DW and into the chute a lot faster than I thought and I ended up having to layer the table. Me layer?!?!?! I never layer. Then jump, teeter, I front crossed and she took off missing the tire and taking the next obstacle (tunnel). I was floored! Did she think we were doing FAST again? Then she takes three jumps to get back to me and I try to get her back on course. I was so flustered (and she was still being a brat) that I ended up not turning my shoulders enough and she took the off-course chute instead of the table. I almost walked her off then but decided I could finish the run with her. Of course she was perfect! Grrrr!
Later in JWW she was perfect again. And I'm really glad she ran it so well. As we were on the line to run, a dog crated near the ring started screaming. Apparently he got his toe stuck underneath the plastic tray pan and the wire crate as they were taking him out. The poor dog yelped and screamed for 2 minutes straight while they tried to help him. It affected a lot of dogs before they ran and the judge came up to me and told me to take my time getting ready to run. I thought that was very nice of him. I immediately got Ruby to tug with her leash and made sure she was happy and ready to play. I gave the judge the thumbs up and off we went; she was moving really nicely on this run and read my deceleration for a tight turn (most dogs headed to the off-course weaves).
This past weekend we did a trial in Manhattan with the Golden Retriever Club of Illinois. We only did Saturday and Sunday as I need to save as many vacation days as I can. =) Saturday went great: Ruby ran for 2nd place in Standard and placed 4th in JWW for QQ #6 toward MACH2. We've already got the points so we just really need the QQ's.
On Sunday we were having a great run in Standard but Ruby decided that she was done after the DW and headed toward the finish jump. I have no idea why she's been doing this lately; the only thing I can think is that she gets pattern trained very easily and at the last trial the Standard course ended DW to finish jump two days in a row. She's probably also rushing to get to the end because she wants her treat...maybe no more bonus for her??? And I will have to really look at the courses from now on and see where we may pass the finish jump so I can make sure I get a head check from her. Brat! The jumpers course I got lost. I really wasn't paying attention to how quickly the trial was moving. I walked the course twice with the general walk-thru and went over to talk to Tammy because I saw she had just run FAST with Lexi. Then I had River out and saw that Susan was doing the briefing. I put him away and went to walk the course a couple more times. I only got half-way thru it when she blew the whistle. I thought I had the course down but I didn't and turned too soon after the weaves pulling Ruby off a jump (funny how she turned tightly there, eh? damn dog). Oh well, no QQ on the line and she finished very nicely.
We have a private lesson with Dana tomorrow so I can address some issues I'm having with both dogs - mostly River's avoidance of certain obstacles (chute, broad jump & panel jump) & handling for Ruby. Only one day of trialing this coming weekend and it's the Novice Only trial for River Puppy on Sunday. Should be fun! =)