Well it seems like the boys and have been trialing non-stop for the last few months. Not sure what I was thinking a few months ago when I signed up to do back to back regional competitions. Making the 12 hour drive down to Perry, GA is one thing, but then turning around 2 days later and driving up to Bethlehem, PA for NE Regional was a tad crazy. The SE regional was Zip and I’s second IFCS qualifying trial. We were hoping to accumulate some good points this weekend. Both Dasher and Zip were entered in team plus tournament classes. No titling classes were offered this weekend so little Zorro had a “guys’ weekend” with Brandon. As soon as we arrived in Perry and unloaded the car, the boys got to experience one of the highlights of the showgrounds, a much needed swim in the pond.
The weekend had some ups and downs. The competition was tough, Zippy put in some great runs but unfortunately we had a bar in jumpers and a bar in snooker which knocked us from 1st place to 3rd place in both classes. We had a nice standard run and I had a bobble in Gamblers which cost us precious points. We ran IHC Standard on Saturday night and Zip had a great run on a challenging course with a wicked weave pole entry. Zip was a champ and we ended up in 2nd place. Here is his run from IHC standard:
In IHC Jumpers on Sunday we were having a great run until my untimely placed front cross sent Zip off course. We did manage to earn some points toward our IFCS qualifications. Zippy also put in great runs in Steeplechase and Grand Prix, he made it to round 2 of Steeplechase and had a bye in Grand Prix. Sunday we ran finals in both Steeplechase and Grand Prix, Zip had great runs and ended up 3rd in Steeplechase and 4th in Grand Prix. This earned Zippy byes into the semifinals of both Steeplechase and Grand Prix at Nationals in KY. What a little superstar!! What a huge relief to have both byes out of the way for Zip.
Dasher was in rare form this weekend. His contacts were less than stellar which cost us Q’s in Steeplechase and some team classes. Thinking back to his naughty behavior I feel that it was because I really had not had a chance to train with Dasher in a while. He had a long break while I was in England for WAO and the two weeks before we headed to GA, it was scorching hot so I did not get a ton of training in. Dasher did have a very nice IHC standard run on Saturday, unfortunately our teeter was called so no Q for us, but still a nice run.
After a very short break at home, we headed up to Bethlehem, PA. Luckily we had a light schedule. Zip was the only dog entered in all Tournament classes, Dasher was entered in Grand Prix and Steeplechase in hopes to get byes for Nationals plus one titling class. Zorro was entered in only 2 titling classes for the weekend. NE regionals would be our last show for a while and I was definitely looking forward to a break. Zip put in some great team runs, even with a handler induced bobble in team jumpers which cost us a Q in jumpers, Zip still ended up 1st place 12″ dog for team. The bobble in jumpers was again an untimely front cross on my end. Clearly this is something I need to work on. I think I am over rotating in my fronts which is causing Zip to go off course. I need to practice getting my bearings after a front and running in the right direction as I come out of my fronts. Here is Zip’s Steeplechase finals run, he ended up in 2nd place.
Dasher was a completely different dog this weekend. He was such a superstar!! He had great runs in round one of both Steeplechase and Grand Prix on Saturday so we were able to run in the finals on Sunday. I knew if we just ran clean it would be good enough for byes for Nationals. Dasher gave me 110% on both runs and we ended up 2nd in Grand Prix and 1st in Steeplechase!! Here is Dasher’s Steeplechase run:
Zorro ran in Masters Gamblers and Standard. We were hoping to get our last needed standard leg for our P-ADCh. He did great in Gamblers, and got the gamble, but unfortunately we were over time because I bumbled getting Zorro to the first gamble obstacle. In standard Zorro came flying out of the tunnel to the table but unfortunately slid right off the table. I had to laugh as Zorro having that much speed is a good problem to have!! So happy to see little Zorro gaining so much confidence each time we run. All is all a good weekend for the White gang. Both boys have all their byes for Nationals! I feel so lucky to have such wonderful dogs that give me 110% on every run. Even though I was pretty brunt out from traveling, stepping up to the line with each of my dogs made me smile and remember why I love this game.
On a side note, I made a video of some highlights of Zip’s runs at WAO. I was playing around with iMovie so put my video to music..enjoy!!