Friday, March 18, 2011

Elite Regular 15-point Bonus Attempt - Part Three or With a Little Help From My Friends

I finally had the brilliant idea to post my problem with the first challenge on the NADAC Training List.  NADAC Becky (Becky Woodruff?) responded right away.  She suggested that I should not lead out at all.  I took it one step further and started with Belle on my left so that when she came out of the tunnel, I was more or less even with the plane of the dogwalk.  It worked like a charm.

I also tried starting with Belle on my right and crossing the path she took to the tunnel so that I ended up in line with the dogwalk.  That also worked.  To make sure Belle hadn't been pattern trained, I tried starting with her and moving to a position between the planes of the dogwalk and weave poles while she was in the tunnel.  Belle made it as far as jump #3, and then she stopped and turned to me for direction.


P.S.  After I finished this post, Sharon Nelson also responded to my question.  For her, the most important part of distance handling is that you keep moving, even if you have to take small steps in order to do so.  You remain in motion in order to draw the dog's path.  I looked back at the video footage of my bonus attempts and found that I have a tendency to stop and use the BIG ARM to send Belle on.  It results in very choppy and distracting handling.  I think Belle is close to pattern-trained on this course, so I will wait until Monday and see if she can execute the turn over #4 even when I am between the planes of the dogwalk and the weaves if I remain in motion.

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