Saturday, August 6, 2011

Of Wraps and Layering

While I was recovering from my broken ankle, I accumulated several courses that I wanted to try once I was able to run again.  On May 19th, Bud Houston blogged about this Masters/PIII Jumpers course he designed , and I finally got to set it up and run it yesterday.

Used with Permission

Note:  My jump bars are only four feet long, so there is lot's of empty space on the course as I have it set up in my yard.

Bud posed this question in his post:  If 100 handlers and dogs ran the jumpers course above… which would be the more successful turning direction at jump #9?  After running this course, wrapping left is not an option for me.  First of all, in order to achieve any kind of efficient line over 10 and 11 to the #12 tunnel, the handler would have to beat her dog to the far wing of #9 and do a front cross.  No way I'm going to beat Dusty or Belle to that spot.  Secondly, as long as the handler doesn't run right up to the wing of #9 when wrapping her dog to the right, the dog's line to the tunnel is pretty much a given.
However, if the handler gets too close to #9 (red line) in order to wrap her dog right and has to move left to avoid the wing of the #10 jump, that movement may disrupt the dog's line to the tunnel.

To see the effect wrapping in the "wrong" direction can have, watch the effect that wrapping to right around #17 has on Dusty's closing line in his first run.  It was truly ugly.

The first time through, I had trouble getting both Dusty and Belle  from the #12 tunnel to the #13 jump.  It completely escaped me on the course map and the walk-thru that layering the 4/16 jump will cause the handler to draw her dog to the off-course tunnel.  If I had set up a winged jump here, the effect would have been even more pronounced.

In order to send your dog from the tunnel to the triple, you have to apply pressure along the red arrow shown below.  Trying to do so while layering jump 4/16 is not easy--I did manage once with Belle, but keep in mind my jump is four to five feet narrower than the one called for on this course.  It is much easier to follow the green handler's line below and give a timely out signal and verbal just before your dog exits the #12 tunnel as I did on Dusty and Belle's second runs on the video.  

Arguably, you could do the same thing layering 4/16, but the winged jump will impede your dog's view of you.  And if you are too close to the plane of the jump, you will not be able to push in the direction of the red arrow very effectively.

I don't usually set up winged jumps in the field because they blow down.  (Also, I only have three of them.)  However, after running the course Friday, I decided to place wings at 9/19, 10/18 and 4/16, and run Belle one more time to see if they made any difference in our success or lack thereof.

Here's the video of Belle and Dusty running this course:

No comments:

Post a Comment