Friday, September 13, 2013

I Didn't Think I Could Do It

I'm currently auditing a class at Agility University, and one of my classmates posted the Masters Challenge Jumpers course from the USDAA North Central Regionals.  It looked complicated, so what the heck I set it up.  Then I walked it and reality came crashing down on me.

The distance from 10 to 11 is about 25' and the #2 jump is certainly seems like a very logical off-course.  The simplest way to handle it would be to get to the right standard of the double before your dog.  However, that certainly isn't going to happen for Belle and me.  I thought my best option would be a front cross between 9 and 10 in order to collect Belle before she took the double.  However, getting from 4 to 7 takes a little bit of handler participation, so I didn't really think I could even get in a blind cross between 9 and 10.  As it turned out, Belle slices the double very nicely and a blind cross and my running toward #11 were all that was needed.  No need for any collection cues until a stride or two before #11.

Going through the gap from the weaves to #13 was part of this week's lesson at Agility U, so I at least had a plan for this challenge.  Biggest problem I ran into here was being late in calling Belle to my side.

The remaining challenge is getting from 17 to 18.  I thought the tunnel might be an attractive off-course, but it really wasn't.  I tried two different ways of handling #17.  Both times I was pretty far behind Belle because of the second threadle at 15.  First time, I ran toward 18 and used a switch command as Belle landed after 17.  The second time, I had Belle wrap 17 to the right (toward me) which enabled me to catch up to her a little bit.  Both ways, I had to rely on switch commands and "remote" rear crosses to finish the course.  However, although wrapping 17 seemed a little awkward, it enabled me to catch up just enough to tighten Belle's path on the remaining jumps, and it made the close seem a lot more controlled.


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