The Grand Opening of the new arena at Family Dog Center was a huge success -- Not only for them (largest trial ever!), but also for Secret. She - Was - AMAZING.
The short story is that Secret Q'd in 10/12 runs from Friday - Sunday, earning first place in all but two (and really, one of her 2nd place runs was a "no time" run because they failed to start the timers, so she got SCT). Secret earned her Open Touch-n-Go title as well as her Elite Regular title, going 4/4 her very first time running in Elite!
Friday was just super fun. Everyone was very excited to finally see the new addition at Family Dog Center. It's been in the works for some time, so it was great to see it completed. The turf was a bit slick on Friday (Secret totally face-planted in Tunnelers), but they added a lot of sand to it overnight and I thought it ran very well for the rest of the weekend. There were a lot of unfortunate "accidents" on the turf (of the soiling nature) and Secret ALMOST became one of them, but thank heavens I can read her squat and I got her outside in time. Whew.
Secret seems to like the new arena! She was raring to go from the beginning on Friday and started off the evening with a Tunnelers run that came out at 6.0 yps! By far her fastest time ever!!
She Q'd in Touch-n-Go, earning her Open Title in that class, but the judge was in the middle of the arena and we once again had some issues (although not nearly as bad as last time). Our judge was Lorne McGee, who is about the nicest judge on the planet, so I spoke to him after everything was done on Friday and he was kind enough to come over and spend some time with Secret. I am so thankful for the time he spent with us and his help over the rest of the weekend to get her used to having someone in the ring. He stepped out into the middle for several of our classes and Secret finally seemed to get used to the idea -- So YAY for that!
Saturday started out with two great runs in Elite Regular. I definitely made the right decision to move her up to Elite for this trial -- She handled the courses with ease. I also felt really good about my decision to move her to Skilled, as she just seems so much happier and more comfortable at 16". The 16" Skilled division at Champs is going to be horrendously competitive, but who cares -- We just want to have a good time. :o)
We NQ'd in our first Elite Touch-n-Go run, but I have to take all the credit for that one. If you point at the tunnel, you should expect your dog to take it. lol The rest of that run was lovely, though -- Including a WRAP at a hoop. Can you believe it, a wrap in NADAC?! There was a lot of buzzing in the course walk when that was discovered, but I was thrilled to see something different.
We wandered outside for quite a while before Chances, but apparently it wasn't long enough. Thank goodness that Secret has long legs and it's pretty obvious when she's heading towards the squat position. I stopped her short before she could start anything and excused us from the ring. We barely made it to the grass before she went, so THANK YOU, Secret, for holding it. :o)
Secret rocked the Jumpers courses both Saturday & Sunday. She was moving very nicely and we only had one near off course on Sunday morning when she started to head for the tunnel, but thankfully she listened and was able to turn in time. We like Jumpers courses! One more Q is needed for her EJC title. Woot!
The day continued in marvelous fashion on Sunday. Hoopers was her second class and I picked a pattern with lots & lots of front crosses -- Which is good, because Secret wasn't terribly motivated for this class, but she likes front crosses and it kept her going. She did hoop weaves again! She was the first dog on the line and they didn't have the timers figured out, so she just got SCT for that run.
I wasn't sure about the Chances course for Secret, because it involved being restrained at the dog walk again -- But thankfully I could go with her further than the last time. I thought for sure we were done when she came to me off the dog walk again, but believe it or not, she actually SENT back out to the jump! I about fell over, but was able to compose myself to call her back to the next jump, as it appeared she was on her way to an off course tunnel. The next difficult part for us was a switch out to a tunnel. She did it! From there it was a pretty easy call through a hoop and then a run out. I started celebrating way too early (with two hoops to go, lol), but thankfully she managed to keep running a straight line and we got a much needed Open Chances Q!
Secret was starting to drag by the end of the day (despite the Power Boost supplement I was using for the first time -- but still, when you're tired, you're tired!), so her Regular runs weren't quite as speedy as on Saturday, but they were well under time. My only surprise was that her second run was six seconds faster than the first. While it was happening, I thought the second run was soooo slow, probably because she trotted through two hoops. Watching the video, though, she did make up time nicely in other spots. (Speaking of video, sorry for the poor quality in the last half -- Somehow the camera got turned to "night shot" mode and I ended up with a lot of blurry video.)
Overall, I am just beyond thrilled with her performance. When I first started running her in February it was almost a joke that we might possibly finish our requirements for Champs Qualifiers by the deadline. Well, baby girl ended up just one Chances run shy (I don't count Hoopers, because she's qualified every time we've seen the silly class so there isn't much I can do about that...). I don't know about you, but I think that is pretty darn amazing.
(The boys have videos as well -- If you click on the video it should take you to YouTube and you can find them there!)