Saturday, March 2, 2013

Dottie- 26 inch Southwest Regional Grand Prix CHAMPION!!

Dottie and her GP loot

Last weekend we all headed out to Arizona for the Southwest USDAA regional.  Fancy was on a team with ffluffy's papillon, Hoh, in order to get him a Q for Nationals, and Dottie was on a team with ffluffy's border collie Bob and a different friend's papillon, Swinger.  Fancy and Hoh got a Q, but Dottie, Bob and Swinger did not.  Dottie ran very well in all of her team classes; she took 4th in Snooker and had nice times and no Es in anything except the last class- Relay, where I sent her off course.  She was also entered in Advanced Standard and did not Q in that- up contact the first day and 1 bar the second day.  She got a Master Gamblers Q as well.

Fancy had lots of good runs, but NQed in Grand Prix due to me putting her in the wrong side of a tunnel.  She ran clean in Steeplechase, but wasn't fast enough to make the cut off.  Too many fast border collies.

Pie was only entered in Steeplechase (the preferred division- 22 inches) and she made the finals.  I messed up her weave entry and her back couldn't bend enough to hold onto the tricky weave entry.  So no prize money for her.  Poor Pie and her very stiff back.

Dottie also made the Steeplechase finals and had a really fast run with the second to last bar down.  I believe I called her right over top of it.  However, somehow our time was still fast enough to get us a bye into one of the rounds of Steeplechase at the Nationals.  I'm not really sure how that works, but I'll take it!

The big news from the weekend is little Dottie won the 26in Grand Prix!  This is the big class of USDAA and is quite unexpected. 
Like most people, I usually only report on my dog's successes, so ya'll might be under the impression Dottie is some kind of amazing agility dog.  I think I've made some reports on our struggles here, but perhaps not enough to give you the most true picture.  The truth is she started off as a terrible agility dog with little interest in the game. I frequently considered giving up on agility with her. But for many reasons I stuck with it and she has been improving, especially recently. Then, on Sunday she WON the 26 inch Grand Prix at the Southwest USDAA Regional in Arizona. This is actually a pretty big deal; I'd say usually the team that wins is a team who has the goal of making the World Team or at least winning the Nationals. We were only there to hang out with friends and see if we could get a DAM team Q. It was really unexpected for my little girl to beat some hugely talented teams- uberly proud of her! While she still isn't terribly consistent, her speed, excitement and overall attitude have all improved and we have started to work as a true team. I don't have delusions of grandeur and I'm still realistic about how "good" we really are, but on Sunday, Feb 24th, we were the best team on that day in that location. And considering my general awkwardness in handling and Dottie's lack of agility lineage that is a pretty good accomplishment for us.  ffluffy is right- it is great to have a naturally talented and amazing dog, but it is also quite a feeling to know you actually succeeded in squeezing blood out of a stone.
SW Regional Champion- my little Dottie- who would have thought!
A different ribbon for the same run.
Here is a video of her winning run:
And here is a link to the USDAA page showing the winners.  Not a very flattering of picture of Dottie wanting to meet the border collie next to her.
Click here to see Dottie's Official Picture!  Scroll down just a little.

On the Thursday before we left for Arizona, we were in an AKC trial and Pie did not Q at all (how often does that happen?) but Dottie got Double Q number 10.  Now she is 1/2 way to her Mach!