Wednesday, April 30, 2014

First Advanced Q

Well it's been awhile but I was kind of disappointed at our last agility trial and didn't feel too much like writing. Our last trial was the Saturday of Easter weekend. We had entered six Steeplechase runs, four for Beckett and two with Keltic. It was a beautiful spring day, we haven't had many of those yet. We had a nice drive the trial site and arrived in plenty of time to set up and walk around; the venue is an equestrian centre with many large paddocks to walk the dogs in.

Beckett and I were the second dog on course, I no sooner took off when I felt something pop. I had pulled a hamstring muscle in the same leg that had the calf muscle tear last year. I tried to run the course but couldn't keep up with Beckett. The next run was Keltic's,again I couldn't keep up so rather than make things worse, I scratched Beckett from the rest of his runs. Keltic, since he had run with someone else last summer, I decided I would ask a friend to run him for me in his second run. I probably could have put him in all of Beckett's events but since Keltic has decided he can't weave, there wasn't much point. Keltic ran really well for Jack; at first I didn't think he was going to go but he took off and stayed with Jack throughout the course. After Keltic's second run, we packed up and made the nearly two hour drive home, sitting that long was a little painful. I withdrew from our May trial and am hoping that the leg will be healed by the time of the Regional Championships in June.

The trial the weekend before Easter had much better results. Keltic had two qualifying scores, one in Advanced Jumpers, his first Advanced Q and one in Starter Standard, his first Std Q. It wasn't a pretty Q since because he won't weave on his own I have to guide him through them. The course time was 78 seconds and we took over 74 to complete the course; he should be around the 50 to 60 second range. He also had a good Starter Snooker run, we finished our opening and were running the close; we just needed for Keltic to complete the teeter for the Q but Keltic decided he had done enough teeters;  he put his front feet on the teeter and just stopped. Keltic needs that one Snooker Q for his Starter Games title and two more Standard for his Agility Dog of Canada title but until he's weaving again, I won't be putting him in a Standard.

Beckett had not a bad weekend. He got a Steeplechase Q, his 22nd. Part of the reason why the injury Easter weekend was so disappointing as Beckett only needs three more Steeplechase for his Bronze Expert Steeplechase title and I had thought it might be possible to have finished that title. Beckett had a 5 fault Standard and a Standard that was a total train wreck.
The leg is feeling better but I haven't tried to run yet.  We start classes outdoors the week of 12 May so we'll see, until then we will be taking it easy.

Monday, April 7, 2014


Keltic moved up to Advanced in Jumpers and in Gamblers so this past weekend we had to go both days to the trial. On Saturday, I just took Keltic as he only had two runs, one Jumper and one Gamblers, his debut in Advanced.

First up was Jumpers, I thought jump 3 to the tunnel would be difficult as we have't practiced rear crosses all that much yet and I also though the ending might give us some trouble too. Little did I know that the tire as the first obstacle would be the problem. Keltic went under, the back jumped it, then went under again. This time I got him back around and he finally did the tire.  The rest of the run was really nice. All the things I worried about weren't a problem. He did take down a bar at jump 17 but in all he had a very nice run.  He ran the course in 42.47, the maximum allowed time was 45 second so with all the messing around at the tire he was going well.

Next up was Advanced Gamblers, the main Gamble was A-frame to a tunnel and then another tunnel. Keltic ran the opening I had planned quite well but he wouldn't do the teeter so we will have to work on teeters again once I can get mine out into the yard.  I thought he might just do the Gamble as he likes tunnels and loves the frame. He did the frame just fine but as the second tunnel was closer to me, he didn't go out to the first tunnel so no Q there either. That was his debut in Advanced and I was happy with how he ran, the Q's will come.  We'll be doing K9 Kup again this year and a trialler's agility class  so lots of time to practice.

Sunday both Keltic and Beckett had runs. Keltic had his Starter Standard, Beckett had two Master Standards, a Master Gamblers and a Masters Snooker. Keltic again wouldn't do the teeter so, we got 20 faults for the non-completion and lots of time faults as I spent a bit of time trying to get him on it and getting him through the weaves. He has decided that he can only weave in the basement.

Beckett ran wonderfully well even though the Q rate doesn't show it.  In both his Gamblers and Snooker our openings were great, but in the Gamble he popped out of the weaves in the main gamble and in Snooker knocked a bar on the first jump of obstacle 6 (a three jump combo); we needed 6 for the Q. In his first Standard run, my front cross between jump 8 and 9 was in the wrong position and he went by jump 9.

Master Standard 4 was our last event of the day.  Our last chance for a Q. You can see in the video that Beckett was doing a bit of spinning and I was sure we had at least one refusal probably two so after the run I was a bit disappointed.  I didn't watch video right away so I packed up thinking we hadn't gotten a single Q.  Another competitor told me that Beckett was second with a Q, I was astonished but she went back to check and gave me a thumbs up.  After I watched the video, he doesn't seem to spin as much as I thought he had. For the spinning before the weaves,  the entry on the weaves were off-side so he really hadn't begun his approach to them when he began to spin and on the jump, he turned away and did one full spin but then took the jump so I guess he was just outside the last third of the approach where refusals are counted. The course time was 59 seconds and Beckett ran it in 45.39.  

I'm always happy with at least one Q so I went home happy!  I can't wait until we can get back outside to train.  Regionals is in June and at the rate the snow is melting it will be May before I can get my equipment out.  I didn't enter Keltic in Regionals but I did enter him in Jumpers at Canada Cup, what was I thinking, hopefully the tire won't be the first obstacle.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

No Joke!

Yes, I know it's April Fool's Day but it's also the birthday of the Royal Canadian Air Force.  This year marks the 90th anniversary of the RCAF. I know my Dad would have been flying his Air Force Roundel flag. He was very proud of being in the Air Force.

Dad loved all things to do with aviation. I think that he took pictures of any aircraft that he saw and had loads of books too.  

This is the current Roundel flag of the RCAF. I have one like this, someday I'm going to put a flag pole out front so that I can fly it. Dad's flag was the old Roundel with the Union Jack in the corner where the Canadian flag is on this one.

Scope Wizard

416 Squadron (Dad is in the front row, far right)

Dad on the phone

LAC Stewart
Cpl Stewart

Dad's probably proudly waving the flag today on this beautiful sunny first day of April. Happy Air Force Birthday Dad!