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Sunday, May 11, 2008

Championship classes the saga

We have had a interesting two weekends of shows! Last Monday was a bank holiday here and we went to the Vyne Championship Show. It was Zen's first time back out in agility since pups. I brought her out to this show only because it was a champ show and we have so few Champ shows here. So off we go to the show with Zen and Hex ready to win some champ!

I was extremely relaxed at this show; must have had something to do with still having puppy brain and just being happy to run Zen again. Also maybe the fact that is was a lovely sunny day and we did not need to be to the show until late morning. So a nice relaxing morning and then a drive up to Newbury to have fun with my dogs. I actually almost missed one or two of my champ runs even though I was sitting ringside. HA!

Lisa also was running Chi; so no video as Champ requires so much concentration that we find it hard to video also. I guess we are bad at multitasking; you would think we were men! No actually it is Dennis fault because he wasn't there and he usually does the video. No excuse that he was home watching MY puppies!

These champ results were both good and bad for me. Let's see..Hex got the reserve Champ Ticket to her brother Indy (good that Indy won; bad that he beat Hex!) Zen ran so well but got the reserve ticket also (good that Toni won with lovely Minx; bad that Zen got beaten by a blue merle border collie!) Another good/bad result; Lisa and Chi made it to the finals and ran clear only to be beaten by 2/100 second by Zen! So Chi was 3rd overall and I can see the day that Lisa and Chi get the ticket coming so very soon!

By the way, that monday was Indy and Hex's (and little bro Max)3rd Birthday! Lisa took photos at Vyne; I must ask her for them and will post soon.

Now we come to this Saturday: Beacon Champ. I was really looking forward to this show. It is usually such a nice relaxing day; they have only smalls and medium dogs on Saturday and it is a championship show. Only 4 rings and the dogs get lots of runs; all in all a great show to go to. Good grounds, lots of runs, parking close to the rings; what could be better!

But there was a slight glitch at the show this year.....

For those of you that don't know how our champ classes work. First you have to run the jumping and agility qualifiers. If you don't get eliminated in either of those two classes and you are in the top 50% of the class (up max 20 dogs) you get to go thru to the final. The champ classes are meant to be more difficult. The day you run champs is very long and slightly stressful due to the multiple classes and set running orders

So off we go on a merry way and run the champ qualifiers. The courses were good; not too hard but not too easy. It was hot; the first really hot day we have run in this year. Zen and Hex did well and make it into the finals; as did Nicky and Indy and Lisa and Chi. I think Zen and Chi were 1st and 2nd in the Agility medium and Indy and Hex were 1st and 2nd in the jumping and agility. All was looking good! Then...there was some whispering going on and meetings behind closed doors and then they called all Champ handlers into a room to explain what happened. It seems that there had been a complaint; they did not say who complained. (??!!)It seems that in a Championship class there are required obstacles and if those obstacles are left out; the champ class can be deemed invalid and the champ ticket revoked. (Who knew? I just focus on my dog and my run and try to remember the course! I don't really clock what is going on or not in the course except if I feel it is dangerous to my dog) So because of this complaint; they had to call the KC and get advice. The advice was that THEY HAD TO RESTART THE CHAMP QUALIFIERS! Which meant that all the dogs had to re-run two new jumping and agility qualifiers. So if your dog had made it through to the final; tuff luck! If your dog had previously been eliminated; whoopee for you. But at the end of the day; all the dogs had to start over on a clean slate and run again IN THE HEAT.

( WARNING: Rant ahead) I did think long and hard if I was going to run. I also tried really hard to not feel angry about someone reporting this. After all; jesus it is just agility! There was no moral dilemma here. OK maybe the judge make an error in his course design but really at the end of the day did it make a hill of beans difference?? Whoop-dee-do there was no collapsed tunnel in the course. yeah yeah I know all the rules (now!) and yeah yeah things need to be done by the books. But ARGHHHHHHH! You should have seen some of the poor dogs running once the courses were re-started. They were exhausted. Yeah yeah I know the owners could have pulled them out (and some did) but everyone works really hard to get to champ and it is heart breaker class at best of times! Ohh and by the way, if the person was going to complain why couldn't they do it before we all ran two classes?? Did they think at all of the dog's welfare or how the competitors would feel? (rant over)

The club handled it was well as they could; I still recommend the show! And I hope this doesn't put them off having such a good small/medium show. Lisa says they were still smiling at the end of the night and I heard there was lots of wine flowing AND that some of it was flowing into my little Zev puppy. (see Christine I have eyes and ears everywhere!)

As annoyed as I was about the entire thing; I really tried to put it behind me. Mental management and all that! But it was so hard to keep focus for another two champ qualifiers. Anyway, for the results. Hex and Zen and Indy still made it into the finals again. Hurrah! My two girls really pulled it out for me; how is that for consistent! They were just tremendous and have such love for the game. The heart breaker was Lisa and Chi (who would have been in the finals after the first two runs)but then got eliminated in the 2nd agility qualifier run. I really felt for Lisa; this so could have been her day.

Finally at the end of the day we ran our Champ final. 12 were in the small final; Hex was seeded 11th and Indy was running 12th and last. I watched some of the dogs run and saw a really nice cocker put in a good round so knew it wasn't going to be an easy win and of course, we were being followed by that darn NICOLA Garrett! (ps I am no longer selling puppies to good handlers; crap handlers only allowed to buy my puppies. I am tired of being beaten! ha! PSS Nicky knows I am joking because I am so proud of her and Indy!)

Hex ran really well but I knew that in reality we could only win if Indy made an uncharacteristic error. Off goes Nicky and Indy and they are putting in their usual cool and fast run. At the 4th to last obstacle; I turn to the person next to me and say "She is going to do it again and beat us". And then....Indy makes a mistake! Ohhh so sad yet so happy! :-) Hex has won her 2nd Championship Ticket and needs one more to become the Champion that I know she is. I love this dog!

Then we get to run the medium champ. Zen ran really well; so smooth and tight. She was lying in 1st place up until the last dog to run. What kind of dog was running last you may ask? A BLUE MERLE border collie! ha! Another one! That border collie ran so fast and so smooth there was no way we were going to beat that; so Zen finished with another Reserve Champ ticket. Not too shabby for her first two champ shows of the year. Now only if we could do something about those blue merle border collies.......(and shut up Johanna you can't have one!)

So that's our long champ saga for now. I have video but have to upload it. And by the way; I counted that on the one day of the Beacon show I had 17 runs with 2 dogs. I think Zen ran near 100% clear and Hex wasn't far behind. Bring it on!


Paula said...

I heard all about it today and what a prat the person complaining was, surely it they had a problem they should have meantioned it when walking the course.

Well done to you and the girls.

PS I'm a crap handler can I go on the list please :)

Johanna said...

I am sorry but INMHO the person who complained should be eliminated forever for poor sportsmanship. 1) The complaint could have been made during course walking. 2) Sometimes it pays just to shut up. Better to be silent and let everyone think you're stupid than open your mouth and prove it. 3) Who wants to run their dog AGAIN in that heat??? Unless it was someone who was eliminated and then decided to complaint. Back to my original point of poor sportsmanship!

Lian said...

ditto to Paula and Johanna, whoever was complaining was a PRAT AND NO SPORTMANSHIP!!! We are so proud of you and the girls to run in this heat wave and achieved such a great results, especially the sexy Hexy!! Huge Congratulations!!! The 3rd CC is on its way!!

P/S: I am a crap handler, can I have a pup please?

Karen said...

Blimey what a fiasco !! but really WELL DONE I would have been on my knees with that many runs xx

Anonymous said...

Congratulations to your great win!! I really love your shelties...(ps: I live in Singapore & will not compete with Hex or Zen...can I be on your puppy list too?)

Shanice & Nova

Hudsondoglets said...

Well done to Hex and Bernadette on gaining your second ticket, we're sure the third one will follow soon. Also well done to Zen on another reserve ticket.

Lorna said...

Some fab runs Well Done :o)

Such a shame for Chi (and others in the same circs) after qualifying the first time round :(

Lorna x