On at the same time as the small dog Olympia semi-final was the "last chance" Large dog semi-final. (The large dogs have multiple semi-finals during the year as there are more large dogs competing). This was our only small dog semi-final.
The KC tries to make the semi-finals run like Olympia with commentators announcing each handler and dog for the spectators. We are supposed to fill out a little comment card with our names and details along with extra comments on our dogs and ourselves. It is supposed to be something like "Hex and I are super dooper handlers and have won 10,000 major finals and one million champ classes to make us like the bestest team evah". I just can't do this as I am really quite modest and usually end up leaving it blank. Sometimes I like to see what the commentator fills in on his own and they are usually quite nice. Some people write funny things but I am just not clever enough to think of them at the time. Some people are very sweet and write loving and tender things about their dogs. I do not want to be too sentimental in my comments as bursting into tears before my run is not conducive to a winning run. I cry way too easily!
This is one of our most popular commentators, Dave Ray. He is really good at speaking in front of crowds and I envy people who can do that! I would be stuttering and um-uhh-ing all over the place.
But...let's face it...Dave is getting older. So we need new blood in the dog-agility commentating world. Here he is brushing up on the line-up sheet so that he can get the names correct.
It was good to watch the large dog handlers (real proper handlers) compete over the same course as us; which is not typical because usually they compete over different courses. The large dogs handlers really had to go for it as only 5 got thru on their semi-final. Tracey ended up in the "unlucky" 6th place spot which then became lucky because one of the top 5 handlers had 2 dogs qualified. For Olympia, you can only qualify one dog in each height division. This happened again in the smalls when Miranda qualified both of her shelties; so the "unlucky" 11th handler in smalls was very happy! I am not sure why they only allow one dog to qualify per handler as if they qualify they should be able to run! But I am sure there is some very good reason that I do not know about. Or maybe it is because they know that only the most fit person can actually run around the huge Olympia course TWICE! haha I am lucking that Hex and Zen are in different height classes so I get to run both of them at Olympia. Also I am grateful that they are competing on different days so that I will have time to catch my breath in between runs!
Here is the small dog line-up for Olympia 2008. Hex looks like an angel in the photo but only 5 seconds before was trying to kill Miranda's boy sheltie who dared to sniff her. You got to love the wicked one.
Now you would think they would learn to pose! What is with these large dog handlers? Do they use up all their energy running their real dogs around the agility course? I think am going to organize a training day on photo posing; people will be lined up to attend. Along with my DVD on strategic finger pointing I should finally become rich on agility!