On the weekend of Aug 27-28, we entered in the Lakes Region Kennel Club Rally trials in Canterbury, NH. This was our first time in AKC Advanced. We had 3 trials, 3 chances to qualify; just enough to earn Tripp's RA title... plus the club was offering a Medallion for new titles that weekend! Ooh, I wanted that bling. No problem, right? This is what happens when I get greedy and overconfident...
Saturday morning. Trial 1. Course featured a jump as the 2nd exercise. Uh oh. I approached a bit faster than I should and Tripp immediately went into agility mode. That meant flying over the jump and running out to find the next obstacle. With none to be seen he proceeded to have puppy zoomies all around the ring, completely ignoring me, AND THEN hopped over the rear fence, taking off across the field!! *Gasp!* I jumped the fence right after him and finally got him to lie down at a distance so I could catch up to him. Spectators were impressed with that, but I was much less so at my need for repeated commands. I also worried that we were disruptive to the team in the adjacent Obedience ring. I am still in shock at Tripp's antics, as he has never flipped me off like that in Rally, nor left a ring by jumping the fence. He definitely had Agility on the brain! One entry scratched. But at least people had a good laugh, Tripp was immensely proud of his brattiness, and we got compliments on how graceful we both looked jumping over the fence. LOL Still, I sure hoped he'd gotten that out of his system! ;-)
Saturday afternoon. Trial 2. Tripped redeemed himself in the ring, earning a 95 and 2nd place. I was careful to approach the jump (which was, thankfully, further in this course) in a very controlled manner this time, however I messed up on the Spiral exercise and did an extra circle around the last cone. Had a feeling it might be wrong as I was doing it. So I lost us 3 points right there. Tripp took the other 2 for poor position and bumping, his usual faults. But overall a pretty good performance, certainly better than the last one! A nice rosette for placement and our first Q with a score that's nothing to sneeze at... I'll take it!
Saturday evening Hurricane Irene was closing in on New England. I remained on the fence about the next day's trial. With no more chance at titling that weekend, I had less pull to attend, but still hated to eat another entry fee and lose a chance at a second Q, esp. if the harsh weather held out till later in the day. I kept things packed up and awaited the morning forecast...
Sunday morning. Trial 3 proceeded indoors as far as I know, but after watching the weather (and deliberating for at least half an hour) there was no way I'd beat the storm if I went. And Irene hit us even sooner than predicted, so I'm glad I stayed home. But there went another entry fee. AKC ain't cheap, you know. Ugh. I suppose after our track record of solid Qs in all past Rally trials, it was bound to happen, but still, that first leg was our costliest Q yet. Then again, I'm sure we'll beat that investment by far in Agility as we do more of those trials! LOL Come to think of it, we probably already have!