Funny, not many people would be excited to say their dog got hit. But in the obedience world it translates to High in Trial - performance's version of Best in Show. :-) This will be Tripp's third time going HIT in UKC Rally! To make it extra special, the award coincided with him finishing his level 3 title. Next step is Rally Champion!
Saturday was a long day. We got up at an ungodly hour of the morning to drive to Franklin Mass, where the Weston Dog Training Club was holding UKC Rally trials at Masterpeace training center. I paid extra for day of show entries, as I didn't dare pre-enter with the weather still iffy. Indeed, the morning started off snowy and roads were slick in spots, and we still chanced it. All this and I had no idea how we'd do in the ring, being rusty from slacking off all winter. Thankfully it was all worthwhile.
Trial 1 was a nicely flowing, challenging course. We weren't perfect, but did no worse than expected. A few "out of position" faults but otherwise not bad. Our final score was 97; much better than I anticipated! We also took 2nd place in our class.
Once again we got some "free run thrus" too, as we stood in as honor dog and working dog for another team, doubling our time in the ring. Tripp did a fine honor, but neither of us were nearly as good on course, as we got a little silly and zoomed through as fast as we could. Hey, why not, it didn't count! Not sure what we would've scored but despite many minor faults we made, I bet we still could've qualified with it (barely) if speeding through was allowed. Definitely would've got best time! LOL In any case we had fun, even if it wasn't the best practice session. ;-)
Trial 2 had another challenging course, but we had a really lovely run. We were much smoother this time and Tripp kept better position. I'm so proud of him for getting back into heel so well after a jump every time; something we usually struggle with. I almost went the wrong way at the spiral exercise but caught myself and bumped into Tripp as I adjusted our direction. The judge was nice and let it slide. Tripp did also bump me with his nose several times which surprisingly we didn't get points docked for either, our only deducted fault being a slow response at the start line due to distraction (the Honor dog, I think). So we finished with a 99 and 1st place in class, and that completed URO3 title.
An interesting tidbit - Donna Blews-Pappas was our judge this weekend. She was also the judge at our very first UKC rally trial. I don't recall showing under her at any time in between. I think it's kind of neat that the same judge gave us our first and last legs. Not to mention some lovely prizes both times! (We took 1st in class at that first trial, winning a pretty picture frame storage tin, which now sits on my desk with our level 1 win photo in it.) This time we only got the usual ribbons for Q and placement, plus a lovely rosette for new title, but as the group filed out of the ring, the stewards and judge grabbed me and said "we need you to stay here." Huh, I wondered what was up. Maybe there was a scoring glitch or she was just going to go over our performance with me... And then they proceeded to award us High in Trial! Wow. How cool is that? :-) Prize was a beautiful engraved silver plate with the club's logo and show/award. Pictures don't do it justice.
On another note, this is only our second event of the year, and we are already seriously short on wall space... That whole retirement at 3 idea may not be a joke! LOL Yeah, okay, you know that's not happening. But seriously, I may be able to squeeze in 5 or 6 more normal size ribbons, but then I will officially have to find somewhere else to hang our prizes. Really don't want to just stash them in a box somewhere. I've always liked the Q ribbon wreath idea, and I hear some people make quilts with their ribbons. Ha! Wouldn't that be something - I could have a dog show ribbon quilt and a dog hair knitted scarf (I've collected several bags of Tripp hair for spinning into yarn). Ooh, why not a quilted ribbon vest to wear with that scarf? LOL Sounds a bit quirky to me. Guess I'm doing something right! ;-)