Weekend before last, we attended a USDAA trial in a new location at a horse farm near Canton.
We hadn't entered on Saturday since they didn't have Snooker on that day (for me). And it was a very good thing we didn't because it rained, and rained, and rained, all day. The trial was outside on grass and those poor folks were soaked to the gills!
It was still raining on Sunday, but by that time they moved the trial into an open air horse arena with the oddest flooring we've ever seen....a combination of carpet bits and sand. Have to say it may have been different, but all of us dogs loved running on it!
This was a small one ring trial, so Mum only entered me in Snooker on Sunday, and entered Gracie in Standard and Gamblers. Well Gracie had her two runs before me and sure to her 'modus operandi' at new places, she was pretty unfocused. She came back to Mum every time, but Mum had a lot of trouble getting her to do more than three or four obstacles in a row and she would run off a couple of times during her runs. But, DOG, was she having fun!
There was a wall length mirror on one wall of the arena, and Gracie would stop and look at herself one or two times during the runs. Folks told Mum she was admiring herself, but Mum knows Gracie better; she thought it was another dog she could play with, goofy sis.
Snooker was the last event of the day and Mum knew we had to go for it, yet again, to try and get that SQ we need. Many folks had pulled from the trial so there were only about four 16'" dogs and one 12" dog running. And they are all very good, young and speedy.
Mum and I went for four of the five reds with a 7, 6, 5 and 4. It was nice and flowing, a couple of tunnels, six weaves and the rest just one jumps. I ran really, really well; nice and speedy, until Mum came up to the red after the five and got too close to it, so I refused it. She did the same thing on the 2 going into the close and yes, I refused that one too. (That's the result of my current Gamble bubble problem.)
I finally went over those jumps but the refusals cost us some time...time I needed to get through the tunnel, six weaves, tunnel closing and the buzzer went off as I was going into the last tunnel which would have given me 53 points. So I ended up with 46.
That gave me second place in the 16" class. No 16" got the SQ, it went to the one in the 12" height that got the 53 points.
So for the eighth time, I got second place in Snooker going for that elusive SQ. Mum counted up my Snooker Q's and she thinks I have a total of about 12 now. So when I get the last SQ, I may also get my Snooker Champion (maybe even the Bronze, depending on how much longer this takes) title at the same time. (Friend, Elf, will know more about those metal titles that Mum knows :).
The nice thing is that lots and lots of our new friends ran up and told us what a great run it was...and that they are certain we'll get that SQ soon. Mum felt really good about her strategy too, and if not for the two refusals, we would have had those 53 points. We also know we'll get it, since I'm running really, really well, just a matter of time. Mum was super proud of how I ran this run, super proud!
Next trial may be in August, or we may take a day and drive three hours up to TN for a day in June/July...not sure yet. But I am ready!