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Grand Prix/PNS from the Central Valley of California

The thermometer showed 97 degrees, but how hot were the teams on course? By Tania Chadwick

Those of us in Northern California enjoyed a three day trial hosted by NAF during the first weekend of June.  Along with titling classes at all levels, we were treated to all three tournament classes as well. The Grand Prix class, judged by Les Sanders from Woodstock, Illinois, offered some fun and interesting challenges.  

The opening appeared to be a straight forward arc of jumps to the weave poles, but surprisingly, many teams missed the entry to the weaves.  Those who led out and approached the weaves with the dog on their right side had much more trouble versus those that crossed behind their dogs at jump #3.  The "lead-out handlers" might have just over run the entrance to the weave poles.

The next combination was an A-frame/tunnel discrimination which can cause teams a lot of trouble, but on this day it didn't pose too much of an issue.  The next sequence involving the chute-tunnel combination resulted in a display of many varieties of handling choices.  Some handlers chose to work the chute to tunnel segment by standing near the down contact of the A-frame, simply calling their dogs to the tunnel entrance, with a push to the teeter.  Some handlers chose to do a front cross between the chute and tunnel, which put them in a position to call the dog to the teeter, while others simply sprinted to the pocket between the chute exit and tunnel entrance to guide their dogs through the sequence.

A few areas that looked to be more dangerous on paper were the potential off course tire before the dogwalk and the #13 - #14 jump combination.  Most teams made the turn to the dogwalk without incident, and although the approach to #14 looked challenging, dogs didn't go as wide as many thought.

The run for home allowed dogs to open up and get some speed while winding back through the opening of the course to the end.  Handlers just needed to keep a cool head and avoid getting caught up in the adrenaline rush of the finish.

Judge Les Sanders was a great sport to weather the Central Valley heat and oversee the 123 teams that tried to conquer is course.


Grand Prix

1. Sera, Shetland Sheepdog - Wendy Wallace 47.11
2. Meimei, PW Corgi - Jennifer Chuang 40.07/20

1. Swish, Shetland Sheepdog - Wendy Wallace 39.48
2. Skye, Shetland Sheepdog - Anne Kajava 40.83
3. Jagger, Shetland Sheepdog - Cindy Glantz 41.64

1. Pickle, BC - Alicia Nicholas 33.99
2. Epic, BC - J. Dunn 34.13
3. Kelly, Mix - Sue Loeffler 35.53

1. Hobbes, BC - Rob Michalski 33.94
2. Tala, BC - Greg Leal 34.65
3. Brody, BC - Jim Aitken 36.91

Performance National Standard

1. Tater, Pomeranian - Raymond Jang 48.07/5
2. Olie, Papillon - Peggy Nostrant 63.71/8.71
3. Moose, CW Corgi - Alicia Nicholas 40.33/15

1. Scout, Shetland Sheepdog - Laurie Leach 43.16
2. Wisp, Min. Silken Whippet - Candy Gaiser 51.71
3. Stetson, Shetland Sheepdog - Gail Evans 56.36/10

1. Riot, BC - Nancy Gyes 35.52
2. Wicked, BC - Nancy Gyes 36.13
3. Cru, BC - Sarah Johnson 38.69


1. Annabelle, Australian Shepherd - Liza Buckner 38.98
2. Indy, Labrador Retriever- Denise Evans 39.96
3. Mike, Golden Retriever - Linda Wargo 42.51/5

Tania Chadwick operates Fortis Agility in San Jose, California, competes with her Border Collie, Kidd, and tries to keep up with her three-year-old son.


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