So the beagles and I survived our very first USDAA Regional hosted by The Bay Team! It was a very LONG weekend with 5 rings and oodles of rotation groups! I was nervous about even entering, so we kept our entries down to 3 runs for each dog: Saturday Steeplechase Round 1, and on Monday Master Standard and Grand Prix Finals (both boys had a bye! Dylan actually had 2!)
We got there Saturday where I was a co-chief ring steward for the Pink Ring! After getting the day started, we ran Steeplechase in the first group:
DAX’s Performance Speed Jumping, Round 1:
Dax ran really nicely, except we got to the weave poles at the end and Dax thought they should be optional. So he got an E and NQ, but he was still fun to run. And anyway the other dogs in his class set a really fast time, even with him moving, he still wouldn’t have made time.
Dylan’s Dog Agility Steeplechase, Round 1:
Dylan was staring at the fence line before we started, but I thought I got his focus when he ran straight to the A-frame, but he still took off to the fence. I got him back and we finished the course clean, but I never thought in a million years that we could have made time so I never even checked the scores. However, it turns out those crazy tunnels took out the rest of the 14in class and the time setting dog had 10 seconds of faults, so Dylan some how got second place, and a Q for a entry into Steeplechase Finals!
We spent the rest of the day taking care of the Pink ring and enjoying hanging out at the Zuke’s tent! They are a big sponsor for USDAA and the producer of some of the beagle’s favorite treats!
I originally didn’t plan to run anything on Sunday, but since Dylan made it into the Steeplechase Finals, that all changed. Steeplechase was the last thing to run at the end of the day, but since the beagles spent the day napping, I was hoping to have a little baying ball of energy when it was time to run.
Dylan’s Dog Agility Steeplechase FINALS:
Dylan ran well, but I knew after walking it he wouldn’t love doing 2 sets of weave poles. I was right, he bobbled in the second poles, but we still finished clean! The little beagle didn’t run fast enough to get a Q, but he did earn his place on his very first podium!
He got some ribbons and some serious loot!
We came back for the last day, for a warm up round of Masters Standard and Grand Prix Finals! Both Dax and Dylan had Grand Prix Byes, so we skipped round 1 and went straight to the finals. Again, like Steeplechase, Grand Prix was at the very end of the day and was the very last event of the weekend. Everyone grabbed a chair to sit around the ring and cheer people on. I was used to running my beagles, but I had never done it for such a large audience before. It made my nerves fray, but it also made me want to run hard and make it count!
DAX’s Grand Prix FINALS:
Dax had a beagle moment after the #6 jump and when I got him back, I pushed him straight into the off course tunnel. So we got the whistle and an E, but we kept going and finished strong, minus our dogwalk contact and weave poles! (They are over rated anyways!) He ran fast and happy so I was completely happy with the run.
Dylan’s Grand Prix FINALS:
After running Dax, I ran Dylan as hard as I could. He had some slow-ish spots, but for the most part he ran hard with me. The one bobble on the course was mine where I was completely out of position after the weave poles, but I think I recovered and we finished in fine style and CLEAN! The little beagle even made standard course time for a Q, then when the dust settled it turned out that he was only 1 of 2 dogs to actually finish clean which meant he got Second Place for the second time and he got back on the podium!
We made one more stop to the podium before we left for the weekend to get a shot of Dylan and I with all his winnings: two Second Place ribbons, one Q ribbon for Grand Prix bye into the Semifinals at Nationals, two silver medals and two huge smiles one for each member of Team Dylan!
Also, Team Dylan made the USDAA website! We have our podium photos posted along with all the other fantastic teams!
A HUGE Thanks to the judges David Bozak, Evelyn Robertson, Patty Drom, Cody Keraga, and Tammy Domico for great courses and great company!! Thanks to everyone who helped and made the whole weekend run smoothly. And an even bigger thanks to all the competitors who kept an atmosphere of competition but also of comradery! It was so nice to cheer people on and have people cheer me on too!
I know the beagles and I look forward to running at more USDAA Regionals in the future! However, this will be a tough act to follow! Go Team Beagle!!