Monday, June 28, 2010

The Tortoise and the Hare

Just for fun, I checked to see how old each of the boys were when they got their Open Jumpers title. Surprisingly, they were quite close together in age. Wilson earned his at approximately 3 years and 3 mos. Jimmy was only a tad younger at just about 3 years 2 months. I was still pretty new to agility back when Wilson got his OJP, so I didn't think to keep an agility journal on Wilson. But I do know that he earned his OJP in just three tries. He has a certificate from Front and Finish magazine that lets him use the title of FFX-AG for excellence in agility, given when a dog completes a title in just three consecutive tries. I do remember that making course time was always an issue, and we usually used up just about every second of SCT. Wilson is the slow and steady type, an off-course fault was extremely rare. Now, with Jimmy, I am keeping a journal to record each trial we attend, our score, our time, SCT, results, and what might have gone wrong. It took Jimmy 10 tries to finish his OAJ! We have had off-course tunnels, and many, many bars down. Certainly, not all of this is Jimmy's fault. He is just so fast, and my handling skills are honed to Mr. Slow&Steady. Many of my frontcrosses are poorly placed, causing a bar to go done. I never needed a rear cross with Wilson, so my skill with that one is non-existant. More bars go down as a result. And sometimes Jimmy is just trying so hard to go as fast as he can, that he just jumps too flatly. We are working with jump chutes and I can already see improvement.

So I think this is another example of the Tortoise and the Hare mentality. Wilson, a much less driven dog, who definitely seems to stress much more at trials, was able to complete his title quickly. High drive, agility-loving Jimmy was actually alot tougher to handle to a title.

Of course, once Wilson moved to Excellent, and all of his stress manifested at the weaves, it took a very long time indeed to finish that next level. Hopefully, I am not cursing myself by typing this, but I think Jimmy will be a bit speedier through Excellent, at least in Jumpers. Table issues being what they are, all bets are off in Standard!

1 comment:

  1. I never had a rear cross on Sam either - unless it was by accident. I find getting front crosses in with Ra is a struggle, she's too fast. So, get that rear cross down. It will save you - especially the way courses are being designed now.


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