No rest for the weary


My favorite event of the year, AKC World Team Tryouts, is in just 27 days!  After getting ready for Nationals, there’s no downtime, just time to start prepping for something completely different.  Of course, we think about this event all year, but there’s definitely extra focus in the next month.  Lots of work, and still need to allow time for rest days.

It’s been 1 week since coming home for Perry, and we’ve built and run two courses from AWC Judge Mirja Lapanja.  Her courses require the ability to commit your dog to an obstacle and leave, trusting in that performance.  There are technical portions, followed by a speed section, and then another technical section.  I’m really enjoying running them, but they are definitely outside the norm for us. I feel like we have the skills for each section, but the real trick is keeping it together the whole course, and being able to get to your next spot. 🙂

Skill-wise, I’m trying to beef up a couple of things.  I’ve been very happy with our running dogwalk, but I’d like better hits on the aframe, so I’m getting more aframe reps in for the next month, and playing with a couple of things to help her drive downwards better.  I’m also proofing the weave poles.  I especially would like for her to drive ahead of me independently better, so I’ve pulled out the channels and we’re working on that.

On the Lapanja courses, I’m focusing on getting my verbal cues out faster.  I’m trying to trust Trek and leave, moving onto the next thing.  Because I end up further ahead, I’ve been able to do more blind crosses.  And she is running fantastic–I really feel like she’s peaking at the right time.  I also know it’s impossible to run every course and every variation.  So I’m making a point of pulling up her courses and thinking about how I would choose to handle them, and visualizing it.  Before running a few, it was tough, but now I’m a lot more comfortable making decisions about what I would want to do, and feeling like I can get there to do it.  I trust Trek’s skills, now we just need to get out there and execute.

Are you going to World Team Tryouts?  What are you doing to get ready?


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