Wednesday, May 13, 2009

First Bluegrass update

OK - I have no official information and the info I do have has big holes in it but I thought I'd give one update so people could get a feel for what is going on. The weather is cool so far but it is supposed to heat up. We've had on and off hard rain but it looks like it might be done now and the wind is picking up (not Alberta wind but a wind). So far, the sheep are winning on the open field. Carnage. The outrun is bigger than last year. I heard one person say 40 yrds longer and another person say 80. It looks like 80 to me. Alasdair is leading with Nap with a 94 and I'd be surprised if he was bumped today. I just ran Lad and got a 55.5 which isn't as bad as it sounds but there were some handler errors that were just stupid. For example, I sent him on a comebye outrun but when he stopped at 3 o clock, I whistled away to me. I didn't realize what I'd done until he started back to me and I thought, "Huh... He's never done that before on an outrun." Fortunately, he hadn't gone too far before my brain kicked in and I gave him a comebye, then he looked hesitant a little further on (can't imagine why) so I gave him one more and that was all he needed to finish the outrun. I heard we lost 7. He lifted and they took off to the right. He caught them and got them straightened out but had to re lift at that point and then I was afraid he couldn't do it. It took him a little while, and whistles were not enough. I asked him up once by hollering "Walk Up" and then tried an "Atta boy. Walk up." Which sometimes gets me into trouble because he might grip (or chest bump since Laddie doesn't really grip) but this time it worked and he brought them down the fetch fairly on line but missed his fetch panels at the last minute. Turning the post could be difficult and some sheep wouldn't go around so I kept a pretty big turn and had a decent drive UNTIL - after I made the crossdrive panels. There is a spot that is hard to hear down there (it's down a hill) and I was so happy to make the panels but Lad hesitated on my next flank because of sound (a huge downpour of rain had also started) so I had to blow him several fast ones because the sheep started to go up the field and he caught them but not fast enough and they came back through the panels! We lost one point on the shed (not sure where) and got NO PEN. I lost the fat, speckled, leader around the pen and circled it twice before getting them in one second AFTER they called time. His best moves came when he was exhausting the next dog's sheep after it had hung and drug on a single. Lad held it from going back up the field for a good 3 minutes and exhausted it without the help of the other two who were racing back and forth on the fence line near the spectators.
I saw Norm Close's run with Gwen and it was rough. Tough fetch but they hung in there. I didn't get a score for him yet. Most scores are in the 50s and 60s for those that even got one. Tommy Wilson and Sly had a 60.
Things are easier on the under class field. The big part is the outrun. I only saw a few runs and got no scores yet but Sleat had trouble on her outrun so Scott used the rest of the run to train on her and he said Whiskey was hesitant on his drive.
I'll get some scores up later and I'll try to take some pictures of the underclasses and Scott and Maid who are supposed to run at about 2:30.

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