The second day started out cool but you could feel the heat coming. The first class was Pro-Novice. Tuque gave her usual good outrun and came in deep behind the sheep. Yesterday I didn't want to stop her on her lift because I wasn't sure if she'd lift the very heavy sheep. She had proved that to be no problem so I decided that today we would make sure we had enough control to practice the stop at the end of her outrun. She did it beautifully but still lifted a little rough. I decided to enforce a pace instead of worrying about her line since we were not trying to win this trial but rather get her ready for the Nationals. We missed the fetch panels but for the greater good since she slowed her pace and allowed me to use less stops. Her speed was helpful around the post since the pull to the exhaust had become very strong.
Louanne and Isla had a much better run in the Pro-Novice this time around and even without a pen and many stops on their outrun, they managed to pull off a 4th place.
By the time Hemp ran the heat had come up.
Lad's run was ultimately a retire also. He was so good and worked his butt off for me. He didn't have any of the troubles of flanking on the sheep that he did the day before but he had a lead sheep that took him out of it. Around the course he showed her who was boss and even gave a good shed but at the pen she continuously left the group to jump over my rope. Lad listened and when I told him to go wide behind the pen to bring her back but not disturb the other 3 in the mouth, he did it. He also had to run around that pen several times and every time took his flank the way I asked and with plenty of energy so I was pleased that he was tolerating the heat too. Finally, we had 3 minutes left and I could see she wasn't going in. Lad had been so good and I didn't want to punish him by making him continuously regather her so I called him off and told him what a good boy he was.
It was a very difficult trial because of the sheep but an enjoyable one. I was proud of the dogs for giving it their all and in the end, the handlers that were doing the best were the ones who had the most experience with good dogs. Just what should win. I will get the open placings up when they are sent to me this week. I left before it was finished but I would be surprised if anyone beat Jo Anne Zoerb and her seasoned Brynn who is having a good year. They were in the lead with a 92.
Pro-Novice (unofficial) 17 dogs
1. Dale Montgomery and Jill
2. Peter Gonnet and Taff
3. Dale Montgomery and Ben
4. Louanne Twa and Isla
5. Peter Gonnet and Meg
6. Jennifer Glen and Tuque