Mike and Laura Hanley's Trial, just outside of Lexington, Kentucky is always a wonderful trial. In tonight's handler's dinner (above and beyond the small price they charge) they spoke of this possibly being their last year. I wanted to scream "NO!" Hopefully they will change their mind and they will find sheep again next year. This year's sheep are provided by Vergil Holland and are the same sheep we used last week at Shaker Village. I love these sheep. They are a crossbred flock that are healthy, fit and sensible. They are also very good looking sheep.
Our judge Linda Tesdahl, is doing a great job and fortunately doesn't have bad weather to worry about. It was a perfect dog working day. Sunny but with a cool wind that is keeping the temps in the 60's.
The course is on rolling hills that make the crossdrive dip quite a bit with a very tricky crossdrive panel. Everyone thinks they are high and ends up missing it low.
Hemp ran 4th this morning and didn't start out very well. I needed an away flank on the fetch to make the panels but he gave too much ground. I asked him to walk up to bring in that flank but he just slipped back behind the sheep which kept them off line and missed the panels. With the caliber of competition, I knew we were out of it with that panel missed. I usually walk off when that happens but I decided to train on him and see if I could impress upon him to smooth out. I felt like it was a good choice -we'll see tomorrow. We did finish the course and got a final score of 71. I did have nice turns around the drive panels which was nice to have because I've been working on that.
Scott ran Donnie in the late morning and did very well.
Scott ran Maid in the afternoon but she didn't have a great go. There was some confusion at the top and Scott wasn't sure what happend. She ended up overrunning the sheep by quite a bit. He had to send her back and it was sloppy enough that he decided to train on her like I did with Hemp. Maid's final score was a 75.
Lad's run wasn't too bad. He had a good outrun (I know- go figure!) and a decent lift. A few bobbles on the fetch but a nice turn on the post.
Alasdair MacRae and Nap won today with a 94 and Bob Washer and Briggs were just behind.
Open 1 - 61 dogs
1. Alasdair MacRae and Nap 94
2. Bob Washer and Briggs 91
3. Allan Hickenbottom and Vic 89
4. Allan Hickenbottom and Meg 87
5. Scott Glen and Don 87
6. Vergil Holland and Brook 86
7. Christine Henry and Tweed 86
8. Jennifer Glen and Lad 86
9. Robin French and Zac 86
10. Alasdair MacRae and Star 83