Thursday, September 23, 2010

National Finals '10 - Day Three Open

Hot Hot Hot! (and I don't mean my looks- just kidding) Today reached 95 before it started cooling off in the late afternoon. When Maid and Scott drew up it was about at it's peak. Just before their run the sheep were at their worst. Anne Mock had a set that had two stop in the shade of the tree and the other two kept racing down the fetch line. She couldn't get her dog around the runners to take them back up the field and ended up having to retire. Alan Mills and Sis, who was a nursery dog last year that took third in the national finals open double lift in Oregon, had a set of two and two unless they were 5 singles by themselves. He finally had to retire at the drive panels. So we were hoping that when they took a short break to take more sheep to the top that they would improve. We didn't realize it at the time but there wasn't an improvement.

Maid and Scott wait for the sheep to be set
Scott thought Maid was just being on the muscle and stopping late on the fetch and drive away. On the crossdrive she opened up at bit, but what we found out later from the set out people was that she had a very bad single ewe that they had a difficult time setting. When we went back and reviewed the pictures I took, it was much more obvious that there was a ewe that continuously was trying to run off but we didn't notice it so much during the run. Points for Maid! She had a slightly tight outrun and Scott whistled her once but she didn't really take it. However, she bent when she saw them so no harm done. She had a nice lift and a straight enough fetch although Scott was fighting her alot.

Just after Maid's lift
Good turn around the post and a good line, although, not an easy one, to the panels. After the panels they tried to get past her to the exhaust on the left of the field but Maid did some good work getting them broke and back on the crossdrive.

Maid struggles to control the sheep at the drive away turn
There was some line struggling on the crossdrive and they almost missed the panels on the high side but they got it done and took a good shed.

Maid gets her grumpy hot sheep set up for the shed
The sheep are penning very easily so that was not an issue,

Maid and Scott pen the sheep
but like Don, after they took the sheep out, she figured she was done and she was hot so she went to the water.

Maid cools off in the tub before her single but keeps an eye on the sheep
The sheep were standing nicely, so Scott let her have a minute in there to cool down since it had been such hard work and it was so hot. When Scott called her back she came right to the ring and did her single.

Maid and Scott take the single
She ended up with a 163 which currently puts her in 21st place with the top 40 to go to the semis. It looks like she should make it in but tomorrow is the last qualifying day.
There were some more good runs today. Robin French had a another very good run, this time with Zac and Vergil Holland had a great one with Dally. I have to brag a little bit on Dally - Scott trained her many years ago to the pro-novice/open ranch level long before Vergil owned her. Vergil has had her several years and has made many improvements and handled her wonderfully today but I don't think he'll mind us riding on his coat tails a little bit. The other great run that made us proud was Marianna Schreeder and Penny. Penny is out of Scott's Pleat and Fly and he trained her and trialed her before selling her to Marianna. They are a perfect match and she actually runs better for Marianna than she did for Scott. Their run today made us so proud.
Speaking of proud, I couldn't be more proud of Lori Cunningham and Matt unless it was me and Lad. I've always said that Matt is Laddie's brother from another mother because, although he is better than Lad, he reminds me very much of him. I have to point out that you heard it here first when I declared in May of 2009 that Matt was going to be a dog to watch. He ran nursery here at these finals but like me, Lori said she had a handler error (in the same place no less!) and they didn't do very well. The open was another story. Lori stated ahead of time that she wouldn't make that mistake again and she didn't. I just about busted at the seams with pride when they posted his score of 181 today in the open, putting him currently in 7th place!
One more day of hot and one more day of qualifying. Scott is going to run over to Dan King's tomorrow where he has received an invitation to work the dogs again to prepare them for sat. (thanks Dan and Sylvia!) and I will stay behind and enjoy the trial- oh, yeah, and continue to sweat!


Donna Brinkworth said...

Oh Yay for Maid! You know she has a special place in my heart. Good luck to you all! Thanks for the report! Sending positive vibes from Alberta.

sheepkelpie said...

Maid looks like a very good hard working and strong dog!