Saturday, March 17, 2012

Heppner 2012

Once again I am left to mind the home fires while Scott attends the Heppner, OR St. Patrick's day trial.  I would love to see this trial some day but we have too many customer dogs here to take on the road yet, and lambing has just finished up.  Scott traditionally goes to this trial and then heads to Washington State to give a clinic and lessons at Fido's Farm.  I have to rely on hearsay  since I've never seen it but I've been told the sheep are always difficult so maybe it's best I stay home and get a little more training under my and my dogs' belts before we start our trial season.
Scott uses this trial as a test to see how his dogs are going to work in a trial situation after a winter at home.  It shows him what he needs to work on, and what is working well.
Don ran fairly early in the day.
Don - photo by Diane Pagel
 He had a good outrun and fetch.  He made all his panels, but Scott said he was a little off on his crossdrive line.  He felt that he should have given Don his sheep a little bit more and relaxed on his control of him.  Don did what he was told but taking command of his sheep wasn't as easy with Scott holding on to him tightly.
Don convincing a ewe to move - photo by Diane Pagel
 He had a good shed
Scott and Don shed two off - Photo by Diane Pagel
 but didn't make his pen.  Scott took some good natured ribbing about not finishing, with several people telling him he should go back and watch his own penning videos! Don ended up with a 74.  Scott knew that with some of the real good handlers still to go, that the run was likely to fall in the standings and shortly after, Patrick Shannahan with Andy laid down an 85 that held through the day to win.  It was pointed out on facebook that there just couldn't have been a more appropriate  person to win on St. Patrick's day.
This was June's first open trial.  I was very nervous about her first walk to the post.
June fetching her sheep - photo by Diane Pagel
 June has often expressed her disagreements with sheep with her teeth and since the Heppner sheep have a reputation, I was worried.  Scott had worked all winter on smoothing her out but she can have sharp, quick movements that upset sheep so I kept my fingers crossed that she would remember her training.  I shouldn't have worried!  She was a very good girl.
June turns her sheep around Scott and the post - photo by Diane Pagel
 Her outrun was good, and her lift wasn't perfect but she got them coming and Scott said she stopped when she should and she moved them when she should.  Her eye never held her back and she was brave with the sheep.
June and Scott pen the sheep - photo by Diane Pagel
 She ended the day with an 80 and was second in the first round earning her first 9 points as an open dog.
Tomorrow they go again.
Many thanks to Diane Pagel for scores and pictures and to Monique who put me out of my misery early on and gave me a June update on facebook!

Heppner St. Patricks Day - Open (52 dogs)
1. Patrick Shannahan and Andy 85
2. Scott Glen and June 80
3. Maggie McClure and Lil 78
4./5. Francis Chai and Loon
       Vickie Close and Gael 77
6./7. Angie Unitz and Butch
       Lavon Calzacorta and Gus 76
8. Scott Glen and Don 74
9. Ray Coapman and Jill 72
10. Diane Pagel and Nan 67

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