Friday, August 31, 2012

Soldier Hollow 2012 - Day One

Today was a shutout for the sheep against the Alta-Pete dogs.  Both Lad and Don ran today and both were the victims of difficult sheep.  All morning long, dogs had been having a difficult time bringing them down the fetch line.  The sheep this year are wily and really want back to that set out.  Laddie had a faultless outrun and lift and had good control of his sheep until shortly before the fetch panels, they got a little off line but then were behind the trees (I swear they are bushier this year) I stepped away from the post as far as I dared to try and see but it was no use.  I couldn't see Lad and I was afraid to really throw him over on a come bye for fear that the sheep would take off for the set out when I couldn't see them.  We missed that panel but got back on line and I tried to not push on the sheep but let them think they were going the way they wanted to go.  As we turned the post and started on the drive there were only minor hints of the problems to come.  We made both the drive panels but the sheep started stalling out on Laddie.  On the third leg of the drive they were really giving us trouble and as one ewe attacked Lad, he gripped her and she moved on.  However, when we got into the shedding ring, she felt it was open season on him and kept attacking.  He was allowed to grip to defend himself but we never got the shed or pen and got a 59.  I don't know if I gave her too much freedom and she got thinking too much of herself or if Lad just wasn't enough dog (or the third option - she was just baaaad) but I am hoping the sheep get better for me on our next run.
Scott didn't have much better luck.
Scott sets Don up on his outrun
 He ran during a terrible windstorm and although it appeared the dogs could hear their handlers during it, the sheep were obviously not happy.  Donnie was slightly off before the drive panels  but then got back on nicely to make the panels.
Donnie brings his sheep on the fetch
 The sheep were hard to move but Scott and Don kept them on the line and made both of their drive panels.  When they got into the shedding ring they were very jumpy and it was difficult to get the shed.  When they finally did, the shed sheep then tried to jump over Don with a spectacular leap.
Sheep jumping Don in the shed ring
 There was not enough time to get the pen but on the way, Donnie tried to pick up their lagging pace and hit a low hock on a late sheep.  It likely lost him some serious points because he finished up with only a 68.
The sheep did an uncharacteristic change in the late afternoon as it cooled off.  They got good.  Really good. Usually this is a bad time of day to run but today it was nice.
The highlight of our day was rooting on Lori Cunningham and William(they ran early in the day- before the sheep got good)  who led most of the day and  finished in 3rd for the day (winning them a spot in the double lift on Monday).  Sure, it wasn't my favorite dog, Matt but he'll have his chance tomorrow.
Today's scores are posted HERE!


Donna Brinkworth said...

Thanks Jenny, as always. Get some rest and good day tomorrow!

Monique said...

Thanks for the update! Good luck to everyone running tomorrow.

Kristi said...

Great leaping sheep pic!