29-08-2015 Sarah Connell - The Dutch Obedience Society

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29-08-2015 Sarah Connell

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Show Report
Show: Dogcenter Kerkwijk
Date: 29/08/2015
Class: Novice & Class A
Judge: Sarah Connell
Dutch Obedience Society - Dogcentre, Kekwijk - 29/8/15
Judge - Sarah Connell
Part 1

Our Dutch adventures began at the ungodly hour of 4am on the Thursday when we had to catch our flight to Amsterdam at 6.15am. Whose crazy idea was this says I, actually, I think it was mine – moving swiftly on!!!! 
 Anyway, for once team Summerfield and Connell managed to check in baggage and everything airport related without a hitch and even had time to throw down a cup of coffee before boarding our plane. Amsterdam welcomed us with grey gloom but undeterred we caught a train to central Amsterdam, stowed our luggage in the left baggage lockers and set off for our days sightseeing. 8 miles we walked, probably 4 of them around in circles when we were a bit lost and 7 of them in the pouring rain! No, seriously, we really did walk 8 miles and a good part of it was in torrential rain. Our getting lost bit added about an hour on our travels as all roads seemed to lead to the same flaming museum no matter which way we went! So by now Brits on tour were a tad on the damp side (understatement), especially Rob. However, we maintained our sense of humour and apart from our pop up map becoming a non-pop up but very soggy map, everything else survived the soaking! As a result of our museum episode we were an hour behind schedule so by the time we got on our train to our destination we were definitely running late! Having found ourselves seats and stowed our luggage, we sat back for a comfortable trip whilst resting our tired feet only for the lights to go out and some announcement made – then everyone got up and got off the train!! Having no clue what was going on, we nudged the very handsome chap opposite me (he was in his own world of headphones and book) to suggest he might like to get off the train too and, by the way, whats going on! Anyway, thankfully a further train was available in another half hour so all was not lost. So, somewhat later than anticipated we arrived at our stop to be met by Martin and Esther who, no doubt, were swearing madly about us as it seems they had been waiting for us for about 2 hours!! We are SO sorry, good start or what! This clearly left an impression on Martin as he kept us on a tight schedule from then on, ensuring we weren’t late and if we were just a tiny bit late, he came looking for us!
When we arrived at the DogCentre, both Robs and my jaws dropped. WOW, what a place – no less than 10 purposely converted barns, all (except the agility barn) with brick weave, non-slip floors and centrally heated, a large Restaurant area, showers and loos, plus lots of outside space including 2 exercise fields and a well manicured field for competitions. Jealous or what!! Never have I seen such a vast amount of dog dedicated space in one place, definitely a dream come true in my world.
So, Rob and I got settled into our little home for the next 4 days, a lovely caravan, full of goodies including one of those coffee makers you put the pods in, kettle and all the coffee and tea you could possibly want, plus a basket of biscuits, crisps etc. As those who know Rob, she ain’t no camper, so a quick crash course in how the overnight loo worked, where the light switches were and how the door closed was conducted. Great, what could go wrong!
Friday was a day to chill and also to get to see where the rings for the weekends competition were and to organise where everything was to go. By Friday evening various campers were dotted around the venue, the weather was good and everything was ready. Time for beer, super.
Come Saturday morning the weather was looking a bit changeable, however, over the course of the morning things got warmer and warmer. I was able to conduct my stays outside as they were early and there was enough shade to allow every dog to be out of the sun. Robs stays were, however, a bit later in the morning and the shade was disappearing so stays were conducted inside one of the lovely cool halls. Saturdays judging for me was for classes Novice and A, the results of which are as follows:-

Novice Class – Ring Steward Anja de Pagter, Score Yvonne
A lovely class to Judge. Happy handlers and happy dogs. Sadly had a few casualties in stays which is always such a disappointment but all those affected did some lovely training in the ring to compensate. My heelwork round consisted of a large right hand circle with a little bit of straightwork out of it. It was great to see how the vast majority of teams had no problem with the right hand circle and in fact did better on it than on the turns!

1st Place, A very surprised (Goodness knows why!) Nicole Krolik with Betty lou Vom Streitwald (Betty), Malinois – lost 2 1/2 . Oh my goodness what a cracking team. Smart handling by Nicole with super fast responses by a very well trained Betty made this a superb pairing. Lovely heelwork position with the just the odd loss of position, the turns being the main area of error. Retrieve was done at the speed of light! How Betty actually stopped in the present without propelling Nicole into outer space was beyond me - an awesome sight to witness – added to which it was almost perfect, just very slightly off centre. The same speed was repeated in the recall but this time Betty was spot on in her present position! A truly excellent performance – I just loved the drive and attitude of this dog and the beautiful calm and smooth handling . Many congratulations, I am sure you will progress very well

2nd Place, Natalie Knaack-Enkelmann with Independent Spirit’s Kentucky (Kentucky), Malinois – lost 2 ¾’s. Another awesome dog/handler combination. This dog just oozed power and drive. Beautifully trained with a fabulous heelwork position. Really gave Nicole and Betty a run for their money and will no doubt go far. Heelwork was just super, however, Kentuckys recall was a little messy today with a crash into the present, clearly hasn’t got such strong brakes as his female friend above, which made him off centre and finished off with a crooked sit. So close to winning but a great weekend for you as you won the next day

3rd Place, Sandra Rohrer with I’m Freezing vom Chiemgauer Lanchen (Freez), BC – lost 4 ¼. Another fabulously trained dog with a great heelwork position. Minor errors in heelwork caused loss of marks and definitely up there with the above 2 dogs. Set exercises were a little messy today, in retrieve a slight pounce on the article, off centre present and crooked finish lost marks and the recall being the most expensive of all when Freez decided to go directly into the finish position instead of the present, however, I think I heard you say you had actually given him the wrong command as he went to present so he did what you asked him to do! Another team who had a fabulous weekend, winning Pre-Beginners and B – yes you read that right – and this place all on the same day! Many congratulations to you.

4th Place, Monique Barten with Zeno Joy’s Shadow van Loil’s Bosslag (Zeno), BC – lost 5 ½. Good performance by Monique and Zeno. Heelwork needs tightening up a little as Zeno tends to loose position especially on turns – the circle work was well executed. Retrieve was a little mouthy on his dumbell and his present was off centre. Recall produced a very off centre present when he got distracted but you got him back with you so well done to you.

5th Place, Sandra Tournaye with Canen Little Miss Giggles (Giggles), BC – lost 6. I was very impressed by Sandras handling which definitely bought out the best in Giggles. Heelwork saw some loss of position but your good handling bought her back and kept her happy. Retrieve was generally good but a knock on of the dumbell and an off centre present lost you some marks. Recall on the other hand was super with just a slightly crooked finish dropping a mark. Well done.

6th Place, Miriam Hahne with Dumf an Galwy Hocus Pocus, BC – lost 7. A super little collie dog who finds it very hard to contain herself. Surging in heelwork causes her to lose position which in turn loses her marks. Great attitude to her work, just needs to be ‘collected’ in her pace so as to maintain her position. Retrieve and recall were lovely and fast but in both cases her presents were off centre and her finishes not straight. Well done though Miriam, she has improved greatly since last year.

Class ‘A’ – Ring Steward Karin Stegmeijer, Score Willem
No circle in the heelwork this time but a fairly straightforward letter E pattern which tested all turns. Unfortunately the turns seem to be the recurrent fault with everyone one way or another so those with the tightest turns definitely came out tops today. Bet I know what you will all be practicing!! Out of 16 teams, 7 broke stays, all of those 7 broke the sit stay despite being allowed to face their dogs should they wish and 1 broke the down stay too, which was shortened owing to the heat. Scent didn’t alter things much, thankfully, except for poor Brigitte who was sitting in a good place only to bow out there frown-emoticon Please forgive me for the lack of names in this report, however, my name sheet was missing, sorry!

1st Place, Trudi Groenenboom with Abfab soo Cheeky (Cheeky), WS – Lost 4 ¼. The best work I have ever seen Cheeky perform. Lovely heelwork position throughout, some loss of position on turns but minimal. Retrieve produced a solid performance with just a slight off centre present. Recall most expensive as an over-run on the pick-up caused a wide pick-up. Finished off with a strong and confident scent. Well done Trudi, I was very impressed with Cheekys improvement.

2nd Place, Nicole Krolik with Betty lou Vom Streitwald (Betty), Malinois – Lost 5 ¾. Another powerful and confident performance by this pair. Again slight loss of position on turns and an extra command when you ended up on the ropes but nothing that cant be sorted out easily enough. Retrieve was again done at the speed of light and so was the recall. Watch your hand position on the pick-up on the recall as you were penalised slightly for it moving! Scent was textbook, except for the retrieve bit of it when Betty mouthed the cloth a little. Great result though Nicole, very well done.

3rd Place, Karl Bosch van den with (I think) Ink of Maranns Home (Ink), BC - Lost 6. Very nice team. Heelwork showed a good understanding between dog and handler but some loss of position throughout the exercise caused loss of marks. Retrieve was a bit messy with Ink not being straight in the sit before starting then knocking on the dumbell. Recall produced a wide pick-up and loss of position but otherwise good. Confident scent, however, a pecked cloth and arrived in the present rather off centre. Well done though Karl, a lovely team all said and done.

4th Place, Amanda, sorry no further details – Lost 6 ½. A dog who lacks confidence at the moment but clearly has the ability. The lack of confidence caused loss of position throughout but turns especially need some work as loses position into and out of the turn. Retrieve produced a very off centre present and a crooked finish. Recall well executed and one of the better ones with just a slightly wide pick-up being the error. Great scent but unfortunate drop of the cloth but picked it up immediately and presented/finished perfectly. Well done Amanda.

5th Place, Claudia, sorry no further details – Lost 10. Handler errors from this team were more than the dog with stopping on turns being expensive! Also an extra command (shoulder) on the halt! A keen retrieve produced a crash into the handler on present, albeit it was straight. Also mouthing of the dumbell! Recall was expensive, a very extended signal given by Claudia for the pick-up and and extra command at the halt for the dog to sit. Finished off with a good scent despite the odd peck! Well done Claudia.

6th Place, Erik with his lovely Hovawert, sorry no further details – Lost 12. Such a great partnership, crabbing in heelwork and a couple of sneezes causing loss of position being the main errors. Also and extra command given following the sneeze, which was sensible. Retrieve could do with a bit more consistency on the speed as he slowed markedly into the present and then needed an extra command to finish. Recall on the other hand was super, the only clear recall of the day. Finished off with a bit of a messy scent but managed to bring the correct cloth in. Sadly broke sit stay but well into the full time so still managed a place. Well done Erik, I think you have improved immensely since I last saw you.

So that was Saturdays Judging done. A great day – we were looked after superbly by our hosts with a constant supply of cold drinks, a lovely lunch and were also treated to a great bunch of friendly competitors. Thanks must go to Peter who conducted the stays brilliantly, as ever. 
So, time to relax with a lovely BBQ and several beers. What a lovely way to finish a day. Rob and I eventually retired to our caravan where we got ourselves sorted for bed. I was about to drop off when I was rudely awakened by something knocking, well thudding really? Rob had gone out for a final cigarette and was still outside. Amongst the thudding was this muffled hysterical laughter. ‘Whats happening Rob’ – more muffled laughter and something about a door? So I haul myself out of bed to find Rob standing outside the caravan with the top part of the caravan stable door in her hands!! Much hysterical laughter followed and assistance in rebuilding the caravan took place – we then went to bed!!
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