Grand Slam at his first AAC Nationals in Edmonton!
What a great time at Nationals I had 🙂 I wasn’t sure how the event was going to go for me since I got home from Europe & then 24 hours later I flew to Edmonton! I had to deal with jet lag (Still dealing actually) but a few naps in Slam’s tent crate seemed to help me stay awake while I was there.
I was asked many times at Nationals why I was only running one dog! haha, Believe me, it was strange – but it really think it was a great choice. I normally run Slyce & Funkee in all events I go to, but I left both girls at home so i could just focus on Grand Slam. Slyce has had a big year! She went to WAO in May (At 11 years old) and won a gold medal 🙂 I have made the decision to retire her from the world stage. The 2013 AAC nationals gave us the opportunity to “fight” for a spot on the IFCS team (Going to Netherlands in 2014). Wasn’t going to bother with that for Slyce – she deserves a break. Miss Funkee Monkee has traveled all over the world this year – competing in both WAO & EO. I also am not interested in doing IFCS with her since I would rather do WAO & EO again. I knew I would be a little brain fried at the Nationals, so running just one dog seemed like the appropriate plan. And it was.
Before I talk about the competition, I must speak of the banquet. I will admit, I don’t normally attend the banquet but we decided to go this year. I will say it was the best one I’ve ever been too. The food was yummy & the entertainment was amazing. There was a hula hoop girl that rocked the stage followed by a hypnotist show……… You are totally going to guess what I’m about to say next aren’t you…… YEP – I got hypnotized! My dad filmed the whole show & I was shocked when I watched it back. It was one of the funniest things I’ve ever seen – and I think most things are funny. My friend Kris Kubota was hypnotized as well & she had the crowd laughing too. What a fun night!
On this trip, Grand Slam & I really got to spend some awesome time together! I was so happy with how he ran. This was only his 4th trial, as he just turned 2 years old. I laughed when I got out of the ring with him because he’s so inexperienced that he didn’t even know to get his leash out of the bucket at the end gate! Something I take for granted with my other dogs I suppose! By the last day of the competition – he was picking up on this idea.
When I look back on the weekend, our mistakes were pretty minor overall. There was one error that I MADE in Standard 1 that prevented us from making top 10 & also getting a working spot on the IFCS team 🙁 Boo ME!!!!
We have so much work to do together, but I feel like we are off to a great start. My runs went as follows:
Jumpers 1 – little hairy, but ended up with only 1 refusal.
Gamblers 1 – beautiful run – 3rd place overall
Standard 1 – off course thanks to bad handler!!!!! We had a great run going & only had 4 obstacles left. Frame, sharp turn over a jump & then the home run stretch! As he was coming over the apex of the frame & started to cue his collection on the next jump with my “Dig Dig Dig” command. I should never have said it on the frame because with a blink of an eye, he flipped off the frame in to the tunnel beneath it. Dig Dig Dig sounds an awful lot like “Right Right Right!” Stupid Mama! Good Dog.
Jumpers 2 – 1 bar only
Gamblers 2 – Apparently doing back up tricks & left/right directionals take up extra time in the main gamble….. haha. Slam was a little confused about running out to take jump #2 of the main gamble. So I used my back up command “beep beep beep” to back him away from taking the jump #1 backward. He backed all the way up the proper jump, I finally got him over it to finish the gamble, but the buzzer blew before we were done! BUMMER! hahah But was quite hilarious. The look on Slams face was priceless.
Standard 2 – CLEAN!!!!!! What a way to end the weekend. He smoked the course & won 2nd place with 0.2 seconds out of 1st place.
We ended up 21st over all out of 86, 22″ Regular Dogs. The most exciting part for me though – we earned enough points to be an alternate for the IFCS World Team!!!!! Wahoo!
Although this is the first time I haven’t placed in the top 10 with my dogs, I feel so energized after this event. I’m so excited to continue training this dog!!! He has such a bright future & I can’t wait to start focusing on him more.
Besides the dog part of the trip – I also got to visit with my Grandfather who lives in Calgary & also my little Sister who lives in Jasper. Lexi moved out to Jasper over a year ago to work at Jasper Park Lodge. She & I are very close & I miss her soooooo much. I was so happy to see her. She is just the best! She was able to come to Nationals on Sat & Sun to see my father & I compete. She had never seen Grand Slam run & also was able to cheer on my Dad who made Steeplechase finals with Hero.
Overall, it was such an enjoyable trip. Thanks to my Mom, Dad & Kris Kubota for all the company. We always have so many laughs.
Really looking forward to going out EAST for next years Nationals! 🙂