One of the cool things about running historical courses is the ability to compare runs. You could compare your dog now to your dog when he previously ran a course. You could compare the top dogs from the previous run to the current one. You could also compare your run to the Top Dog. The list of options continues.
So, let’s look at a couple of runs. We will compare Gracie and Peak. Gracie was our first-place dog, and Peak was the second-place dog. I did not talk about the handlers in the video, but that also has some impact on the run time.
I suggest you watch the video first and then come back and use an app or program that will allow you to scroll forward and backward while you read through this. I created this with Coach’s Eye. There are other apps that do the same thing. I have not used Coach’s Eye very much, so I am still learning it.
Look at the lead out positions of each handler. Does one have an advantage over the other?
The next handling difference is at 9-10. Gary elects to perform a Blind Cross (BC) while Christina does a Rear Cross (RC). Look at where each handler is when the dog comes out of the tunnel. Gary is almost past 8. Christina appears to be behind 8 and is between the jump and A-frame. Because Gary left his dog at the tunnel, he is able to get downstream to make the blind. Christina appears to have planned an RC, so she hangs back a little. How did you plan to make the cross?
Gary keeps his position ahead of Gracie by sending to 10-11 and stays ahead into the tunnel. Christina puts in a sprint and leaves Peak in the #12 tunnel. She then races Peak to 15. Gary also sprints the line. At 16, Gary shows strong deceleration and goes low to cue a tight wrap. Christina does not get low, but it looks like she adds the off hand as she decelerates and turns in to the dog’s line to cue the turn.
Both handlers leave their dogs in the tunnel (17) and race down the line. Gary does a BC between 18-19, and Christina does a Front Cross (FC). Do you need to cross? What advantage does crossing give you? How did you handle this section?
If you like this post, give a comment below. I also take all constructive criticism. Feel free to share your handling strategy.