Thursday, September 8, 2016

Nationals Run Up - Ro Does a Practice Track

It was a fine day for a practice track.  One of our very generous farmers, Frank, offered up our choice of his big fields to use, and I got to lay my very first TDX track, with Shelly's help, of course.  We laid the track, dropped the three articles, set the flags, then I got to walk it all over again before Team Shelwyn hit it.
It was AMAZING.  Ro had no idea where the track was, wasn't cuing off the flags, and found all the articles with absolute perfection.
We are off tomorrow, the 9th, to Gervais (about an hour plus north) for the official 2016 ASCA Nationals Tracking Test.
I think they'll do just fine!
 Ro gets into harness
 At the start.  First article is here
 Track runs out 57 yards fairly straight.  Ro doesn't necessarily follow the track precisely.  The scent will drift, as it was fairly humid and there was a breeze that kept changing directions, making it quite a challenge.  Shelly doesn't give him any direction, just encourages him to keep working when he's hit a snag
 There's the flag for the first turn, to the left.  He will cast around the flag to find the direction change
 Direction change found!  Off we go again
 Shelly's still on the first leg, and Ro is pulling hard to let her know he's got the direction change
 You can see my track ever so faintly to Ro's right.  He's tracking the drift scent, working right alongside it
 He's on track nicely here, intermediate article right in front of him.  He knows it too
 Intermediate article found!
 From the article, straight ahead to the next turn, at the blue flag
 Made the turn at the flag, cast for the track, found it, tracking strong to the next turn
 Casting for the new direction
 Got it.  Now on the very long leg
 Again, you can faintly see my track to the next blue flag just off his right shoulder

 Coming back onto the track
 Dead on track.  Remember, Shelly's not directing him in any way.  He's doing this all with his nose
 Hit the flag for the last leg to the last article
 Made the turn, found the track, and the final article is dead ahead
 He's got it!!

Job well and truly done!!

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