Young Master Frederic

Young Master Frederic
Young Master Frederic

Monday, 14 November 2011


I spent this weekend up at the fabulous Laverock Hall doing my KC judging seminars. And I'm very pleased to say I passed both! I'm looking forward to taking upy first judging appointment in the New Year.

Grade 4

Freddie and I have had three shows competing in Grade 4 now. Firstly the HnH Autumn Show. The panic set in and it showed! E's all day until a very scrappy jumping clear at the end of the day. Next was South Durham on a beautiful sunny October day. We had a couple of E's but then two clears, one jumping and one agility. Unfortunately too slow for a place.

That finished the summer season but it wasn't long before we found ourselves back at Richmond Equestrian Centre for the HnH Halloween show. Saturday - we got 3 clears out of 4 runs but STILL no place. I was starting to lose heart but then our one clear on the Sunday was good and fast, and we came 6th. We can do grade 4!

Halloween was also Darcey's first show. My little princess did great! She needs a bit more confidence but stayed with me and worked hard. A little star :-)

Sunday, 28 August 2011

A win and a bronze warrant

We were at Northern Week yesterday, a very small show compared to some for reasons I won't go into. As we arrived I got talking to a club mate who said it would be embarrassing to win out there. I disagreed, a win is still a win. You have the course to beat first, then you can worry about the competition and so what if the competition is 80 dogs rather than 150? Little did I know what was to come...

First up 1-3 graded jumping. I had Jasper in first, who did the beginning of the course beautifully including jumping a wall which new for him. But then he seemed to lose concentration and refused to weave at all. Then I took Freddie in for a bit of a hyper round, we had a pole down then he came out at the tenth weave and soared over the last jump.

I'd entered Freddie in 1-7 agility, and what a course, not in a good way! Lots of grumblings from pretty much everyone I spoke to. It was just a bit much - you had to send your dog round the back of a jump 5 times!!! I decided I'd use it to train Freddie's wait and appeared to achieve something...

So 1-3 agility came up. Jasper first again. He refused to weave again (must work on that) but did all his contacts with not a glimmer of hesitation. I was so pleased with him.

Then Freddie. He did a beautiful start line wait, followed by a brilliant clear round. Nice tight turns, a good weave entry, I couldn't have asked for more. The scorers seemed to take forever to do their job, but finally the list was ready. I started reading from the bottom and my heart sank, we weren't there, surely we had got a place? My eye carried on up the list and then... Oh My Goodness... 1st place!!! You could have scraped me off the floor. So after just seven weeks in grade 3, somewhere I thought we'd stay for a year at least, we are into grade 4. And it gives Freddie the last few points he needs for that coveted Bronze Warrant. There's no stopping my boy, what a little star! Well done my super gorgeous wonderful Young Master Frederic AW(B) xxx

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Hare n Hounds Summer Show

We've just finished a very wet, very muddy summer show.  I thought August weather was supposed to be good!!!  But the people and the dogs got on with the show with the usual good Northern humour and had a great time.

Freddie was running really well and had at least one clear round every day apart from one, and came home with some lovely rosies.  He collected a 20th place, 2 x 14th, 12th and 11th as well as two unplaced clears.  We are still frustratingly close to our Bronze warrant, just 11 more points to get.  And Jasper did some nice jumping in the anysize, we got E'd every time but he is getting better and better, watching more and getting faster too.

Freddie impressed me most with his 20th place.  It was a real speed agility course, very helter-skelter like and all on one side.  I never thought we would be in the places even with a clear round, but I really encouraged him on and we managed to go clear in just 30 seconds.  This was 5 seconds off the winner but I was so proud that we made the placings. 

On the same day we also had a lovely clear round in the grade 3 agility class.  It was more complicated than we are used to, and there weren't many dogs going clear, so I was very proud of our achievement.  And to top it off we came 11th.  A friend captured it all on camera (and a few ringparty to boot):

Our next outing is to Northern Agility Week, where Jasper has his first 'proper' runs.  Watch this space...

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

One year on...

Weardale Show on Saturday will be mine and Freddie's anniversary of competing, so I have been reflecting on our first year in agility.  By way of numbers, in the last year Freddie and I (and Jasper in the last couple of weeks) have achieved/experienced the following...

31 days competing at 18 shows
3 grades
140 runs
19 placings including 7 firsts
177 agility warrant points
22 clear rounds
77 eliminations
211.339 faults
9 trophies
27 rosettes

Not bad!

Here's Freddie with his haul for the year:

Jasper Doodle :-)

I know this is Freddie's blog, but it may well turn into Freddie and Jasper's.  My little (big) puppy is doing so well.  He has come on leaps and bounds in the last few weeks with his agility, growing in confidence and getting faster and braver with it.

He has had two 'anysize' runs now.  The first was at Otley Show, and my only aim was to keep him in the ring.  However, he surprised me by really concentrating and staying with me for a lovely first clear round.  No placing as he only trotted round so we were well down on time, but I was beaming with pride all the same.

We had more umph at Barnard Castle, but slightly too much perhaps.  Jasper took the first jump then headed straight for the tunnel, and an E.  However, I called him back and we did 2 to the end perfectly, and (new for Jasper), fast!  I wonder when we'll get it together for fast and clear - we are entered for more anysize runs at the Hare n Hounds summer show so fingers crossed for then.

Grade 3

Freddie and I started our grade 3 'career' at Otley show on 9/10 July.  I walked the first course chuntering about how hard it was, but realised my mistake of thinking it was g1-3 when actually it was g3-5 (Julie Buchanan's course).  Well... it was a challenge!  We were e'd on jump 5, and spent quite a while failing to persuade Freddie to take the tunnel under the A-frame.  Contact equipment trump tunnels every time for Fred.

But we did a bit better later on with the graded agility class.  A nice clear round, and an even better 10th place.  Maybe we can hold our own in G3.

Our jumping continued to be a bit rubbish though, picking up faults.

Our second grade 3 show was at Barnard Castle, and the biggest thing anyone will moan about there was the weather!  Rain, rain, rain and more rain.  I was going to a very nice indoor fun show on the Saturday, so only stayed at BC long enough for two jumping runs, both of which we got faults on.  One pole, and one refusal.  We went again on Sunday to get even wetter, and managed just one clear round all day which was a sppedy jumping course so no place for Fred, we were about 2 seconds out of the places. 

I've started to get a little demoralised but hopefully our next show we will do better.  Reality bites in G3!

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Waldridge Fell - first day in Grade 2

Saturday was the final day of the 'Northern Agility Festival', but hosted on this day by Waldridge Fell DTS rather than Hare n Hounds.

I was a wee bit nervous, silly really, but grade 2 felt different!  I had a good chat to Freddie in the queue for our first of 2 1-2 graded agility classes.  It went along the lines of "Freddie, do good and run clear, but don't win, I'm not sure we're ready for grade 3".  Well, Freddie only listened to the first bit.  Helen Nicholson's course was just right for him, and he pulled a stunning clear round out of the bag and WON!!  One run in grade 2 and grade 3 here we come...

No luck in our jumping classes again, but then in Doc's ring for the second of our agility classes Freddie did it again, another nice clear (although he only just got his A-frame contact).  12 superb weaves and skillful negotiation of the one or two traps in the course, and Freddie had his second win for the day.  Well and truely into grade 3!

Over the course of the week we managed 8 rosettes and 5 trophies.  Not bad at all!

Freddie also now has 143 points towards his bronze agility warrant.  Lets hope he tots up a few more at Stanhope before we start in grade 3 and it all gets a whole lot harder...

Northern Festival of Agility

Our 'home' for the last week has been a very windy Redcar, at the Hare n Hounds Northern Festival of Agility.  And what a week it has been!  Our last four days in Grade 1 before moving up to Grade 2 for Waldridge Fell.

First Saturday - after deciding he did know what all this agility business is about at Helmsley over Easter, Freddie settled into some great running again.  He managed three clear rounds out of five runs and only one E, our best performance yet.  He didn't get placed in the 1-2 combined jumping as he took just too long through the weaves, not missing any but pausing to gaze at the people outside the ring in between ever other pole.  But he did pick up two fabulous places, a 3rd and a 4th, both in his graded agility classes.

We were back for more runs on Monday, and had another good day.  Our first run was 1-3 graded agility.  Freddie picked up 5 faults for a refusal after just nudging his nose past a jump, but that was enough for second place.  Our jumping rounds were more scrappy and we ended up with Es, in one because Freddie got spooked by someone watching from the stand!  But we finished the day with a wonderful clear round in 1-2 graded agility, and another 1st place.

A couple of days at work, then we were back for the final Friday.  We didn't manage any clear rounds that day, but doe to the small classes and less than simple course Freddie finished his grade 1 career with another agility win.  And what a beautiful rosette and cup, I know Chris was very proud of the blue and gold combination!

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

HnH Easter - First camping and first win!

We spent Easter at the beautiful Duncombe Park in Helmsley, the location for the Hare n Hounds Easter Show. 

What a fabulous venue, simply stunning surroundings, Helmsley village had all you could wish for, and the brilliant atmosphere that Chris creates at all the HnH shows.

It was our first trip out in the caravan and thankfully we all enjoyed it.  The only modification we do need to make is to our fencing, after it became apparent that Jasper can jump much higher than he lets on at agility practice, and can clear the fence to follow me or play with another dog any time he likes!

And of course the agility...

Freddie's first run was a bit of a joke, a run that only a doodle could come up with.  He managed one jump correctly before crossing to do the tunnel, then running past me to jump up at the (thankfully lovely) judge.  He knocked her rosette off, picked it up and ran off with it.  Embarrassed isn't the word!  But she was very nice, and let me get control of Fred and bring him back in to do a few jumps.

It could only get better after that, and thankfully it did.  We got an unplaced clear round to finish off Friday, managed a 7th place on Saturday, a 3rd place on Sunday then a 5th place and a brilliant 1st place on Monday.  All in agility too, so Young Master Frederic won out and hits the heady heights of Grade 2!

Our next show is Northern Agility Week, Freddie will be in Grade 1 for the HnH days, then grade 2 for the Waldridge Fell day on the last Saturday.

Wednesday, 9 March 2011

2011 Season starts...

A long post to provide an update on our start to the 2011 season.

Our first show this year was the Hare n Hounds valentine show, indoor at the Richmond Equestrian Centre.  For the first show of the season we did ok, Freddie was jumping really well and would have done better with a better handler!

On the Saturday we clocked up a few Es, which were all my fault.  Most of them were very good runs spoilt by me making silly mistakes and getting us E'd.  But we did manage a lovely clear in the Redmills-sponsored 1-7 combined jumping, but were a long way out of the placings.

Sunday was a bit better, still making silly mistakes but we managed to come 6th in grade 1 agility even with 5 faults for a refusal at the weaves.  And in our final run we had a superb clear in ABC jumping which was complimented by the judge, but was just out of the placings.  Damn those fast kelpies!!!  So we came home with 3 rosettes to add to the board which felt really good.

And at the beginning of March we had another weekend's competing.  First at the Doghouse in Seaham - a great indoor venue.  This was a fun show, being judged by Doc Docherty.  Though we did a bit rubbish, not managing a clear round all day!  It was good fun, and good training.
Sunday was the Hare n Hounds Mad March Show.  Again we had some very scrappy runs, but also some good runs with minor mistakes that picked up faults.  Our first run of the day had 5 faults which would have been good enough for a place, but unfortunately the scribe forgot to write our time down, we re-ran and got eliminated.  Very frustrating, but it could easily have gone the other way.  So no rosettes to add to the board this time.

But I did manage to get OH to come to the fun day and take some video footage.  Here's Freddie in action (we got 5 faults for a refusal and the weaves are very scrappy, but otherwise a nice run).