What a fantastic experience going to Olympia is! The glitz, the glamour, the noise, the electric atmosphere! The first year I went there, I remember sneaking down to the arena early in the morning, and being aghast at how big the arena is (when compared to normal agility ring sizes). Oh and how absorbant the flooring is, I remember feeling like I was running through treacle and not being able to get where I wanted to be! It was a long and tiring but very enjoyable day, thanks very much to Karen for being a fantastic helping hand. Unfortunately (like very many others) Kaydee and I had the first pole down in the morning semi final, so it was all over for us rather quickly! I don't really want to dwell on any negatives as the event is very well organised by the dog agility team, especially considering the extremely pressurised conditions, however it is virtually impossible to get 36 dogs properly warmed up in a short area of busy corridor with horses and tractors needing to constantly pass through. Some dogs cope better than others with minimal warm-ups, but it might have saved a lot of first poles being knocked if dogs were allowed to use the practise arena. Dogs such as mine with her chronic muscle problems would definately benefit from a bit of running around and ideally a practise jump - well the horses get one! With dog agility firmly established now as a major attraction at Olympia, isn't it time the dogs were allowed 10 mins in the warm up arena? Despite loosing some top dogs (in all the height categories) through hitting the first pole, there was some really awesome agility to be seen. There are some videos being put up on YouTube, here are some of Saturdays semi final runs: http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=5nvSkdAsghI
Huge congratulations to all the finalists and winners.
9 hours ago