Going to a store and "trying" (whatever that means) the display model does not = "experience with the crate."
People who do events/sports/activities with their dogs usually have experience and information to offer on equipment. I know that I have been offered many good tips on useful items as well as warned off ones that aren't really worth the expenditure.
OP - this brand/model gets pretty good reviews, is a good size for a GSD, and isn't as ridiculously expensive as the one I bought :/
Last year I was lugging my Midwest folding metal crates (suitcase style) to events because I only had the one soft side, it is too small for Huxley, and Abby was having a hard time with the heat. Getting those metal crates stowed in the Tahoe along with travel crates, EZ up, luggage, and 3 people? Not fun. I don't like playing tetris with heavy items!
I like the fact that the mesh sits a little lower on the model above. I could set crate fans on the ground on several sides and hopefully keep Abby cool. It would free up space in my Tahoe and be so much easier to carry in to sites. I may just go this route this year