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Old 09-11-2012, 02:17 AM   #21 (permalink)
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I don't know if it's a regional thing or a NAFA vs U-FLI thing, but I've never seen mattresses at a flyball tournament. In fact, when you and Falon were talking about them I had the hardest time even picturing how you might use a mattress to catch a dog! It made a lot more sense when I found out it was a crib mattress, and I saw a video of one being used.
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Old 09-11-2012, 09:04 AM   #22 (permalink)
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I wonder if it's an indoor/outdoor thing too? I've never seen an outdoor tournament. The indoor ones often have limited space. At our last one I was literally out the door into the parking lot with Nikon coming back, and when I was releasing Pan (54') my back was basically on a wall. We never even bring a mattress to tournaments, there are so many there you just grab the closest one. Sometimes other people watching will see a dog that needs one and jump in for you.
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Old 09-11-2012, 10:02 AM   #23 (permalink)
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I've been to two indoor and two outdoor tournaments so far. All have been NAFA, but this weekend we'll be at my first U-FLI tournament. It will also be my first on mats, the other indoor tournaments have all been on soccer fields with artificial turf. I'll let you know if I see any mattresses!

We often don't have enough extra people to help catch dogs even if we wanted to. If there's more than the minimum of 5, we'll have a scribe (who is often the box helper too), a pass caller, and/or a ball shagger.
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Old 09-11-2012, 02:07 PM   #24 (permalink)
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We have a really small team too (at least compared to the others in the area) but it seems that the same teams are always at the tournaments so we end up with other people loading, holding the mattress, etc. One thing I've loved about flyball so far, everyone's been really nice and not just good sportsmanship but actually helping out. We've had a few instances of putting other teams' pick-up dogs on our team or vice versa. One time Nikon's singles opponent was a no-show and another team brought a dog out to run so he had an opponent (he always does better in a real race, with competition). We even have members that run dogs on multiple teams and/or train with other teams (we have two members that run some dogs on our team and some dogs on another team and we have one member that doesn't live near us so she trains with a different team but runs all her dogs on our team in tournaments). Most of the times we have someone calling passes it's a guy I know from another team. One of the hardest things for us has been that everyone has multiple dogs so even if we're running 2-3 different teams in a tournament it's not 2-3 times the amount of people. At practice we can rarely run the combinations we want because there's rarely a person to box load who doesn't have a dog that should be part of that combination. Lately we've had newbies loading the box but that has presented other issues (for example at Pan's last practice he was supposed to work on tighter passes but the newbie never had his ball loaded in time).
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Old 09-11-2012, 06:18 PM   #25 (permalink)
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Our club isn't that small, we actually have around a dozen active members, but some only occasionally come to practice and only do the nearby tournaments, not the ones that involve overnight stays out of town. We're easily twice the size of the other club in the area that was interested in me and Halo. Well, in terms of people anyway, I think they have 1/3 or 1/4 as many dogs as we do!

But we do have the same problem you mentioned - a lot more dogs than people. We have around two dozen dogs racing, with some young dogs still in training and a couple of puppies who are way too young to race. At one point I think we had 7 green dogs, although several of them, including Halo, are now racing. One woman with 5 dogs retired 2 of them this year, so she's down to 3 dogs racing, but our co-captain has 8 dogs, and I think only 2 are not racing yet. She actually lives in Carson City, Nevada, so she usually practices with another club. She only comes to our practices occasionally, but always races with us. She has all our height dogs.

For this tournament 5 people are going both days, 4 club members and Mollie's roommate, who does not own a dog. Carrie is going to be running someone else's dog, and although she's helped Mollie with classes before, she's never done anything at a tournament so she's a little nervous. Fortunately, the dog she's running is very experienced, and she's been practicing the past couple of weeks so she should do okay. I doubt they'll have her boxload though.

We have one additional person who will be there Saturday only and one who will be there Sunday only, so we will have a total of 6 people. With that many I'm guessing we'll run 3 teams - we usually have either 3 or 4. I won't know what team Halo is running on or how many races she'll have until I we show up, and then everyone gets a very detailed schedule complete with our tasks for when we're not racing a dog, which I appreciate.

Most of the time we're the ones helping other clubs - there's a club in Southern California that had only 3 people at the Truckee tournament (I box loaded for them a LOT!), and 4 people at last months tournament. They always run 2 teams, and not only do we boxload for them, we're often running a dog too. They will step in and help out if we need it though, and sometimes people from other clubs will shag balls if they see you don't have anyone to do it, or help carrying the box in and out of the ring. If we're short a scribe or pass caller we usually just do without.
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Old 09-12-2012, 09:39 AM   #26 (permalink)
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I'm running a friend's dog in a couple of weeks that finishes into a mattress
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Old 09-12-2012, 01:24 PM   #27 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Liesje View Post
Normally I am running, SPRINTING really, dragging the toy and when he catches the ball on the end I sort of pull back and do some fancy footwork in a curve, probably very similar to a longbite.
Now there's an idea! Cross train - get a helper with a sleeve at the end
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Old 09-12-2012, 01:59 PM   #28 (permalink)
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We did that once
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Old 09-19-2012, 09:51 PM   #29 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Liesje View Post
I wonder if it's an indoor/outdoor thing too? I've never seen an outdoor tournament. The indoor ones often have limited space. At our last one I was literally out the door into the parking lot with Nikon coming back, and when I was releasing Pan (54') my back was basically on a wall.
That is a very short runback! I noticed that the U-Fli website doesn't mention the minimum runback at each tournament like NAFA does. The indoor soccer field where our club and another local club hosts tournaments has a minimum runback of 65 feet, and there are some with runbacks as long as 100 feet listed. I'm not sure what it was last weekend.
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Old 09-19-2012, 10:00 PM   #30 (permalink)
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Halo ran on Loose Dogs on Saturday, who won first place in their division (Standard 4) with a best time of 19.136: Bling it On! Team Report 9/15/12

She ran on Stray Dogs on Sunday, who won 1st place in Variety with a best time of 18.796: Bling it On! Team Report 9/16/12

She now has 1240 U-Fli points, and got four titles - Top Flight, and TF Level I, II, and III! Dog History Halo von Rokanhaus

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