Thanks everyone for your tips.
I have glanced over that article, and I see where it is going (I will read it thoroughly tonight) and I do understand there is a lot of work involved. The fact that Protection work is not something I have a strong desire to do with him (and maybe he doesn't even have the desire), I am trying to figure out if I should even bother with Sch versus doing AKC Tracking. However, the more I read the differences between Sch Tracking and AKC Tracking, I think AKC is something I am more interested in. Obedience training never stops, so regardless of what job he gets, he will be doing Obedience training. CGC is our first goal in the next 2-3 months (puppy CGC actually, since he is under a year).
I found a club last night, Jefferson County Search Dog Association, and have contacted them for some information. They are more of a volunteer SAR group, with weekly training. I am still going to have Thor evaluated by the Sch trainer I found, since they also do training from beginner and advanced OB (CD, CDX, UD, OTCh) to Protection, to Schutzhund. They also do AKC Competition training (Conformation, OB, Tracking, and Field Trials) so I think that regardless of what we choose, this training facility will be a great place to start.
As far as the off leash in a field...we are also working with Thor on OB. His recall is pretty good, and we are getting better with distractions. In the front yard on a 35 foot rope, he no longer chases cars, other animals, etc...but they still get his attention (we live in a rural subdivision). Off leash obedience is definitely a want, and is right up there with Tracking/Trailing.
Thanks again for the advice. I am definitely going to read that article better about Sch/IPO, and going to find a copy of "Tracking: From the beginning" and see what I can do to get started. That evaluation is definitely going to happen too.
For what it's worth, here is the training facility I am talking about
ARTC Goshen Kentucky dog boarding grooming daycare training East Louisville,Lagrange,Prospect,Buckner,Springhurst,C restwood,Norton Commons,Kentucky
The owner is based our of Frankfort, KY but they have a facility in Goshen, KY (just north of Louisville). Ever heard of them or see anything you don't like from their website?