Song and Levi did me proud this weekend. Both qualified for the double lift finals at the NEBCA Fall Foliage championship trial. Both dogs trusted me and went on their first gather in the direction I asked, which took them to a different part of the field than they expected sheep. Both turned back beautifully even though the lay of the field required them to turn back and commit to their line for sometime before they would see the sheep. Fortunately the second gather was near where the sheep had been placed for the qualifying rounds so that helped. Song turned beautifully on a single command like she's been doing this all her life. Levi turned well on a single command at first. As he turned the person tasked with keeping the first group from crossing the swamp moved her dog into position. Levi caught that movement and turned back to the first group to see. I stopped him and gave him a second lookback and he turned and ran a superb second gather.
I could not get a hole to split with Levi. I was getting frustrated and Levi was getting hot and confused. Finally I just called him through the packet of 8 sheep, no hole whatsoever. He came through cleanly but 5 and 3 as opposed to the 4/4 we needed. So Levi did not get a shed, thus no pen. He was 5th overall. I got a nice shed with Song. Not such a good pen. Where are my friends with the tranquilizer dart gun when I need it at the pen? We got it done though and she was 4th.
Fina was a good girl, and would have made the cut if my other dogs had not. Dare spent the weekend tethered in the van as there were lots of specators and folks around and we were keeping all the cash in a drawer in my van. Dare is friendly as can be with me there, but won't let folks in if I'm not. His job was to watch the cash.
I'm very pleased with my pack.