Posted on 07/20/09 22 Comments

I don’t have a lot of time today, tons to do before Tuesday, but I had to post this run from the weekend. Canada Cup was again fantastic.  My dogs were amazing, as a handler, I let them down in the early rounds but we pulled it together when it counted and won 3 of the 4 finals with (Feature won both 26″ Standard & Jumpers, Encore won Jumpers and was 2nd in Standard). I cued Encore way late for a turn in the finals so we lost almost a full second as Encore fell on her butt, but we still managed to come in 2nd.

Anyway, I will try and get course maps to post because, overall it was the best weekend of courses I have ever had the pleasure of running. The judges (Clara Theiss, Adrian Royakkers and Roger-Peirre Cote) set the bar incredibly high. Going to any other trial to run any other courses can’t help but be a let down after this weekend.

So back to this run. This is the finals of the Jumpers Classic at the Canada Cup. There were very few clean runs here (and they didn’t even call refusals, using Starters rules to encourage speed). In this jumpers run Encore demonstrates everything good that comes out of our training. From Susan Salo’s jump work, watch how she collects to turn so tightly yet manages to extend to bounce two jumps that no other dogs at the trial did (Feature bounced one of the but not both).  This is also a tribute to Greg Derrett’s handling system as I did not speak one word to her after the release from the start line. The dog understood all she needed to know based on my body positions and the cues it gave her.

When I  the course maps where handed out before the run I looked at it and thought, “wow, I have never seen a jumpers course without a tunnel before, how will that affect this dyslexic handler with only jumps as landmarks?” While running the course (it was the last one of the day) I thought, “man she must be tired because I am so far out in front, this can’t be a very fast run”. Once I watch this run on video I was speechless.

I hope this doesn’t come off as boastful, but I have had some great runs over the years but this one will be in my memory bank as my best so far.  Enjoy!

Encore & Susan winning the Jumpers Final

Today I am grateful for the amazing courses we got to run this weekend, thank you once again to all the judges and to Susan and Adrian for putting on the event.


  1. Helen Verte says:
    Thursday, July 23, 2009 at 9:56pm

    Thank you so much for sharing that gorgeous run. It encompasses a serpentine, which was featured in Clean Run in July, and my dogs and I had a group lesson on that article last Monday. Today, I was still trying to get it right, and still so frustrated. So many questions I had about where the arms go and how the dog knows whether to take the jump from this side or that side. The still pictures in the article were good, but not enough for me to process the answers I needed. And so I sat down at your blog, and boink! There you and Encore are in beautiful, living color and moreso – in motion – answering every question I had on a serpentine. A picture’s worth a thousand words, but motion is priceless. I’m going to forward this blog entry to my classmates and teacher as it is a phenomenal run and a perfect example of what we’re learning in class and more so, as seen happening at a “real” agility trial. What can be better than that? Thank you, Susan. You made my week, and a big congratulations to you and Encore on your superb run.


  2. Bobbie Bhambree says:
    Wednesday, July 22, 2009 at 8:18pm

    Freakin, f__in’ awesome! I happened to be listening to Moby while watching your runs in slo-mo and it was quite fitting! The control and smoothness of your body language cues was really educational to watch. And the confidence in, “you’re just going to get there.” I was impressed with your FC at one point when Encore bounced between two jumps. I guess you would have to know your dog to know she’s committing further back then expected.


  3. jane says:
    Wednesday, July 22, 2009 at 9:33am

    Susan:I apologize for not congratulating you on your win with Feature. I did not see your run at the trial so thank you for posting. Beautiful
    Jane and JT


  4. Melanie B. says:
    Tuesday, July 21, 2009 at 10:36am

    Very lovely run for both of you…Encore looks fantastic and I love seeing her run since I’ve got a close relative to her of my own. I can easily picture my girl running like that someday, and hope that it comes to pass.


  5. Sharon Normandin says:
    Tuesday, July 21, 2009 at 10:18am

    Wow! Now I have a picture in my mind to visualize when Tracy tells us in class to “imagine Flo Jo and her perfect dog Fluffy”.

    It’s not just the superb timing that impresses me, but the absolute trust you have in Cory reading her line and completing her task that enables you to get so far ahead of her and into position.


  6. Lori Michewicz says:
    Tuesday, July 21, 2009 at 8:41am



  7. Fiona Ferrar says:
    Tuesday, July 21, 2009 at 3:31am

    I think it’s great when anyone brags about it run – not because they beat someone else but because it was the best run that they and dog could do. That is a truly great run – loved the push through to that last jump in the serp line, had to watch it twice to realise which side Encore had jumped from because it was so smooth.


  8. Mary M says:
    Monday, July 20, 2009 at 9:39pm

    Very Nice! I had fun watching your handeling (pausing to see the timing) – having some difficulty with this right now in my runs….so this was great to watch!!! Very good job to you and Encore both 🙂


  9. Jodi Altman says:
    Monday, July 20, 2009 at 9:22pm

    I was at Canada Cup and saw the run. Nobody handled the course like Susan did with Encore (and Feature, who also had a brilliant run). Most people used a LOP but Susan chose to run and use a decel cue which Encore responded to with the tight turns of a pole dancer which she’s famous for. Susan looked like she was humming a tune while Cory raced like she was writing the finals for the Success with One Jump DVD. In the hushed atmosphere of the venue, I thought to myself, “Oh, THAT is what perfection looks like”.


  10. Chris says:
    Monday, July 20, 2009 at 5:47pm

    And one more thing I love. I’ve been working through the Success with One Jump DVD with my dog, and watching that run, I can see every one of those exercises in context, and how they all flow together once the dog understands how to read your body. Very inspiring.


  11. Claire Duder says:
    Monday, July 20, 2009 at 5:36pm


    It wasn’t until I watched the video the second time that I realised there was a threadle, that’s how smooth it was.


  12. Carol Pena says:
    Monday, July 20, 2009 at 5:09pm

    OMG – What an awsome run. This one gives me GOOSEBUMPS. I’m so taken with the silence of the run and how together are you and Encore.


  13. Chris says:
    Monday, July 20, 2009 at 4:33pm

    Thanks for posting the video. What a fantastic run to watch – it looks like it must have been a blast to run.

    Makes me want to get up from my desk, go straight home, and play with my dog!


  14. Barb says:
    Monday, July 20, 2009 at 2:40pm

    Great run! You have sparked my interest in this Competition. Maybe I will be able to make the trip next year. I look forward to the course maps. Id love to give it a try.


  15. Christine says:
    Monday, July 20, 2009 at 12:52pm

    Oh wow Susan. This is one to keep at the forefront of my mind to visualize teamwork, understanding, and flawless execution.
    My husband just watched it too – I can’t quite repeat the colourful words he used to express his awe 😉 Impressive!!!


  16. Andrea says:
    Monday, July 20, 2009 at 12:09pm

    Woohoo!!!! Way to go girls!!!! You guys totally rocked it – next year I am definitely marking it on my calendar to come out and watch.


  17. Mary Lou says:
    Monday, July 20, 2009 at 10:16am

    Poetry in motion. Your use of excel/decel was brilliant. Great job!


  18. Nat says:
    Monday, July 20, 2009 at 10:04am

    I just watched your run on YT before reading this post, and wow, that was an amazing run! I let my dog down as a handler all the time…poor girl tries so hard though!



  19. Kysha says:
    Monday, July 20, 2009 at 9:21am

    Lovely run!! Encore never had a question throughout the course. What a wonderful feeling when it all comes together like that!


  20. Sarah S says:
    Monday, July 20, 2009 at 9:20am

    Thanks for the eye candy!!! More inspiration for foundation, foundation, foundation…

    Boast all you want– with a performance like that you have earned some bragging rights 😉

    Congratulations and enjoy the high!


  21. Jan V says:
    Monday, July 20, 2009 at 8:12am

    Spectacular teamwork on your speed to position/decel. That is my greatest struggle.. timing is everything! Congratulations.


  22. denise says:
    Monday, July 20, 2009 at 8:06am

    Great run! I learn so much watching clips of you running your dogs. It’s one thing to read the theory on a handling system but it’s so much more helpful to actually see you running your dog and seeing how the handling alters the dogs path. Thanks.


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