Okay, our first trial is behind us.
In short, we came, saw and ehm, well crashed.
Not as bad as in my worst fears, but we didn´t clear the course. Conditions on the field were pretty rough, heavy wind against the direction of the fetch (at least one wasn´t shouting/whistling in the wind).
Her outrun was okay, wide enough, no crossing over and she positioned herself good behind the sheep. But we immediately got in trouble.
The field is by the seaside and it has a row of minor dunes during the lift the sheep drifted to the side and disappeared from my view behind one of them....They did not reappear. This were some pretty desperate moment for me especially knowing Gláma is not strong in this department.
My wife told me afterwards she had lifted them and then went in her default problem, immediately heading them causing confusion in the sheep. I can manage this more or less when I am quick enough, and see what is going on.
Well chaos followed with Gláma circling the sheep at the top, but miraculously (who knows, maybe my blind random commands even did something...) she fetched them, and came down the course with them more or less in my general direction (do I need to say the sheep missed the fetch gate?), by now the sheep are pretty frustrated, one can hardly blame them.
Gláma does gain some confidence in my presence, and I can steer them acceptably around the post , sadly just missing the second gate and turn them into to cross drive, also into the wind. The sheep are not happy, and by now are thoroughly fed up with my dog that does not command a whole lot of respect (this is an understatement).
Before we reach the last gate things come to a grinding hold. The sheep decide they have had enough and stop moving. I try everything, half flanks to and fro hoping to pry them loose. I call my dog back ten, twenty meters, then flanking her around again, nothing works. Knowing I must have timed out anyway I walked to Gláma and led her and the sheep of the field. Pity we didn´t get a chance to try and pen, but I do realize that it had been hopeless anyway.
The funny part (and also slightly embarrassing I can tell you) that all tough we ran pretty lousy , no doubt worst of all the dogs on the field, we brought home the third price of the B group complete with an actual shiny trophy . Of course the simple reason being that there were only three dogs running in that group. My kids (eight and six) were at least very pleased about that!
I must say, I did have a lot of fun. It was great to see the other dogs run. The quality of dogs was pretty good, a lot better than when I was a spectator at this trial a couple of years age (then a lot of dogs wrecked even worse than I did today).
It also leaves me with some contemplation about Gláma, and her weak points (which are imo revolving around a general lack of self confidence).
I am happy that your dog turned out stronger away from home rather than weaker Maja, but it certainly doesn´t work that way for us (and I think your dog is rather the exception).
A friend of mine who was assisting at this trial has her halfsister (older dog, same sire) and told me his dog has similar issues, he had not succeeded in training them out (for what its worth).
Well, now I go mix a drink: to toast the third price I won on my very first trial