SUMMARY: The wind blew blew blew all weekend. That must explain the dropped bars.
The Dixon site is known for its winds. They have had a trial or two over time where they had to strap the jump bars to the jumps to keep them from blowing off repeatedly, and relying on the judge for whether they SHOULD have fallen. Not quite that bad this time, but most of the jumps had to be staked, we used huge rocks to hold down everything on the score table (dang, why didn't I think to take a picture of that? It's the wind drying out my brain...), and my skin and respiratory system are so dessicated that they'd make the long-term inhabitants of the Valley of the Kings look thoroughly moisturized.
Qs, though, were in short supply.
Boost finally got her only Q of the weekend out of 10 tries, in the last run of the weekend, pairs relay. She knocked a bar (which is OK as long as your time plus faults stays below the required number), but she and her teammate had the second-fastest time of all 26 masters open pairs. That's very promising. And she did have a bit of a hesitation before one jump--not enough for a refusal but fractions of seconds matter--and I did hold her a bit on the Aframe because she's been leaving early. So the speed really is very promising when she actually runs instead of looking back at me to see what I'm doing and thence going around jumps or earning refusals.
And that finished her Relay title, which is her first Masters-level title. Happy!
Tika earned Qs in Gamblers both days, 5th place out of 17 both times (dang, just out of placement-ribbon range!), and also in pairs, and--funny thing for a dog who has earned most of her 25 Grand Prix Qs with 5 faults--she was one of only two 26" dogs who ran clean in the Grand Prix today, taking 2nd, which I think is the best we've ever done. So I guess it *is* possible that everyone else in the known universe could crap out at Nationals and we'd be left standing.
Except that the rest of her runs had issues, so the opposite seems more likely.
(Boost also did the gambles beautifully both days, but knocked a bar in each. Dang bars!)
Maybe more tomorrow. Mostly I had fun, mostly the dogs ran well, and very mostly indeed I'm glad to be home and out of that wind!