a Taj MuttHall Dog Diary: Grand Prix vs Standard

Monday, October 22, 2007

Grand Prix vs Standard

SUMMARY: What's the difference?

OK, you agility geniuses. Grand Prix is basically just a Masters Standard course without the table, right?

So why on earth does Tika run clean in Masters Standard more than 20% of the time, but only 10% of the time in Grand Prix?

(As a side note, 45% of her Grand Prixs are 5-point-fault runs, but only 20% of her Standard runs--which brings up the question of why she gets 0 or 5 faults in 55% of her Grand Prixs but only in 40% of her standard? Only 6% are table-related, near as I can tell, so that doesn't make up the difference.)


  1. OK, I'll bite.

    You feel more pressure in the Grand Prix run and so you tighten up on her and cause a refusal or a bar to come down. In Standard, there's not as much excitement--it's just another standard run--and you also have one more control point on course (the table) where you can stop and re-group.

  2. Well, that's possible, I suppose, although around here it's a rare weekend when we *don't* have a Grand Prix. But maybe I've conditioned myself to expect a fault and so I'm overhandling, as you say. I suspect that, whatever it is, it's not going to show up in a video. Sigh.


  3. How big of a sample size are we talking about? And are standard courses typically easier than Grand Prix courses?

  4. More than one person has suggested that the issue with the grand prix is because I'm more stressed about the grand prix. That's certainly possible, especially now that I have it in my mind that we "always" fault on the course.

    I have always thought that Grand Prix runs were easier than Master Standard runs, but I'm not quite sure how to quantify that impression.

    In pure numbers, we're talking 16 Standard Qs out of 75 attempts, 16 Standard runs with 5 faults. In Grand Prix, she's Qed 22 out of 40, 18 of those Qs with 5 faults.

    So I think that the numbers are probably statistically meaningful.

    Her Standard Q rate has certainly improved over time; 1 of 12 in '04, 3 of 23 in '05, 2 of 17 in '06, and 10 of 23 in '07.

    And I suppose our clean Q rate on GP has generally improved... 1 clean in '03, 1 clean in '06, and 2 clean in '07--doubling our annual rate! '-)