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Thread: Getting started in field trials

  1. #101
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Shih View Post
    Earl

    There is no perfect system. The ideal situation is to have great judges who are also great teachers. Just as there are judges who have no business teaching apprentices because of lack of judging skills, there are great judges, who have no business teaching apprentices because of lack of teaching skills.

    The problems that you raise about judging in general, and about the apprentice system as well, are in no small measure the responsibility of the individual clubs. The clubs need to be more discriminating and engage in more long term planning about judges - if they want to have better trials. Look at EE and look at how many trials coming up in the next few months do not have their judges listed. If you wait to the last minute to do things, then don't be surprised if things aren't optimal.

    I also think that that the individual needs to take more responsibility for his/her education. When I first started out, before I accepted an assignment, I wanted to know how my co-judge was. And even after I found out, I would not make a commitment until I had spoken to John Goettl and others, who had been in the game a long time, gave me the Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval. My second AA judging assignment was with Judy Powers, whose first words to me were "I heard I passed the background check." As in all things, good basics go a long way. If I were a newcomer being asked to judge, I would be very selective in who my first co-judges were. I would want not only a good judge, but someone with the patience and willingness to help me learn.

    Ted
    Ted

    I know I come from the "caveman era" and only judge a few trials a year now, but, still train my dogs and try to stay in touch with the contemporary sets-ups and what good dogs can do in field trials. Having said that years ago when I got my first eight points in the 1980's (AKC doesn't even keep track) everyone I judged with at that time had judged a National event. How that worked out I don't know but I learned a lot. I also trained with a fellow that had about 85 all-age points judging so that helped. What really helped me as a judge was "paying my dues" as it was called by judging numerous minor stakes before getting my first point at the Madison Retriever Club. Now those "dues " went back" to the late 1960's in sanction trials , until my first licensed derby in the 1970's judging assignment. Mostly because I was the Qualifying guy who ran a few all-age stakes with no success. When I got a second place in a Amateur all-age at Virgina Minnesota, shortly after was asked to judge my first major stake. Apparently this new trend of folks need this instant gratification. I ask whats wrong with clubs and some do, ask you to do a minor stake first,check you out, even if you are a eight point major stake, then ask you to judge an all-age? Whats wrong with starting off in the minors, then advancing to the majors? I think it is the host club's responsibility , not the AKC, to monitor the qualifications. Apprenticeships are good, something is better then nothing, but, the responsibility is with all of us in the field trial game, we have to police ourselves. Like a fellow once told me no one pays attention to you unless you are holding "the book" .

    Earl
    Earl Dillow

  2. #102
    Senior Member DarrinGreene's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by john fallon View Post
    My vote is for something less.

    Per the rules , other than safety considerations etc. between the event committee and the judges... I do not feel that there should any consideration given to the opinion of a third party with regard to the quality of the dog work when judging an AKC Field Trial.



    john
    I didn't take Ted's response to say that Chris had input on placements, just that he was asked what his were and for the rational, and then the JUDGES made the decision.

    Ted knows full well the rules and doesn't seem to me as a gentleman who would be in the business of breaking them.
    Darrin Greene

  3. #103
    Senior Member Ted Shih's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DarrinGreene View Post
    I didn't take Ted's response to say that Chris had input on placements, just that he was asked what his were and for the rational, and then the JUDGES made the decision.

    Ted knows full well the rules and doesn't seem to me as a gentleman who would be in the business of breaking them.

    The Rule Book does not specify what the apprentice can or cannot do.

    As to whether Chris had any input into callbacks - or placements - he did not. But, we did ask him to tell us his process of decision making as to both.

    In fact, very early on, as the two of us were waiting for Chris to gather his thoughts, we both told Chris the importance of saving time, by thinking about callbacks, as you go along in a trial, rather than waiting to do callbacks until after the test is completed. One of the things that I think Andy and I impressed on Chris is the importance of time management.

    I think that the apprentice program has merit and wish that it were implemented more often.
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  4. #104
    Senior Member EdA's Avatar
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    While I agree that apprenticeship has merit given the time constraints and pressures of judging I consider it less than ideal and would not have much interest in participating. I think there are potentially better ways and some years ago I proposed a type of mentoring for prospective judges by a qualified all-age judge not judging the stake. There were a number on inherent problems associated with such a process including the second guess factor on the judges of record. Still I think there must be a better way although there seems to be little interest from anyone in authority.

  5. #105
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    Quote Originally Posted by DarrinGreene View Post
    I didn't take Ted's response to say that Chris had input on placements, just that he was asked what his were and for the rational, and then the JUDGES made the decision.

    Ted knows full well the rules and doesn't seem to me as a gentleman who would be in the business of breaking them.

    The point I high lighted was addressing your question.
    Ted, with apprenticeship being the last step before actually getting an assignment, wouldn't you think that the apprenticeship as you described it, and nothing less
    It was highlighted for clarity I guess I should have enlarged it also.

    You said that nothing less would do for ALL apprenticing ....I said (that in keeping with the "two judge" portion of the rules) something less would do..

    A case on point would be the affect an apprentice's compelling arguments made "off the record" so to speakthat that may have un/subconcously swayed one or both judges to any degree in their placements. No Darrin, Imput from ANY third party during placement deliberation is not a good thing in my estimation .

    john
    Last edited by john fallon; 01-15-2014 at 05:15 PM.
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  6. #106
    Senior Member roseberry's Avatar
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    newf,

    as others have said, get involved with a good training group, join a club, work some trials(throw birds, shoot birds etc.), enter and run your dog, marshall a few stakes. do these activities in any order you want, none are prerequisites for others.

    if you are forward, interested and respectful enough to listen, field trial people will go out of their way to help you.(at least until you have a dog that can beat them)

    i rarely post anything that can be taken seriously on this forum. what i am about to post is an exception. three years ago i decided i was going to "run some trials". in that time i have made the aquaintance and friendship of many people, many are legendary in this sport. from more than a few of this sport's elite competitors i have recieved advice and counsel, trained with, been granted open access to the property of, hung out with, discussed litters and breedings, talked progress of puppies from the same litters with, discussed problems and solutions with and on and on. field trial people have been very gracious to me, those you may consider "unapproachable" because of their success have been even more gracious.

    in terms of the opportunity of sport let's say i am a golfer. can i enter and be paired with mickelson........no! if i play basketball can i enter and play with lebron and wade.......no! but if my dog is running good and i think i want to go compete with ted and dr. ed and danny farmer and hugh arthur or whoever, i just load up my truck and go take a whack at it! where else can an average guy like me ever hope to compete(i didn't say be competitive) in an elite level athletic team sport with the best in the sport on any given weekend?

    i may never have a great dog. i may have a great dog now? but i have fun!
    john mccallie

  7. #107
    Senior Member DarrinGreene's Avatar
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    You know I respect your viewpoint John but I hope you're underestimating the ability of the judges to make their decisions independent of discussion with an apprentice.
    Darrin Greene

  8. #108
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    Quote Originally Posted by Criquetpas View Post
    My take on apprenticeships. There has been a trend lately in the Midwest anyway ,for various folks serving apprenticeships with experienced judges who have never completed a all-age stake, or even got through the first series. Some of these folks now have a few Major points under their belt. There are some judges judging at the all-age level, 8 point majors, who don't even have enough minor points. Some believe that are on various committees selecting judges on how hard a worker at club events works. No reference to their ability or experience in running dogs. On the circuit there are judges in the field trial game who have never placed a dog or even finished a dog in a all-age stake. Many suggest that if you haven't trained your own dog , how can you judge, that's pure hogwash. There are many out there in the field trial world, pro trained dogs run by amateurs, who run many weekends, finish trials, place dogs and title them. I have judged with those who have owned National Field Champions, who didn't have a clue on setting up tests or looking at good dog work. On the otherside have judged with those who just try to get to the water blind to get in the last series , have JAMed or placed a few times, but, are excellent at setting up tests and know good dog work. What we are developing are a list of Performance Judges listed on the AKC site that may or may not be qualified to even judge ! I think the committees that select judges rather then judge swapping or local availability, should do some "homework" on who is selected to judge. If not this "apprenticeship pool" is not contributing to the best interest of the sport, in my opinion.
    I have the 1965-2009 stats to back up what you post except it may be worse than you think. & it's not much better at the National level. Judges who lack experience with "Dogs in the field" will many times make those mistakes that affect the placings at many trials. Those placings will go to the well connected more often than not . That's why there is no uproar .

    Quote Originally Posted by EdA View Post
    While I agree that apprenticeship has merit given the time constraints and pressures of judging I consider it less than ideal and would not have much interest in participating. I think there are potentially better ways and some years ago I proposed a type of mentoring for prospective judges by a qualified all-age judge not judging the stake. There were a number on inherent problems associated with such a process including the second guess factor on the judges of record. Still I think there must be a better way although there seems to be little interest from anyone in authority.
    For those of you who fly - I mentored many young engineers in the decision making process during my working years. I know how it's done successfully & for those who fly you better hope so , the apprentice program does not meet that criteria.

    AS Roseberry in his post states, "this is a sport an average joe can enjoy & rub up to the big-wigs". What he has said is there are no standards to meet as there were in the sport's beginning (started by entrepeneurs) & the RAC has made sure in their pronouncements that there will be little as they come from an environment that does not have exacting standards. They may be ethical as can be & I believe they are, they just do not know how to set a requirement necessary to meet a goal.

    & unless you go to the college level in the STEM world do not say the education establishment should have a say in the setting of those standards .
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