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Should the AKC allow a club to hold a O/H Amat and Qual?

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  • no

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Competing trials

6997 Views 52 Replies 23 Participants Last post by  Tim Carrion
We have all discussed the need for smaller FTs and the the need to attract more people, not dogs.
Should the AKC allow clubs a 3rd trial per year that is a 2 day event with 2 stakes O/H Amat and O/H Qual?
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Be careful what you wish for . . . creating OH for an OPEN?

1) Honestly now ~ AS A GENERAL RULE, Amateur trained dogs, run by Amateurs are not as high caliber as a Pro trained dog. So, an amateur gets a win at an OH Open ~ sure he/she would feel GREAT, but what's the downside? An eventual FC that doesn't fully measure up to national caliber competition. Then you throw in the ultimate "breeding frenzy" that happens with a new FC and you begin to dilute the quality of pups for the next generation of field trials.

2) Adequate field help @ field trials. Most of the clubs here in the midwest circuit have a very difficult time finding enough help to run their trials run with smooth mechanics. As a judge I can say ~ it makes time management easy when you have good help, so your tests can go off without too many interuptions, etc. The folks I know around here are tired and ready for some good R+R after 2 trials in a year ~ and you all want to add a 3rd? What, have you all lost your collective minds?

3) If you really want to limit your numbers - do what RMRC did this fall and throw a Restricted Open . . . it made judging very easy ~ Ted, correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe our actual competing number was 57 dogs.

4) The OPEN and the AMATEUR stakes are not the place to attract "new blood" or "hook someone" into the game. This has generally been reserved for the Derby ~ which is why it starts on a Saturday (generally) and most often gives the young competitor a chance to play for at least 3-4 series . . . green ribbons are encouraged in the Derby so folks who are just beginning, want to come back for more.

So be careful what you wish for . . . it just might bite you in the end.
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First ~ I know of only one pro in our area that owns any of the dogs he owns.

My own trainer/handler, Bill Eckett wouldn't consider it.

The folks you mentioned at "amateurs" ~ great people, great handlers ~ who train their dogs daily . . . I guess my definition of an amateur would be one who doesn't train their dogs 8-10 hours a day (as a pro would), but one who runs out after a full day of work and trys to squeeze in one or two set-ups, and then spends the weekend training.

In my all-age judging experience ~ the "true" amateur trainer/handler is too often easy to identify by their inability to read a test and make the necessary handling adjustments.

At our club ~ KCRC, we do hire field help for all 4 events (2 FT's + 2 HT's) we host each year. KCRC has an excellent core group that works their collective tails off and keeps the mechanics going pretty darn smooth. However; other clubs that I've run or judged at ~ don't seem to be as fortunate as we are.
It's not evil to restrict the number of entries ~ but, it does potential penalize a hot young dog or perhaps a seasoned "middle aged" dog on the verge of breaking through in the OPEN. That's the downside of limiting trial #"s.

A Restricted Open does keep the numbers down. Is it fair to the dogs? I'm not sure ~ certainly it's not fair to the owners paying a monthly bill hoping that this weekend will be there chance.

Lastly ~ keep in mind that Pro's provide the lifeblood for this game, namely $'s. Limit the amount of dogs they can enter and clubs won't be able to put on trials, unless they have a wealthy club member willing to underwrite the FT losses.
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