August 19, 2013

AKC NAC 2014: More Showing Needed To Qualify?

In our last post, we showed how the change in the qualifying requirements for entry into the 2014 National Agility Championship (NAC) affected the number of dogs who qualify and the average speed of those dogs. In this post, we’ll take a look at how the qualification changes affect the number of shows a typical competitor must attend in order to qualify.

In the chart below, the first row shows the total number of dogs who qualified for the 2013 NAC (under the 2013 requirements).

The second row shows the total number of dogs who would have qualified for the 2013 NAC if the new 2014 requirements had been in effect.

We calculated how many Q’s were required, on average, to meet the qualifications. Note that this is a number of Q’s, NOT a number of shows. We do not have data on average qualifying rate, so we can not calculate how many shows are required. However, each competitor can use their own qualifying rate to make an educated guess.

We also calculated which requirement was last achieved. For example, when the requirements were 400 points and 6 QQ’s, did competitors need points to finish qualifying, or one more QQ? Note that the percentage of dogs that needed points and the percentage of dogs that needed QQ’s (and in the case of the 2014 requirements, needed Q’s) does NOT add up to 100%. This is because some dogs will get their last QQ and their last points on the same run and will be included in both totals.

  # of Dogs Avg # Q’s to Qualify Needed Pts Needed QQ Needed Q
Dogs that qualified for the 2013 NAC 2897 29 80% 27% N/A
Dogs that would have qualified under the 2014 rules 2523 33 97% 4% 2%


1. On average, a competitor needs an additional 4 Q’s to qualify under the 2014 rules.
2. In 2013 80% of dogs where waiting on points to qualify, versus 27% of dogs who needed a double Q.
3. Under the 2014 rule change, 97% of competitors would have needed points even after they have obtained their 4 QQ’s and 20 Q’s.
4. For the overwhelming majority of competitors, the only important part of the 2014 qualifying rules is the 500 point requirement.

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  • Have you seen Sally Sheridan’s files that she put together after the qualifying changes? You might have to join the yahoo group to see them, but I think you will find them interesting. She calculated out what it will take (how many days) to qualify based on an individual dogs q-rate, qq-rate, points accumulation rate. She also compared how that same dog’s requirements would change from the previous NAC qualifying requirements. Very detailed stats and very interesting.

    • Mary –
      Yes, those are very interesting stats as well. It’s a great model for seeing how the changes affect different groups. And it gives the individual competitor a model for how it will affect them. We came at the question from the other direction and evaluated the broad trends based on the distribution of dogs using last year’s results.

  • In the previous post the comment was made that there was “dismay that the new requirements would allow for slower dogs” at Nationals and that ‘faster’ dogs are at a disadvantage under the 2014 qualifying criteria. According to your data, 97% of the dogs need points as the last criteria to qualify – can someone explain to me why faster dogs would not accumulate those 500 points more easily? Maybe they could allow saddle weights to slow down the ‘faster’ dogs so they are not so disadvantaged.

    • Lars –
      One of the reasons that we put these posts together was that there was much speculation based on individual experiences. When you look at all of the dogs as a group, some of that speculation turned out to be false (that the new rules allowed in slower dogs), and some turned out to be true (that the new criteria would require people to attend more shows).

  • By the end of January, Red had earned the 4 QQ’s needed for 2014 Nationals, but did not have the 500 points required until end of April. He is a fast dog*, and our trial attendance has been moderate, averaging 4 days of competition per month of 2013. *Average YPS in 2013 JWW courses = 5.96

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