December 20, 2023

December 20, 2023 Wednesday Wrap Up (UKI’s Greg Derrett, AKC Invitational, AI Fails)

On Last Week’s Episode…
My family continues our annual sleigh ride through holiday movies. After Love Hard last week, we watched Elf the other night and finished Holidate today. Elf will be great for kids but Holidate is definitely for a more mature crowd. And based on emails sent by you, some people out there actually enjoyed watching Love Actually. Maybe I’ll give it another try if my 13-year-old likes the trailer!

Bob Newhart (I loved watching Newhart as a kid) plays Buddy the Elf’s adopted father in this 2003 Christmas comedy. Will Farrell plays Buddy. (photo credit)

This Week’s Podcast
UKI Co-Founder and CEO Greg Derrett joined the podcast to discuss the inaugural UKI North American Invitational that will take place in Barrington, IL March 29-April 1, 2024. Take a listen as we delve into the exciting details of the inaugural UKI North American Invitational, exploring its unique format, who’s invited, and how it stands apart from other agility competitions, along with a peek into the future of UKI and the US Open! CLICK HERE TO LISTEN TO THE PODCAST

AKC Invitational
The 18th annual AKC Agility Invitational took place December 16-17 in Orlando, Florida, bringing together the top 5 dogs in each breed (determined by a points system) to compete for top placements and honors. Bad Dog Agility was well represented, with many VIP members competing, and several earning berths in the livestreamed Finals, which will be aired on ESPN2 on Christmas Eve at 9:00 p.m. ET. BDA instructor Jennifer Crank and Sheltie Bee won all four preliminary rounds in the 16” height class but picked up a refusal in the Finals. I think this serves as definitive proof that Jennifer is in fact a human being and not a cyborg sent from the future to win all of our big agility events. We love you Jennifer!

The Invitational event is preceded by the AKC Junior Agility Competition, consisting of two rounds (standard and jumpers) held on Friday for the under 18 competitors. The top junior in each height (by combined score) is invited to compete in the Agility Invitational on Saturday and Sunday. BDA sponsored junior athlete Jada Sawhney won the 8” class and the 24” class of the juniors competition with Papillon Fortune and Golden Retriever Tallee, respectively.

Jada Sawhney with Fortune, Zula, and Tallee

The other juniors who moved on to the Invitational event were: Ava Rawlings & Aksel (Miniature Schnauzer, 12″), Mia Federico & Dera (Border Collie, 16″), Katie Williamson & Voulez (Golden Retriever, 20″).

Let’s get back to talking about the AKC Invitational. Roger O’Sullivan and his Border Collie Trinity posted the fastest time in all heights with a 28.01 run. Take special note of the 12” height class, where the top 3 finisher were within 0.31 seconds of each other! Here’s a rundown of the top three finishers in each height category (CLICK HERE FOR FULL RESULTS):

8″ Height Class:

  1. Dot, a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel handled by Antonia Rotelle, with a time of 28.99 seconds.
  2. Maverick, a Pembroke Welsh Corgi handled by Sally Slade, finishing in 30.63 seconds.
  3. Saga, a Swedish Vallhund handled by Madison LeRoy, clocking in at 30.97 seconds.

12″ Height Class:

  1. Venture, a Shetland Sheepdog handled by Jean Lavalley, completing the course in 31.22 seconds.
  2. Ty, a Poodle handled by Cathi Winkles, with a time of 31.50 seconds.
  3. Dusty, an All American Dog handled by Sonja Davis, finishing in 31.53 seconds.

16″ Height Class:

  1. Trinity, a Border Collie handled by Roger O’Sullivan, leading the pack with 28.01 seconds.
  2. Bristol, a Cocker Spaniel handled by Ron Morris, clocking in at 31.16 seconds.
  3. Atty, a Dalmatian handled by Tod Hebert, completing the course in 33.49 seconds.

20″ Height Class:

  1. Mia, a German Shorthaired Pointer handled by Beth Janos, with an impressive time of 28.68 seconds.
  2. Lily, an Australian Shepherd handled by Andrea Boucher, finishing in 30.37 seconds.
  3. Bounce, a Golden Retriever handled by Lois L. Williams, clocking in at 31.30 seconds.

24″ Height Class:

  1. Rake, a Whippet handled by Jennifer Smith, leading the height category with 29.86 seconds.
  2. Granite, a Flat-Coated Retriever handled by Amber McCune, completing the course in 30.80 seconds.
  3. Nolan, a Labrador Retriever handled by Bridget M. Kennedy, with a time of 34.27 seconds.

Congratulations to all the participants and their incredible canine companions for an outstanding performance at the AKC 2023 Agility Invitational!

Artificial Intelligence and Dog Agility
The AI Revolution has most decidedly NOT begun. This week Sarah was experimenting with some new ChatGPT features and sent me screen shots of the session (shown below). Sarah wanted ChatGPT to create a picture of a profile image “suitable for an agility audience.” So the AI made a picture of a dog taking a tire jump, but put an actual truck tire beneath a regular jump. When Sarah asked the AI to remove the tire, hilarity ensued:

Holiday Break
The Wednesday Wrap Up will be back in mid-January, after we’ve spent some time with family (Isaac is coming home from college tonight!) and had a chance to recharge our batteries to gear up for 2024.

Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas, and Happy New Year! As always, email me at team@baddogagility.com with your comments and questions.

Happy Training,
Esteban

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