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Up | LOW 550 2017 - 2018
LOW 550

A SMART New Event for Agility Dogs

LOW 550 is a national jumping cup competition for handlers wishing to compete in a prestigious qualifier at the same height as the Lower Height Option at Kennel Club Agility tests. Sponsored by the internationally renowned SMART (Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation Therapy) Clinic, this special event is open to all dogs in the Large height category (i.e. measuring over 430mm at the withers) with hurdles set at 550mm.

LOW 550 National Jumping Cup 2017 - 2018

The LOW 550 National Jumping Cup will continue for another exciting series of qualifying heats during 2017-2018, for a Final in September 2018.   

This prestigious event is open to all grades of Large dog, with hurdles set at 550mm (Large LHO).  Once again, there will be separate competitions for CG 1-4 and CG 5-7 and an award for the Best Junior, but, this time, host clubs will also have the choice of running their heat as a Special class or as the LHO part of a Standard Progression Class/es. 

There will be 10 opportunities to qualify at different Kennel Club shows around the country for the Final at Prestbury Park Premier Agility Show in 2018.

The heats for 2017- 2018 have been confirmed as below. To read the show report, click on the link.

September 2017

  • Prestbury Park Premier Agility Show - Cirencester Park, Gloucestershire GL7 6JT

  • Tenterden Magic Open Show - Ashford, Bethersden, Kent TN26 3DQ

  • Suffolk Five Rivers Open Show - Trinity Park, Ipswich, Suffolk IP3 8UH

  • Phaze Purple Open Show - Mains Farm, Kirkoswald, Penrith CA10 1DH

April 2018

  • Wallingford DTC Open Agility Show - Newbury Showground, Berkshire RG18 9QZ

  • Lincoln Agility Enthusiasts Open Agility Show - Lincolnshire Showground, Lincolnshire LN2 2NA 

 May 2018

  • Blackdown Agility Society Premier Open Show - West Buckland, Somerset TA21 9LN 

June 2018

  • Oswestry Open Agility Show - Whitchurch Rugby Club, Shropshire SY13 1EU

  • Godmanchester DTC 3 Day Open Agility Show - The Camp, Cambridgeshire PE26 2XD

  • Golden Valley - Top Barn Farm, Worcester WR6 6NH

 September 2018

  • Prestbury Park DATC Championship and Premier Agility Show - Cirencester Park, Gloucestershire GL7 6JT

With grateful thanks to our generous sponsors

For more information about LOW550, email: fourth_height@yahoo.co.uk or go to Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/low550 or website: http://areyou4it.org.uk

Wallingford Judge's Report for Combined Grades 5-7
By Jan Smith

I was pleased to be asked to judge this qualifier at the Wallingford show on 22nd April.

In addition to the smaller Large dogs, I thought there may be some older dogs or dogs coming back from injury amongst the runners, so I wanted to set a flowing course that could be handled in different ways which would test the handlerís skill in interpreting the course.  

I decided not to use any curved tunnels because I didnít want dogs hitting the bend at speed and, with the ground still soft after so much rain, I didnít want to be replacing pulled pegs all day.  This was a good decision as my tunnels stayed put the whole day. Not one peg needing to be replaced, and our ring finished first.

The course produced 32 clear runs, 14 faulted runs and 29 eliminations.

So how did the course run?
A few people lost their dog over Number 8 after the tunnel at Number 3. One or two dogs seemed intent on doing that no matter what, but a few handlers just didnít call their dog whilst in the tunnel. Those running up to handle Number 4 from the front appeared to inadvertently send their dog straight on, whereas those who recalled over Number 4 from the backside and scooped into Number 5 didnít have the 3-8 issue.

The course at Numbers 6-7 didnít cause many problems but I felt pushing around the back of Number 6 and then pushing into the tunnel was more efficient than recalling to the back of 6, sending the dog over 6 and then pulling in to scoop to the tunnel leaving you out of position for jump 8.  A few dogs having been sent over Number 6 continued to the wrong end of Number 7.

The dogs were tight coming out of the tunnel at Number 10, in contrast to the earlier tunnel at Number 3 where the dogs had wanted to go on. This was smartly handled by pushing to the tunnel with the left hand and holding the right hand back to collect the dog, whilst turning towards Number 11, so that as the dog entered the tunnel it was already aware that the handler was going back in the other direction.

Jumps Number 12-14 could be handled in many ways, so the challenge was to find the efficient line.  Some pulled in from Number 12 to 13, then turned the dogs left to wrap the wing although a few of these back jumped Number 13.  I thought those who ran past Number 12 and pushed into Number 13, then either wing wrapped the dog left or turned the dog right and pushed into Number 14, had the better lines.

The home run required the handler to be at jump 18 to push the dog out or have a good right command to take the correct course. In an impressive run, the winning handler left his dog at Number 14 and cut across to Number 18, knowing his dog would complete the rest without him. I think that was possibly my scariest moment - seeing Barrie James - who is a little bit bigger than me - hurtling in my direction with his eyes back on his dog. My turn to move swiftly.

I really enjoyed my day and hope everyone who ran in this qualifier did as well. I wish the two qualifiers, Barrie and Julie, all the best in the Final.

  1. Barrie James with Mendipstar Rumour Has It - 28.622

  2. Julie Hutton with Back to Snafuture - 30.594

Special thanks to LOW 550 sponsors SMART Clinic, Norton Rosettes, Fun with Fido and Tick Tock the 4th Height Dog.