With Matt being away most of the season and just making a brief appearance at Christmas, I have been training on my own or with friends which i have massively enjoyed and although dogs haven't been as 'race' fit as i would have liked, we have really enjoyed ourselves and dogs are happy and healthy. Losing snak was a massive blow personally and in a team context and I was a bit lost for a while but running dogs truly is good for the soul and snak leaves his legacy in our two youngest he helped train. Looking towards the future Matt will be home soon and fingers crossed no plans for any big trips with the navy for a few years so time to plan, get our heads down and enjoy new adventures and experiences with the dogs making more memories.
My last race of the season was Moors Valley a localish night rally. Due to seasons whilst in training and teaming up a boy and girl teams, I decided to run a team of four with the two piebalds Laika and Kara in lead, Pickle in wheel (girls just finished their seasons) with Snik who was back in harness after a few weeks break. Started off well and on the crossroads was a single marker. Always usually go straight on but there wasn't a double blue marker so I made the unfortunate split decision to turn left and I knew I had chosen the wrong direction when I saw no further markers! Dogs were amazing and listened to me completely to get us back home safe, I was very proud of myself with the control over the team and super pleased that our time spent training the dogs to listen and stop resulted with no problems where there was the potential for things to go very wrong. Sometimes it's only when you the musher make mistakes that you learn how far the team have come whilst rectifying these mistakes, so although disqualified I was really happy and impressed with the team and very much took the positive from an unfortunate situation and the dogs didn't realise they weren't on the correct trail and were just happy to run.
Mars has been running with his pal Tank Nashanessen crowfoot in training owned by Jon Matherick. Tank is a big strong, experienced 9 year old boy and very well matched with Mars who at 17 months is a big boy. Although we have really only been getting out once a week training Jon had a super run in the two dog class against some top competition and came third, 30 seconds behind 1st place and just 4 seconds behind 2nd reaching an average speed of 16mph, not bad for the lack of training and more importantly was a great experience for Mars at his first night race.