2016 AKC NAC Preferred 16″ Preview: A Highly Competitive Class

When it comes to exciting classes to follow at the AKC National Agility Championships, the Preferred 16″ class is among the top.  This group is comprised of not only new, talented dogs every year, but also the highly competitive teams moving to Preferred from the Regular 20″ class—the biggest class at NAC.

Last year’s Preferred 16″ Champion, Steeple—handled by Kim Terrill, will not be returning to defend their title. Since Kim will not be returning with Steeple, none of the Preferred 16″ champions from the last six years of NAC events will be in attendance, but two of last year’s Finalists (Wildfire handled by Amanda Emery and Chili Pepper handled by Dale Hokens) are competing, seeking a return to the finals ring.

However, Wildfire and Chili Pepper will not have an easy return to the Finals ring as they will be competing against a good portion of the Bad Dog Agility Power 60 for the 16″ class, including the team currently holding highest spot in the rankings, Shock! handled by Sherry Kluever.

Power
Power

The path to Finals for the Preferred 16″ class will also include previous world team handlers like Kate Moureaux (who will be competing with Power) and Jennifer Crank (who will be competing with Xtreme).

Other amazing teams to watch will be Dude handled by Caryl Ricca, Slick handled by Steve Moon, and Rumor handled by Whitney Lamberson who also hold spots on the Power 60 and have proven themselves to be formidable contenders.

With its abundantly talented dogs and dynamic handlers, this year’s Preferred 16″ class has become the group to watch for spectators!  Ring schedules can be found here, and the Preferred 16″ class can be viewed via live-stream here on Dog Agility Now.

Kama Rueschenberg

Kama Rueschenberg

An English major, USDAA judge, and trainer at Club-Doggie, Kama has a strong interest in animal behavior and cognition. She is a high-level competitor with multiple placements in regional and national finals. She also created the Arizona Animal Actors Talent Agency which has provided many animals for print and national commercials.