Last updated 3/18 10:37pm.
The Premier Sweepstakes class is now in its second year as an “optional” run at the NAC. As a Sweepstakes, money is at stake—the pool dependent on the entry size of the class. In larger jump heights, most notably the 20” division, the winner can cover a large chunk of their NAC expenses with a several hundred dollar payout. Clean runs in the Premier class will also count towards the new PAD (Premier Agility Dog) title. Results in this class have no impact on the actual nationals, so teams typically approach this run with more of a practice than competition mindset. However, unlike the morning’s warm-up run, teams cannot make up their own course, nor use treats in the ring.
4” Preferred Jump Height
Of the nineteen dogs who ran the 4” Premier class, 16 had clean runs over a span of 26 seconds. The winner of the 4” division was papillon Emme and Beth Rogers, one of the teams that mentioned in the 4” Preview. Emme posted a clear round and a time of 38.720, nearly six seconds ahead of the second place winner, sheltie Breeze and Therese Fleming. Within fractions of a second of Breeze were defending PNAC champion papillon Chase and Andrea Samuels and toy poodle Raven and Debbie Moore.
- 1st – Emme – Papillon – Beth Rogers – 38.720
- 2nd – Breeze – Sheltie – Therese Fleming – 44.220
- 3rd – Chase – Papillon – Andrea Samuels – 44.250
- 4th – Raven – Toy Poodle – Debbie Moore – 44.790
Despite a papillon-heavy class, three different breeds were represented in the top four spots in the 8”. Wren and Betsey Lynch, last year’s NAC runner-up, had a breakaway time of 35.750, more than two seconds ahead of Pembroke Welsh corgi True and Maureen Flaherty. Coming right up on True’s heels were toy fox terrier Bing, run in Premier by Karena Kosco, and papillon Zen and Daneen Fox. Zen has made the Challengers round at the past two Nationals, and has reached the podium several times at previous USDAA Cynosport events. Two other teams to watch from our 8″ preview—papillon Whimsy and Robin Kletke and Pembroke Welsh corgi Gunner and Leslie Rudy—earned some treat money on this run, finishing fifth and seventh, respectively. Rounding out the top eight were miniature American shepherd Marcy and Lindsay DeVito and papillon CJ and Andrea Samuels, one of four dogs Andrea has entered in the event.
- 1st – Wren – Papillon – Betsey Lynch – 35.750
- 2nd – True – Pembroke Welsh Corgi – Maureen Flaherty – 37.900
- 3rd – Bing – Toy Fox Terrier – Karena Kosco – 38.040
- 4th – Zen – Papillon – Daneen Fox – 38.080
Shelties swept the top four spots in this year’s 8” Preferred Premier class. Brittany Schaezler and Trip clinched the win with a time of 39.080, over a second ahead of runner-up Quinn and Anita Shockey. Her first time running at NAC in preferred, Trip went into the competition as the 8” preferred dog with the highest PowerScore, and a team to watch. Chase and Deborah McBride and Brooke and Mary Jane McCall rounded out the ribbons. There was more breed diversity in the 5th-8th placements. Beth Rogers, fresh off her win in the 4” division, earned some more gas money with her papillon Mikey in 5th place. Swedish vallhund Quincy and Renee Foster, all-American Jeter and Kaela Morris, and former NAC champion Sparkle and Patti Gagnon also finished in the top 8.
- 1st – Trip – Sheltie – Brittany Schaezler – 39.080
- 2nd – Quinn – Sheltie – Anita Shockey – 40.560
- 3rd – Chase – Sheltie – Deborah McBride – 41.100
- 4th – Brooke – Sheltie – Mary Jane McCall – 41.100
Former NAC and AWC member miniature poodle Bliss and Cassandra Schmidt won the 12″ regular class with a time of 33.370, over three seconds ahead of the second place dog, sheltie Bunny and Sarah Palm. Two rescue dogs from Arizona, papillon Minnie and Brenda Kautz and sheltie Lexi and Jeff Arnett (2015 EO team member) finished third and fourth, respectively. Rounding out the placements were sheltie JJ and Leslie Saito, sheltie Blaze and Deborah Roberts, parsons russell terrier Flip and Suzanne Birdsall, and parsons russell terrier Teazer and Becky O’Sell.
- 1st – Bliss – Miniature Poodle – Cassandra Schmidt – 33.370
- 2nd – Bunny – Sheltie – Sarah Palm – 36.890
- 3rd – Minnie – Papillon – Brenda Kautz – 38.880
- 4th – Lexi – Sheltie – Jeff Arnett – 39.060
Winning the 12” Preferred class was not a sheltie or border collie, but miniature poodle Pan and Rebecca Barkhorn, one of the teams noted in the 12” preferred preview. Hot on Pan’s heels were three border collies: Siryn and Donna Wasielewski, Visa and Timothy Vojtech, Ditto and Meryl Sheard, placing second through fourth, respectively. Rounding out the placements were sheltie Rodeo and Jennifer Thomas, cocker spaniel Sandi and Rita Berardino, and all-Americans Jimmy and Adrienne McLean and Smiley Riley and Paula Kotowski.
- 1st – Pan – Miniature Poodle – Rebecca Barkhorn – 35.400
- 2nd – Siryn – Border Collie – Donna Wasielewski – 36.130
- 3rd – Visa – Border Collie – Timothy Vojtech – 36.280
- 4th – Ditto – Border Collie – Meryl Sheard – 39.960
The infiltration of border collies into the 16” class was present in today’s Premier Sweepstakes, with the breed sweeping the top five spots. Hottie and Debbie McLean won the class, with defending NAC Spice and Cynthia Hornor less than a second behind. Valiant and Loretta Vojtech, Blazen and Michelle Schwartzbauer, and Bizzie and Sherry Fieser placing third through fifth, respectively. There was a little more breed diversity in the rest of the placements; handler Anne Swan made the placements with both of her Australian cattle dogs – Kylie took 6th and Maizey, 8th, while sheltie Aislinn and Jon McConnell finished in 7th.
- 1st – Hottie – Border Collie – Debbie McLean – 32.570
- 2nd – Spice – Border Collie – Cynthia Hornor – 33.220
- 3rd – Valiant – Border Collie – Loretta Vojtech – 33.730
- 4th – Blazen – Border Collie – Michelle Schwartzbauer – 33.790
Like the 16” Regular class, the 16” Preferred placements were dominated by border collies, and of the competitors, only 13 posted clear rounds. Rumor and Whitney Lamberson edged out Power and Kate Moureaux by just under a second. Loud and Dawn Filips and Cooper and Gill Chapman continued the border collie sweep. The first non-border collie in the placements was Labrador retriever Makin and Denise Evans. Rounding out the placements were border collie Dewley and Patty Drom, and Australian shepherds Ponto and Ruth Miller and Pebbles and Dan Salinas.
- 1st – Rumor – Border Collie – Whitney Lamberson – 34.280
- 2nd – Power – Border Collie – Kate Moureaux – 35.190
- 3rd – Loud – Border Collie – Dawn Fillips – 37.320
- 4th – Cooper – Border Collie – Gill Chapman – 37.340
Border collies swept the placements in the very closely contested 20” class, where the top four spots were separated by a mere 0.330 seconds. Winning the class was Ky and Nancy Kemna, followed by Jedi and Susan McGowen, recent Crufts winner and 2015 AWC team member Strafe and Rosanne DeMascio, and 2014 NAC champion Mynx and Robin Kletke. Finishing out the placements were Punk and Timothy Vojtech, Bizi and Ann Zarr, Guts and Dawn Fillips, and Jolt and Tawni Millet.
- 1st – Ky – Border Collie – Nancy Kemna – 32.660
- 2nd – Jedi – Border Collie – Susan McGowen – 32.800
- 3rd – Strafe – Border Collie – Rosanne DeMascio – 32.840
- 4th – Mynx – Border Collie – Robin Kletke – 32.990
The 20” Preferred class was the only jump height where a different breed filled each spot in the ribbons. Maggie and border collie Lori LeBlanc won the class, trailed by German shepherd Lux and Michaela Krohn, golden retriever Teddy and Lori Judd, and Labrador retriever Sadie and Samantha Saldana. Finishing out the placements were German shepherd Spyder and Elaine Mathys, Labrador retriever Ruby and Michael Vanek, boxer Zephyr and Jennifer Yates, and Labrador retriever Remi and Deb Hegg.
- 1st – Maggie – Border Collie – Lori LeBlanc – 43.220
- 2nd – Lux – German Shepherd – Michaela Krohn – 44.190
- 3rd – Teddy – Golden Retriever – Lori Judd 45.020
- 4th – Sadie – Labrador Retriever – Samantha Saldana – 45.500
The 24” class results in the Premier Sweepstakes highlighted both some border collie dominance and the diversity of the jump height. Torque and Amber Genest beat Axl and Rita Berardino for first by 1.5 seconds, while River and Regina Burton took third. Whippet Moquah and Jennifer Smith finished out the ribbons in fourth place. Rounding out the placements were Belgian tervuren Copper and Carilee Moran, all-American Kodiak and Jordan Smith, poodle Shambhu and Russ Thorpe, and Dutch shepherd Flash and Amanda Wilson.
- 1st – Torque – Border Collie – Amber Genest – 36.570
- 2nd – Axl – Border Collie – Rita Berardino – 38.040
- 3rd – River – Border Collie – Regina Burton – 40.050
- 4th – Moquah – Whippet – Jennifer Smith – 40.740
The Premier 26” class was very small, with only five dogs entered. Most handlers opted to take a shot at winning the last spot on the European Open team awarded to the winner of the 26” ISC class, leaving the premier class empty. Only one team—border collie Synner and European Open coach Ann Braue—posted a clear and non-eliminated time.
- 1st – Synner – Border Collie – Ann Braue – 36.120