Call Direct & Send

I’ve been giving all of the games that will be played at the TDAA Petit Prix a good workout over the past few weeks. In the TDAA trial I’m judging this weekend all of the games are games we’ll be playing at the Petit Prix. While the courses I’m using aren’t the same, obviously, I’m holding rigorously to the rules of play so that I understand them inside and out.


This is a simple follow-the-numbers game with bonuses for certain distance elements.

The dog will earn bonuses for each of the distance elements:

  • The Call (10 pts), taking a lead-out beyond the containment line for jumps #1 and #2;
  • The Direct (10 pts), handler stays on the opposite side of the containment line as the  dog does #11 through #13;
  • The Send (15 points), handler stays on the opposite side of the containment line as the dog does #6 through #9.

There is no penalty for failing to perform any one of the three distance elements.


Call Direct & Send is played time, plus faults, minus bonus. The dog will qualify if the score is equal to or less than the established SCT after faults are added and bonuses are subtracted. SCT is based on rates of travel respective to the level and jump height of the dog.


Traditionally Call Direct & Send is based on a Jumpers course; and is called “Jumpers CDS”. But in the interest of nesting I based the course on the set of obstacles on the floor from the standard classes.

The qualifying criterion stated in the briefing is really a bit of a give away; (that’s right, I gave away the farm). By rights the qualifying set point should be based on the rates of travel from the standard classes but adjusted with some expectation of success. For example GIII might be reduced by 25 points; GII by 20; and GI by 15. It still would not be absolutely necessary to earn any or all of the distance bonuses; but the bonuses would certainly add insurance in a time plus faults less bonus scoring basis.

At the Petit Prix the question of qualifying is mostly irrelevant. The competitor’s ambition is to actually win or place highly in the class. Out in the hinterlands we often err in the set-points for qualification whether it’s a matter of skunking the class or giving away the farm. If I err I’d prefer that it be the latter.

Only about 10% of the dogs than ran earned all three bonuses in spite of the fact that all three were rather simple in nature. The one that stymied the class the most was the “send” as shown here. The biggest difficulty was that so many handlers didn’t know how to give focus and pressure forward to the #7 pipe tunnel. As the handler arrives at the line she’ll turn sideways (actually facing on to the #9 jump) while making the send to the #7 pipe tunnel. Also, in the diminutive bit of real estate in the post turning sequence from the chute to the #6 jump more often than not the handler was slamming on her brakes at the #6 jump forward of the dog… which is not a good ingredient for success in the send.

While I would be personally confident in making the dead-away send to the pipe tunnel (it’s only 10′, after all) I might entertain an accelerating movement like a Tandem Turn through jump #5. This makes the whole thing more robust and more energetic and certainly gives the handler a lot more real estate to be a working member of the team.

Bud’s Google-proof Trivia Contest

What is the “alias” of this comic book villain?

First correct answer, posted as a reply to this blog post, wins a free copy of the August Jokers Notebook.


Questions comments & impassioned speeches to Bud Houston: Check out my latest publication the Jokers Notebook ~ Dog Agility Distance Training ~ Issue #0 ~ August 2010 available on the Country Dream Web Store: . Readers of my web log get a discount: Enter “special00” in the box for the discount code. And that will take $5.00 off the price of the order.

2 Responses to “Call Direct & Send”

  1. Lisa Says:

    Mysterio, aka Quentin Beck

  2. Jon Says:

    Mysterio, alias used was world-renowned psychiatrist Dr. Ludwig Rinehart

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