Review of our first dryland season

Lost Pines Dryland being our last race of the dryland season, it is now over for us! We had a great 1st Dryland season. 

Now it’s time to review how it went and learn from the successes or mistakes we made.

Here are our team’s results:

  • Championnats Sirius in Quebec: came in 2nd place in canicross 2k
  • Bristol Dryland: came in 13th place in canicross 5k
  • MacGregor Point derby: came in 1st place in canicross 3.5k
  • Lost Pines: came in 3rd place in canicross 2.4k

So in terms of results, we are really happy with our first season. It is very promising for such a young dog. Luna is only 1.5 year and it was her first race season! She will be even better next year with more experience. 

If you haven’t seen it already, here is a video of our Bristol Dryland race:

Here is what we learnt from our first race season. 

Meet other mushers 

We met some incredible people in this first season. We found out that the mushing world is very welcoming and friendly. People share the same passion and love for their dogs and the sports. We learnt a lot and will continue to learn from these people, by engaging with them and following them on social media to keep up with them. You will make connections that will help you grow.

I wanted to acknowledge someone in particular. Emily Ferrans, is a young musher who have been racing for 3 years now. We had met on social media before, and interacted a lot. She is very experienced so I very often turn to her for tips and advice. We were very lucky to meet with her in real life on 3 of our races. Yes she is that crazy person who will drive hours to travel to races! Emily is such a sweet person, and she inspires me in the sports. Emily, if you read this, know that you are an inspiration for us in the sports and that I was very happy to finally meet you in real life. 

Photographers

I talked about this a bit on a Facebook and Instagram post. But photographers are a huge thing we are going to work on in the off season. We found out that Luna loves having her picture taken on races 🙂 from the first race in Quebec, she almost ran into the photographer near the finish line. In Bristol, she stopped by the photographer and gave him a kiss. At MacGregor Point, we have a photo of her smiling at the picture. At Lost Pines there was no photographer so we were good! 

Is she used to posing for the camera and associate it with treats? Does she think it’s me behind the camera? I don’t know the why. But we sure need to work on it to make sure she does not pay attention to the photographer at our next races.

Go home

Something we noticed at Bristol, and then at MacGregor Point, is that a lot of people say “Go Home” to their dog when they approach the end of the race. How smart is that? Of course after running that far, the dogs are getting tired and they will want to go home to rest!

So we started implementing the “go home” during our training and races. It sure works! Gives her a last push for the last few meters. You have to be careful to not say it too early, so they don’t think you are fooling them, or it won’t work next times.

Now what next?

Well first we will take a bit of rest. Race season is very demanding on the body, so both athletes need to rest. Rest doesn’t mean no more trainings. But we will release the pressure and have more fun. 

I will talk about our next goals in a future blog post, but it includes a winter activity that we are going to try. Any guesses?

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