On June 8th and 9th the temperatures were extremely hot in Las Vegas, and so were the Cyclones of The Ballistic Racers Flyball Team. With a First Place win on Saturday and another on Sunday, the Cyclones were floating on cloud nine at The Race n Go Flyball Tournament.  Vegas, Cody, Mochi, Indie, Molly, and Pooky had clean runs which put them in First Place. Bullet Dogs did well too, with a Second Place win on Saturday and a Third Place win on Sunday.

It was on outstanding weekend of racing for the Ballistic Racers, placing on both days with both teams in the Riviera Hotel and Casino. To make things even better, they had the best Flyball Fumble Recovery ever posted on YouTube. Be sure to watch it as Zippy makes his fantastic save by running through the spectators to retrieve his ball, and then finishes the race!

All in all, it was a great weekend of flyball racing with our teammates and “Man’s Best Friend”.

Go Ballistic!

Brian and Joanne Matsumoto

Spring 2013

Spring 2013

Apollo is 7 and we have had him since he was 10 weeks of age….our only puppy rescue found in a cardboard box with 9 siblings. Apollo has shown himself to be one of the smartest dogs I have ever owned and was beginning to compete in flyball in only 5 months after learning the game. In 2012 he earned his first flyball titles and continues to improve his game. His other interest include agility and cuddling and romps at the beach with his brother.

Clark Kranz

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Dylan the Border Collie has been successfully competing in Flyball since January 2012. He is also moving along quickly with his agility training. However, his first love is Flyball where he gets to act like a maniac! When not in training, ‘Dilly’ loves to play fetch, interact with other dogs, and play games with the garden hose and doggie pool. He is also a great hiking buddy. Although he has tremendous drive and intensity when “working”, he is mellow in the house and quite the personality with his Chuck-it ball which he will drop at your feet or into your hand whenever you are ready to play. Other fun facts: he has turned on the stove (hoping for something yummy to appear?) and locked me out of the house – twice. I am not sure if the latter is reflective of his intelligence, or my stupidity. He also has the interesting habit of stopping to smell any kind of flowers. He slowly wags his tail while taking in the aroma. He makes me laugh every day and it is a joy to have him in my life.

Mochi is a rescue from the San Diego Humane Society. I fell in love with her the minute I saw her – the only dog that was jumping around on top of couches and dying for any attention. I adopted her when she was around 4 months as a playmate for her older brother Buster. We began taking her to agility classes where we met Brian/Joanne. They scouted Mochi as a flyball dog after seeing her run “zoomies” around the agility field. When she began her flyball career, she brought her crazy zoom runs with her. She started every practice jumping over practice gates and running around the field. Finally after much practice, she’s now one of the calmest dogs on the team and can actually stay on the flyball course with just a few zoomies left.

by Amber Chou

mochi

River is one of those border collies that does everything full throttle. A super easy dog to train, he took to flyball immediately. As much drive as he has, he is also a wonderful pet and friend to kids. River is a very competitive dog with extremely high drive who loves to have a job. You don’t want to be in the way when he is coming down the lanes because he has a job to do (just a bulldozer!).

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In Hurricane Utah on October 27th and 28th we had our best days ever. We came in 1st and 2nd place on that Saturday. Bullet Dogs came in first place with Zippy, Dylan, Herbie, Cody, Slash and Archer. Cyclones placed second with Vegas, Ryker, Chloe, Kirin, Molly and Pooky.

All the dogs got dressed up for the Halloween Costume Contest too. We had fun but didn’t win the contest this time. The winning dogs had some very elaborate and intricate costumes but our costumes weren’t bad for a last minute effort.

On Sunday, Bullet Dogs placed third. They were extremely close to second place, but were barely edged out. The most exciting fact though, was they broke our record again. Our previous 19.2 second record was broken with an 18.99 second run. It was the first time ever our team broke into the 18’s. Not only did we set a new record but we also had two perfect starts with Joanne and Mimi. Joanne had a perfect with Vegas and Mimi had a perfect start with Ryker.

We all had a great time, and realized the long drive was worth all our winning moments!

We only raced one day at Dogtoberfest in Ramona, Saturday October 6th, but it was one of our best days ever. Our Bullet Dog Team was on fire with Zippy, Dylan, Cody, Herbie, Slash and Archer.

Zippy!

Dylan!

Cody!

Herbie!

Slash!

Archer!

We were in preparation for our farthest trip ever to Hurricane Utah. We knew that the Utah tournament was only three weeks away, so we wanted to work out all the bugs.

The bugs were gone when Bullet Dogs came in First Place and broke our record with a 19.2 second run.

Indie says, “Go Ballistic!”

Our two other teams, Cyclones and the Jets, did very well too. Both The Cyclones and The Jets came in third place but were very close to second. As Amber K. put it, “We were smokin hot!” It was an outstanding day for Ballistic Racers with great wins, good food, and a new team record.

by Brian and Joanne Matsumoto

The Ballistic Racers Flyball Team got off to a slow start on Saturday, September 1st.  It was quite hot, and with a few things going wrong it was a challenging day. The bright spot was Max making his debut with his owner Mark. Max had several clean runs as the team and crowd cheered him on. After the teams had some ball dropping issues, false starts, and other problems, we quickly regained our focus and composure to get things under control. It was too late for us to place at the end of the day, but now we had our strategy for Sunday.
On Sunday, September 2nd, we were back to our normal status,  running clean races, winning and losing a few as usual. Sunday was much busier than Saturday though, since we were running three teams. The weather was much cooler however, with a nice cloud cover which hovered around throughout the day. Our Cyclone team kept running clean which really paid off for a second place win. Vegas, Cody, Mochi, Kirin, Indie, and Max brought home the second place win. Several times the Cyclones were behind, but because one of the dogs on the other team had to re-run, Cyclones came out ahead. It was great to have some fresh dogs on Sunday to liven up the mix and really get things moving along quickly. Archer made good gains and ran many clean races. Many dogs got new titles and Mochi ran her fastest race ever, a  5.6! As usual, we ate well and were exhausted by the end of the weekend but happy with ourselves and our great comeback.


All photos below, taken by Clark Kranz, Agile Dogs Photography

by Brian Matsumoto

Some flyball dogs are well suited for two or more sports, not just one. On our team alone, we have several dogs who do agility, lure coursing, and dock diving as well as flyball. The key issue here is to know the capability of your dog since every dog is different. Some canines adapt well to flyball, while others are great at agility. Still others have no problem doing both. Determine what sport your dog is good at, and then concentrate on that particular sport. Once your dog has some sports experience, you can move on to other sports. Your pet is smarter than you think. They will know the difference between the various sports and adjust to each venue. If your dog looks like he is not having fun, then he needs to try something else. Usually you can find a sport which suits your dog and you will like as well.
Our dog Zippy loves to play flyball and do agility. He is an excellent swimmer, and could probably do other dog sports if we had time. When doing multiple dog sports, it’s usually the handler’s availability which limits the number of sports the dog can do. Zippy lives for flyball and enjoys giving the opposing start dog a “run for his money”. In agility he anticipates the course and runs at full speed. You can see his enjoyment in the following Petco Commercial, as he leaps over the hurdles and whips through the weave poles. In agility he combines the speed and jumping ability he has learned in flyball with his natural ability to make sharp turns and quick decisions. Zippy loves the challenge and speed of both flyball and agility.

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Whatever sport or sports you choose, get out there with your dog and enjoy your time together. High energy dogs will find their own fun and it might be your sofa, cabinet door, or favorite recliner. Dog sports are some of the most rewarding fun you can have with your pooch so get started today!