UK Agility International (UKI)

02 Jan 2010Steve Schwarz

Greg and Laura Derrett have announced a new agility organization is starting in the United States.
UK Agility International (UKI) is the North American version of United Kingdom Agility (UKA) that was started in the (you guessed it) United Kingdom in 2004.

I’m primarily interested in UKI because they will be offering “European Style” courses, with multiple Pull Throughs and other challenging course design elements. After watching IFCS and FCI competitions on DVD and the web I like the challenges these courses offer for the handler. European handlers seem to be more athletic and are forced to drive with their dog on course to avoid the traps and off courses. There are example courses posted on their website.

Jump heights are still being worked out. Since this organization is “competing” with USDAA for competitors they are using the “big dog” USDAA jump heights and cutoffs but are trying to attract more smaller dogs by adjusting the 12 and 16 in height ranges. Dog in the “midi”, “toy” and “micro” classes all jump under their wither’s height. A lower jump height category (like Preferred) is also offered.

They also have a page on the website describing the benefits of UKI for competitors and clubs. Some features that interested me:

  • Enter all trials online
  • All clean round results are recorded on each competitor's personal account. It may be accessed free of charge by the competitor.
  • Lower and safer A-frame height matching international standards 5ft 7in (FCI & all GB organizations)
  • Up contacts are NOT judged on ANY of the contact equipment.
  • Any run can be converted to a training run with a non-audible toy allowed in the ring
  • Late/day of trial entries allowed

You can also transfer your dog into an appropriate level based on their AKC, USDAA, CPE or NADAC titles, so you don’t have to start an advanced dog at the bottom and pay/enter a lot of trials to get them into an appropriate challenge level.

There are some fun matches being offered this winter to get feedback from potential competitors; after which the rules will be finalized and official registration opened. I’m planning on going to the Fun Match in Southern Wisconsin later this month to give it a try.

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