Integrity in scoring.

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Integrity in scoring.

Postby Peter Butterfield » Sun 23 Dec 2018 9:06 am

Browsing the RT rule proposals I was surprised to read some of the rationale citing common scoring practices, such as this argument for increasing control area point allowance: “Discussions amongst many judges acknowledge that... ...judges are deducting misdemeanours for steadiness, obedience and walking to heel from other areas of the score sheet as the misdemeanours exceed the 5 points available for deduction.” Here’s another one regarding pooping in the field “Currently the rules do not mention it but everyone penalises for it.”

I’ve often heard remarks like these but to see them actually documented is concerning. So my question is this: At what point do the Rules simply become guidelines, and when is it ok to change formal scales or introduce penalties to suit certain situations or personal beliefs?

Don’t get me wrong, I understand subjectivity and latitude in interpretation and opinion when it comes to assessment of performance, but the above examples cross a line for me. As a competitor I expect a level playing field. If I suspect that I am possibly losing more points in the field than the last team because I supposedly did not lose enough to begin with, I am not going to be happy.

I realise judges have a job to do and it can be hard to separate dogs, but I want to have faith in the system too.
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Re: Integrity in scoring.

Postby Peter Betteridge » Sat 29 Dec 2018 10:28 am

great question pete judges have multiple methods of arriving at a score which are all within the points structure allowed, The problem many judges have is what i term double dipping A dog that heels poorly or isnt steady and manoeuvrable at the pegs will probably be at a big disadvantage when it comes to getting a good look at the marks
so where do the points come off from??? the dog has penalized itself we don't need 2 sets of deductions for the one offence Are the handler and dog working as a team as they heel up and set up at the pegs??? 5 points are more than enough we are seeking to simulate hunting conditions good judges are looking for teamwork not counting commands
pooping would come under fouling the area or not working it isnt important which area points are deducted from just that the deduction is proportional
personally i would deduct more for marking territory thru piddling particularly on the way out to a bird
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Re: Integrity in scoring.

Postby Kerry Webster » Sun 30 Dec 2018 5:45 pm

Peter, as a judge of all three levels of stakes, I keep the deductions within the prescribed structure in the present rules. Yes, sometimes I find it difficult, especially with the 5 points allowed for steadiness, obedience and walking to heel, with there sometimes being vast differences between dogs. But, these are the rules that have been applied to retrieving, so we must comply. As Peter Betteridge says, dogs that aren't steady & obedient are often putting themselves at a disadvantage by not marking down properly, and that in itself will possibly attract deductions when sent to retrieve. I see this as two separate areas to be judged, with their own quota of points available.

I give myself an expectation of what I want to see from dogs on a run. If there is a good effort, close to my expectations, then the dog will be awarded scores reflecting that, and vice versa. Fouling on a retrieve has to have a penalty of some degree. My own opinion is that a dog that marks territory or fouls whilst on its way to a retrieve, receives a high deduction. If done after the retrieve & maybe close to returning to the control area, a smaller deduction would be made.

Quite a lot of judging the different stakes comes down to personal expectations of dogs competing, and also whether a dog is working to the satisfaction of the judge. If a dog sticks to the area of game, and is visibly working to find that game, my opinion is that it stays in the comp. There is no time limit set if a dog is hunting within the area of fall etc.

Personally, I believe every state should have a yearly meeting for judges within that state, to discuss the rules and their interpretations, voice any grievances, and generally talk about judging experiences. I particularly think that judges who haven't competed for over five years with a dog, in the levels they are qualified for, should do a refresher course and, at least be compelled to attend one stake per year and mark sheets, if only to keep up with trends within our sport.
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Re: Integrity in scoring.

Postby Paula Davidson » Mon 21 Jan 2019 5:58 pm

I agree with you Peter Butterfield. Greater compliance by judges with "The Rules" would encourage Triallers to enter under all Judges, not just those they perceive to be "fair".
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