NCA Trial Classes and Rules

 

  • Any dog of any age may compete in the Open class.
  • Any handler may compete in the Open class. 
  • Dogs who have competed in the Open class may not be eligible to compete in some non-sanctioned classes at some trials. Please check with the trial host to determine class eligibility before running.
  • A handler who has competed in an NCA sanctioned Open class is no longer eligible to compete in the Intermediate or Novice class.

General Information

  • The NCA qualifying year is April 1 thru March 31.
  • The NCA charges a sanctioning fee of $5 for each eligible dog or handler run in a NCA sanctioned class.
  • A class must have a minimum of four (4) dogs to receive points for that class.
  • Handlers must be NCA members before going to the post in order to earn points in any sanctioned class, but they do not need not be members in order to run in a sanctioned class.
  • NCA members competing in NCA sanctioned trials will be eligible to earn points for their dog(s) toward qualification for the NCA Regional Finals and the NCA National Finals.
  • Members are eligible to earn points beginning on the first day of their membership.
  • Because each trial is controlled by the individual trial host, not all NCA sanctioned classes may be offered at every trial.
  • Trials may include additional non-sanctioned classes such as Rancher, Pro-Novice, or Beginner. The qualifications for these classes are left up to the trial host.

Calculation of Trial Points

  • The top 30% of dogs in a class will earn points.
  • A class must have a minimum of 4 dogs to earn points.
  • NCA qualifying points will be calculated at the NCA office when the trial results are received.
  • Points are calculated based on the number of eligible dogs in the class, 30 points per dog.
  • First place in the class receives the full points available, with each dog below receiving 100 points less until no more points are available.

NCA National Finals

  • The National Finals will be held in June of each year.

  • Handlers who are NCA members may earn points to qualify dogs for the NCA National Finals in the Open, Nursery, and Intermediate classes in any NCA sanctioned trial held between April 1 and March 31 of that qualifying year.

  • Points earned during the qualifying year determine eligibility for the NCA National Finals.  

  • Handlers are limited to two (2) dogs per class.

The size of each class at Finals may fluctuate from year to year depending various factors. If you need more information about class sizes at the National Finals, please call a Board member for clarification.

 

Open Class

  •  50 dogs will compete in the National Finals Open class.
  • A handler may apply to compete in the National Finals Open class with any dog that has earned points in an Open class during the qualifying year.  – The 50 highest point earning dogs  entered will compete.

 

Nursery Class

  •  A handler may apply to compete in the National Finals Nursery class with any Nursery age dog that has earned points in a Nursery or Open class during the qualifying year. 
  •  The 30 highest point earning dogs entered will compete.
  • A qualified dog may compete in both the Open and Nursery classes.

 

Intermediate Class

  • 30 teams will compete in the National Finals Intermediate class. 
  • A handler may apply to compete in the National Finals Intermediate class with any eligible dog with which he/she has earned points in an Intermediate class during the qualifying year. 
  •  The 35 highest point earning teams entered will compete.

 

Horseback Class

  •  20 dogs will compete in the National Finals Horseback class.
  • Entries will be accepted from handlers/dogs with points in the Open, Nursery, or Intermediate classes.
  • Competing in the Finals Horseback class will not require Intermediate teams to move to Open.
  • Entries will be accepted on a first come, first served basis (postmark date will be used) except that priority will be given to those handlers who have earned NCA points in a Horseback class during the qualifying year.

NCA Regional Finals

The NCA is divided into seven different regions (see table below), with each region hosting a Regional Final after the end of the qualifying year. Dates vary for each region, but they are all held between March 31 and the NCA National Finals in June.

 Handlers who are NCA members may earn points to qualify dogs for the NCA Regional Finals in the Open, Nursery, Intermediate, and Novice classes.

 Points for Regional Finals must have been earned at trials within that region and are accumulated from April 1 through March 31 of the qualifying year.

 Regional Finals Champions in the Open, Nursery, and Intermediate classes are automatically qualified for the NCA National Finals. (The Novice class is not offered at the National Finals.)

 If there are more than 10 dogs in a class at a Regional Finals, the Reserve Champion in that class is also automatically qualified for the National Finals.

 Handlers are limited to two (2) dogs per class in the Regional Finals.

  • Eligibility for the Nursery class is determined by the age of the dog.
  • Only dogs that are younger than 30 months (2.5 years) at the beginning of the qualifying year (April 1) are eligible to compete in the Nursery class for that year.
  • For the 2020-2021 qualifying year, Nursery eligible dogs must have been born after October 1, 2017.
  • Any handler may compete in the Nursery class.

General Information

  • The NCA qualifying year is April 1 thru March 31.
  • The NCA charges a sanctioning fee of $5 for each eligible dog or handler run in a NCA sanctioned class.
  • A class must have a minimum of four (4) dogs to receive points for that class.
  • Handlers must be NCA members before going to the post in order to earn points in any sanctioned class, but they do not need not be members in order to run in a sanctioned class.
  • NCA members competing in NCA sanctioned trials will be eligible to earn points for their dog(s) toward qualification for the NCA Regional Finals and the NCA National Finals.
  • Members are eligible to earn points beginning on the first day of their membership.
  • Because each trial is controlled by the individual trial host, not all NCA sanctioned classes may be offered at every trial.
  • Trials may include additional non-sanctioned classes such as Rancher, Pro-Novice, or Beginner. The qualifications for these classes are left up to the trial host.

Calculation of Trial Points

  • The top 30% of dogs in a class will earn points.
  • A class must have a minimum of 4 dogs to earn points.
  • NCA qualifying points will be calculated at the NCA office when the trial results are received.
  • Points are calculated based on the number of eligible dogs in the class, 30 points per dog.
  • First place in the class receives the full points available, with each dog below receiving 100 points less until no more points are available.

NCA National Finals

  • The National Finals will be held in June of each year.
  • Handlers who are NCA members may earn points to qualify dogs for the NCA National Finals in the Open, Nursery, and Intermediate classes in any NCA sanctioned trial held between April 1 and March 31 of that qualifying year.
  • Points earned during the qualifying year determine eligibility for the NCA National Finals.  
  • Handlers are limited to two (2) dogs per class.

The size of each class at Finals may fluctuate from year to year depending various factors. If you need more information about class sizes at the National Finals, please call a Board member for clarification.

 

Open Class

  •  50 dogs will compete in the National Finals Open class.
  • A handler may apply to compete in the National Finals Open class with any dog that has earned points in an Open class during the qualifying year.  – The 50 highest point earning dogs  entered will compete.

 

Nursery Class

  •  A handler may apply to compete in the National Finals Nursery class with any Nursery age dog that has earned points in a Nursery or Open class during the qualifying year. 
  •  The 30 highest point earning dogs entered will compete.
  • A qualified dog may compete in both the Open and Nursery classes.

 

Intermediate Class

  • 30 teams will compete in the National Finals Intermediate class. 
  • A handler may apply to compete in the National Finals Intermediate class with any eligible dog with which he/she has earned points in an Intermediate class during the qualifying year.
  •  The 35 highest point earning teams entered will compete.

 

Horseback Class

  •  20 dogs will compete in the National Finals Horseback class.
  • Entries will be accepted from handlers/dogs with points in the Open, Nursery, or Intermediate classes.
  • Competing in the Finals Horseback class will not require Intermediate teams to move to Open.
  • Entries will be accepted on a first come, first served basis (postmark date will be used) except that priority will be given to those handlers who have earned NCA points in a Horseback class during the qualifying year.

NCA Regional Finals

The NCA is divided into seven different regions (see table below), with each region hosting a Regional Final after the end of the qualifying year. Dates vary for each region, but they are all held between March 31 and the NCA National Finals in June.

Handlers who are NCA members may earn points to qualify dogs for the NCA Regional Finals in the Open, Nursery, Intermediate, and Novice classes.

Points for Regional Finals must have been earned at trials within that region and are accumulated from April 1 through March 31 of the qualifying year.

Regional Finals Champions in the Open, Nursery, and Intermediate classes are automatically qualified for the NCA National Finals. (The Novice class is not offered at the National Finals.)

If there are more than 10 dogs in a class at a Regional Finals, the Reserve Champion in that class is also automatically qualified for the National Finals.

Handlers are limited to two (2) dogs per class in the Regional Finals.

  • The Intermediate class is limited to handlers who are not competing in the Open class. 
  • Any dog may compete in the Intermediate class.
  • Unlike the Open and Nursery classes, where points are earned by the dog and may be transferred with the dog to a new owner or handler, in the Intermediate class points are awarded to the handler/dog team.
  • An Intermediate handler may acquire a dog of any level at any time during the qualifying year and make that dog part of his/her Intermediate team. However, once a dog is part of an Intermediate team, it must, during that qualifying year, be run only by that handler to maintain the Intermediate eligibility of that team.
  • The Intermediate team may compete in any class for which the dog is eligible, except Open.
  • At the end of a qualifying year, unless they attend and compete in the National Finals, the top two Intermediate point earning handlers are no longer eligible for the Intermediate class.
  • The Champion and Reserve Champion Intermediate handlers at the National Finals are no longer eligible for the Intermediate class.

General Information

  • The NCA qualifying year is April 1 thru March 31.
  • The NCA charges a sanctioning fee of $5 for each eligible dog or handler run in a NCA sanctioned class.
  • A class must have a minimum of four (4) dogs to receive points for that class.
  • Handlers must be NCA members before going to the post in order to earn points in any sanctioned class, but they do not need not be members in order to run in a sanctioned class.
  • NCA members competing in NCA sanctioned trials will be eligible to earn points for their dog(s) toward qualification for the NCA Regional Finals and the NCA National Finals.
  • Members are eligible to earn points beginning on the first day of their membership.
  • Because each trial is controlled by the individual trial host, not all NCA sanctioned classes may be offered at every trial.
  • Trials may include additional non-sanctioned classes such as Rancher, Pro-Novice, or Beginner. The qualifications for these classes are left up to the trial host.

Calculation of Trial Points

  • The top 30% of dogs in a class will earn points.
  • A class must have a minimum of 4 dogs to earn points.
  • NCA qualifying points will be calculated at the NCA office when the trial results are received.
  • Points are calculated based on the number of eligible dogs in the class, 30 points per dog.
  • First place in the class receives the full points available, with each dog below receiving 100 points less until no more points are available.

NCA National Finals

  • The National Finals will be held in June of each year.
  • Handlers who are NCA members may earn points to qualify dogs for the NCA National Finals in the Open, Nursery, and Intermediate classes in any NCA sanctioned trial held between April 1 and March 31 of that qualifying year.
  • Points earned during the qualifying year determine eligibility for the NCA National Finals.  
  • Handlers are limited to two (2) dogs per class.

The size of each class at Finals may fluctuate from year to year depending various factors. If you need more information about class sizes at the National Finals, please call a Board member for clarification.

 

Open Class

  •  50 dogs will compete in the National Finals Open class.
  • A handler may apply to compete in the National Finals Open class with any dog that has earned points in an Open class during the qualifying year.  – The 50 highest point earning dogs  entered will compete.

 

Nursery Class

  •  A handler may apply to compete in the National Finals Nursery class with any Nursery age dog that has earned points in a Nursery or Open class during the qualifying year. 
  •  The 30 highest point earning dogs entered will compete.
  • A qualified dog may compete in both the Open and Nursery classes.

 

Intermediate Class

  • 30 teams will compete in the National Finals Intermediate class. 
  • A handler may apply to compete in the National Finals Intermediate class with any eligible dog with which he/she has earned points in an Intermediate class during the qualifying year.
  •  The 35 highest point earning teams entered will compete.

 

Horseback Class

  •  20 dogs will compete in the National Finals Horseback class.
  • Entries will be accepted from handlers/dogs with points in the Open, Nursery, or Intermediate classes.
  • Competing in the Finals Horseback class will not require Intermediate teams to move to Open.
  • Entries will be accepted on a first come, first served basis (postmark date will be used) except that priority will be given to those handlers who have earned NCA points in a Horseback class during the qualifying year.

NCA Regional Finals

The NCA is divided into seven different regions (see table below), with each region hosting a Regional Final after the end of the qualifying year. Dates vary for each region, but they are all held between March 31 and the NCA National Finals in June.

Handlers who are NCA members may earn points to qualify dogs for the NCA Regional Finals in the Open, Nursery, Intermediate, and Novice classes.

Points for Regional Finals must have been earned at trials within that region and are accumulated from April 1 through March 31 of the qualifying year.

Regional Finals Champions in the Open, Nursery, and Intermediate classes are automatically qualified for the NCA National Finals. (The Novice class is not offered at the National Finals.)

If there are more than 10 dogs in a class at a Regional Finals, the Reserve Champion in that class is also automatically qualified for the National Finals.

Handlers are limited to two (2) dogs per class in the Regional Finals.

  • The Novice class is limited to handlers who are not competing in the Open class

  • Any dog may compete in the Novice class. 

  • Novice class points are awarded to the handler/dog team.

  • A Novice handler may acquire a dog of any level at any time during the qualifying year and make that dog part of his/her Novice team. However, once a dog is part of a Novice team, it must, during that qualifying year, be run only by that handler to maintain the Novice eligibility of that team.

  • Handlers cannot earn NCA points in both Intermediate and Novice.

  • If local associations allow handlers to run in both Novice and Intermediate classes, handlers are responsible for declaring to the NCA Office if they wish to have points posted in Novice or Intermediate. 

  • If the NCA Office receives points for Intermediate and Novice classes for a handler that did not declare Novice status, points will be posted to the Intermediate class only. If that occurs, a handler may not move down from Intermediate to Novice.

  • Handlers may move up from Novice to Intermediate at any time during the qualifying year.

  • A handler’s current level at the end of the qualifying year will determine their class eligibility for Regional Finals.

General Information

  • The NCA qualifying year is April 1 thru March 31.
  • The NCA charges a sanctioning fee of $5 for each eligible dog or handler run in a NCA sanctioned class.
  • A class must have a minimum of four (4) dogs to receive points for that class.
  • Handlers must be NCA members before going to the post in order to earn points in any sanctioned class, but they do not need not be members in order to run in a sanctioned class.
  • NCA members competing in NCA sanctioned trials will be eligible to earn points for their dog(s) toward qualification for the NCA Regional Finals and the NCA National Finals.
  • Members are eligible to earn points beginning on the first day of their membership.
  • Because each trial is controlled by the individual trial host, not all NCA sanctioned classes may be offered at every trial.
  • Trials may include additional non-sanctioned classes such as Rancher, Pro-Novice, or Beginner. The qualifications for these classes are left up to the trial host.

Calculation of Trial Points

  • The top 30% of dogs in a class will earn points.
  • A class must have a minimum of 4 dogs to earn points.
  • NCA qualifying points will be calculated at the NCA office when the trial results are received.
  • Points are calculated based on the number of eligible dogs in the class, 30 points per dog.
  • First place in the class receives the full points available, with each dog below receiving 100 points less until no more points are available.

NCA National Finals

  • The National Finals will be held in June of each year.
  • Handlers who are NCA members may earn points to qualify dogs for the NCA National Finals in the Open, Nursery, and Intermediate classes in any NCA sanctioned trial held between April 1 and March 31 of that qualifying year.
  • Points earned during the qualifying year determine eligibility for the NCA National Finals.  
  • Handlers are limited to two (2) dogs per class.

The size of each class at Finals may fluctuate from year to year depending various factors. If you need more information about class sizes at the National Finals, please call a Board member for clarification.

 

Open Class

  •  50 dogs will compete in the National Finals Open class.
  • A handler may apply to compete in the National Finals Open class with any dog that has earned points in an Open class during the qualifying year.  – The 50 highest point earning dogs  entered will compete.

 

Nursery Class

  •  A handler may apply to compete in the National Finals Nursery class with any Nursery age dog that has earned points in a Nursery or Open class during the qualifying year. 
  •  The 30 highest point earning dogs entered will compete.
  • A qualified dog may compete in both the Open and Nursery classes.

 

Intermediate Class

  • 30 teams will compete in the National Finals Intermediate class. 
  • A handler may apply to compete in the National Finals Intermediate class with any eligible dog with which he/she has earned points in an Intermediate class during the qualifying year.
  •  The 35 highest point earning teams entered will compete.

 

Horseback Class

  •  20 dogs will compete in the National Finals Horseback class.
  • Entries will be accepted from handlers/dogs with points in the Open, Nursery, or Intermediate classes.
  • Competing in the Finals Horseback class will not require Intermediate teams to move to Open.
  • Entries will be accepted on a first come, first served basis (postmark date will be used) except that priority will be given to those handlers who have earned NCA points in a Horseback class during the qualifying year.

NCA Regional Finals

The NCA is divided into seven different regions (see table below), with each region hosting a Regional Final after the end of the qualifying year. Dates vary for each region, but they are all held between March 31 and the NCA National Finals in June.

Handlers who are NCA members may earn points to qualify dogs for the NCA Regional Finals in the Open, Nursery, Intermediate, and Novice classes.

Points for Regional Finals must have been earned at trials within that region and are accumulated from April 1 through March 31 of the qualifying year.

Regional Finals Champions in the Open, Nursery, and Intermediate classes are automatically qualified for the NCA National Finals. (The Novice class is not offered at the National Finals.)

If there are more than 10 dogs in a class at a Regional Finals, the Reserve Champion in that class is also automatically qualified for the National Finals.

Handlers are limited to two (2) dogs per class in the Regional Finals.

  • Free membership in the NCA for handlers in their first year of competition in the Novice class. After the end of their first qualifying year, a membership must be purchased in order for the handler to continue to earn NCA Novice points. 

  • First year Novice handlers will earn Novice NCA points and will be eligible to compete in the Regional Finals at the end of the qualifying year.

  • If a first year Novice handler elects to compete in an Intermediate class, they will not lose any Novice points earned up to that point and will still be eligible to compete in the Regional Finals Novice class, so long as they have not declared for the Intermediate class before the end of the qualifying year.

  • If a first year Novice handler earns Intermediate points at a trial, they will need to declare in which class they wish to keep their points; they may not earn points in both Novice and Intermediate classes in the same qualifying year. They will be required to purchase a membership to earn points for the Intermediate class.

  • Like any other Novice handler, an first year Novice handler may move up to Intermediate at any time; however, once declared for Intermediate, they may not move back down to earn Novice points and they will lose the Novice points previously earned. 

  • The first year Novice program is retroactive to the beginning of the 2020-2021 qualifying year, with Novice points awarded to any new handlers who have competed in NCA trials after April 1, 2020.

General Information

  • The NCA qualifying year is April 1 thru March 31.
  • The NCA charges a sanctioning fee of $5 for each eligible dog or handler run in a NCA sanctioned class.
  • A class must have a minimum of four (4) dogs to receive points for that class.
  • Handlers must be NCA members before going to the post in order to earn points in any sanctioned class, but they do not need not be members in order to run in a sanctioned class.
  • NCA members competing in NCA sanctioned trials will be eligible to earn points for their dog(s) toward qualification for the NCA Regional Finals and the NCA National Finals.
  • Members are eligible to earn points beginning on the first day of their membership.
  • Because each trial is controlled by the individual trial host, not all NCA sanctioned classes may be offered at every trial.
  • Trials may include additional non-sanctioned classes such as Rancher, Pro-Novice, or Beginner. The qualifications for these classes are left up to the trial host.

Calculation of Trial Points

  • The top 30% of dogs in a class will earn points.
  • A class must have a minimum of 4 dogs to earn points.
  • NCA qualifying points will be calculated at the NCA office when the trial results are received.
  • Points are calculated based on the number of eligible dogs in the class, 30 points per dog.
  • First place in the class receives the full points available, with each dog below receiving 100 points less until no more points are available.

NCA National Finals

  • The National Finals will be held in June of each year.
  • Handlers who are NCA members may earn points to qualify dogs for the NCA National Finals in the Open, Nursery, and Intermediate classes in any NCA sanctioned trial held between April 1 and March 31 of that qualifying year.
  • Points earned during the qualifying year determine eligibility for the NCA National Finals.  
  • Handlers are limited to two (2) dogs per class.

The size of each class at Finals may fluctuate from year to year depending various factors. If you need more information about class sizes at the National Finals, please call a Board member for clarification.

 

Open Class

  •  50 dogs will compete in the National Finals Open class.
  • A handler may apply to compete in the National Finals Open class with any dog that has earned points in an Open class during the qualifying year.  – The 50 highest point earning dogs  entered will compete.

 

Nursery Class

  •  A handler may apply to compete in the National Finals Nursery class with any Nursery age dog that has earned points in a Nursery or Open class during the qualifying year. 
  •  The 30 highest point earning dogs entered will compete.
  • A qualified dog may compete in both the Open and Nursery classes.

 

Intermediate Class

  • 30 teams will compete in the National Finals Intermediate class. 
  • A handler may apply to compete in the National Finals Intermediate class with any eligible dog with which he/she has earned points in an Intermediate class during the qualifying year.
  •  The 35 highest point earning teams entered will compete.

 

Horseback Class

  •  20 dogs will compete in the National Finals Horseback class.
  • Entries will be accepted from handlers/dogs with points in the Open, Nursery, or Intermediate classes.
  • Competing in the Finals Horseback class will not require Intermediate teams to move to Open.
  • Entries will be accepted on a first come, first served basis (postmark date will be used) except that priority will be given to those handlers who have earned NCA points in a Horseback class during the qualifying year.

NCA Regional Finals

The NCA is divided into seven different regions (see table below), with each region hosting a Regional Final after the end of the qualifying year. Dates vary for each region, but they are all held between March 31 and the NCA National Finals in June.

Handlers who are NCA members may earn points to qualify dogs for the NCA Regional Finals in the Open, Nursery, Intermediate, and Novice classes.

Points for Regional Finals must have been earned at trials within that region and are accumulated from April 1 through March 31 of the qualifying year.

Regional Finals Champions in the Open, Nursery, and Intermediate classes are automatically qualified for the NCA National Finals. (The Novice class is not offered at the National Finals.)

If there are more than 10 dogs in a class at a Regional Finals, the Reserve Champion in that class is also automatically qualified for the National Finals.

Handlers are limited to two (2) dogs per class in the Regional Finals.

NCA Regions

CanadaHigh PlainsNorth EastSouth CentralSouth EastWest Coast
AlbertaColoradoConnecticutKansasAlabamaArizona
British ColumbiaIdahoDelawareNew MexicoArkansasCalifornia
ManitobaMontanaIllinoisOklahomaFloridaNevada
OntarioNebraskaIndianaTexasGeorgiaOregon
SaskatchewanNorth DakotaIowaLouisianaWashington
South DakotaKentuckyMississippi
UtahMaineNorth Carolina
WyomingMarylandSouth Carolina
MassachusettsTennessee
Michigan
Minnesota
Missouri
New Hampshire
New Jersey
New York
Ohio
Rhode Island
Vermont
Virginia
West Virginia
Wisconsin