Paul, I would not reccomend pushing that pup. At your pups age they are completely vulnerable to what ever that pack decides to do on that given day. This could be a good thing or not. Have you thought about if that cast decides to run off game such as a deer ect.. Your pup probaly will not get much scent on a rabbit in that pack especially this time of year, but on a full blown speed beef chase (Mr. Whitetail) he's gonna love that! Heck he'll probaly even pick up a few checks on that line. All kidding aside Paul, it's just to risky running that pup now. Solo him if he can run a line by himself. Watch for signs of too much independence, if this happens throw a old dog in with him to keep that pack mentality strong. He will need all these skills to perform in P.P. See how that dog looks at 1.5-2 yrs of age as Leo said. That old Kentucky rabbit hunter knows a few things about these trials. Just have patience and keep that dog in the field, you can't go wrong if you do both of those!
May GOD bless you and your hound this year!
Scott Johnson