As our 2018 agility season gets tantalisingly closer, we wanted to have a quick catch-up with two of our big winners from last year!
Natasha Chambers and Terry Wallbank were the winners of the medium and small (respectively) categories of our thrilling Agria Brillo Bounce finals.
Alongside our many Agria Agility classes, a real highlight for us in 2017 was the Agria Brillo Bounce competition. The event is designed to showcase the talents of small and medium agility dogs, with qualifying heats running throughout the year, culminating in the finals that, this
year, were held at British Agility Championships in Bedfordshire.
As well as the glory of being crowned the Agria Brillo Bounce winners of 2017, the dogs and handlers in the finals were competing for a well-earned rest in the shape of £250 towards a break with DogFriendly!
Natasha and Terry told us a bit about them and their day at the Agria Brillo Bounce finals…
1. Tell us about your dogs!
Natasha: My dog is called Indie, Northfen Indie Go Go and she is a four and a half-year-old Border Collie x Shetland Sheepdog, who started competing at about 18-months-old.
My proudest agility moment so far was being able to compete in the Olympia semis held at KCI this year. Maybe in 2018 we’ll achieve our ultimate goal and qualify for the Olympia Finals!
Terry: Bailey is a four-year-old Jack Russell Terrier who has been competing for three years. He’s my first agility dog and is a rescue from Evesham Greyhound and Lurcher Rescue. Bailey had a toe amputated when he was two.
2. How was your day at the Agria Brillo Bounce finals?
Natasha: The day was really good. I especially enjoyed the courses and the atmosphere of the whole show. Everyone was so relaxed and friendly, it didn’t feel like a competition at all. We were competing in the British Champs all weekend too, so to be able to compete in the Agria Brillo Bounce Finals was just amazing.
The two qualifying rounds were a little rocky for us, so I knew we had to pull it out of the bag in the final. Luckily for us everything just fell into place and it went smoothly. It felt amazing to work together and be able to win it.
Terry: Although we have qualified for the Agria Brillo Bounce finals before, we have never made it to the final run so this was an exciting first for us.
We had a great day at the finals and really enjoyed the grounds and the arena itself. I’m always happy with how Bailey runs for me and was glad I didn’t let him down.
3. Have you decided where to go on your DogFriendly break?
Natasha: Not yet. We don’t go on holiday much because we don’t like leaving the dogs, so I’m really looking forward to being able to take my dogs with me and having a lovely time away.
Terry: We haven’t yet decided where to go but will probably use it towards a week at Dogs in Need next August.
4. What are your plans over the winter?
Natasha: Our winter training plan will be to keep focusing on improving the bits that we struggle with and to crack down on tightening our turns up.
Terry: We’ve been busy since Agria Brillo Bounce competing at the UKA Finals in the team tournament, where we came 5th, CSJ UK Agility Grand Prix, where we finished 2nd and the Masters Final. We also competed at Olympia. Competing in such a prestigious agility event was an experience that we will remember and cherish for a long, long time.
5. After such a busy year, how do your dogs like to relax?
Natasha: Nothing is more relaxing to Indie than hanging out on the sofa and having cuddles.
Indie is a once in a lifetime kind of dog and she’s given me so much more than I could ever have imagined already.
Terry: Bailey loves nothing better than chasing rabbits. If he gets the scent in a hedgerow it is very difficult to call him out! But when he gets home, he loves to climb on my lap, tuck his head under my arm and sleep. I feel proud and lucky to have a great mate in Bailey. And after such a brilliant year, I now must think of how I can repay Bailey for being so clever.
Huge congratulations to you both, we can’t wait to see you on the 2018 Agria agility circuit!