By Mark Laker
2019 will likely go down in international agility history as the year the European Open was run at night. With day time temperatures in the high 30’s a decision was made to start the competition at 7pm and run until to midnight. Then start at 5am the following day and run until 10:30am. After that it was too hot for dogs and humans to be doing agility.
Team GB rose to the challenge of the disrupted time table and ended up having one of our most successful EO’s ever.
Our focus this year has been on improving consistency. Our results demonstrated we’ve done exactly that.
5th places in all three individual events (S,M & L). The highest place’s we’ve ever achieved in the small and medium height categories.
All three large teams made the team relay final – we’ve never achieved that before either, with one team finishing 5th overall.
Ex-juniors and handlers from the development programme in the placed teams and individual placing.
All these results show we’re improving across all three height categories and our various programmes are bringing competitive dogs and handlers through to the adult teams. Of course when we’re looking at elite performance against the best in the world, there are always improvement opportunities. However, I’m encouraged that despite the challenges of this year’s championships, the team performed exceptionally well, supported each other, remained upbeat and were well prepared for the courses the judges set.
Another highlight was the handing over of the EO flag to the UK. We host the championships in 2020 which is a really exciting prospect.
UK Team Manager