Hmmmm well where to start...
Firstly we nearly never made it at all. The short story is that I had major problems with my car the day before we were due to leave which meant I had no car to drive! We ended up having to hire a car and change the time of the ferry so that we had time to pick up and pack said hire car. It was a huge relief when we finally made it to the venue in Belgium late Wednesday evening.
Racing started on Friday with the lower divisions in temperatures of around I think 36 degrees, I literally felt like I was melting! Saturday was slightly cooler and we spent most of the day supporting the other british teams entered (as we did on friday). Friday and Saturday evening were good fun with everyone in good spirits and lots of Belgian beer.
Sunday soon came around with Asher racing with High Flyers in Division 1. The rest of the team were Maizie, Floss, Millie, Tanner and Badger although it was a great shame that Badger wasn't able to compete due to him still recuperating from his injury. I thought the team gelled well together and I really enjoyed doing changeovers on Maizie although I don't think my starts were so good! In speed trials we managed a fantastic best time of 16.62secs which put us as 2nd seed for the double elimination. We won our 1st two double elimination races putting us in to the semi-finals but unfortunately lost to Jolly Jumpers (who had broken the European record with 16.12secs earlier in the day). Our last race was against K-otic Flyers who we had beaten in the previous race. By this point in the day they were just a little too much for us and we lost but still came a fantastic 3rd in the division which meant we got on to the podium. Jolly Jumpers won with K-otics coming 2nd. I thought all the dogs ran well. I was really proud of Asher he tried so hard in every one of the 8 races and I have never seen him so tired as he was afterwards!
I thought the racing format was brilliant, racing was so exciting! The support between all the british teams was great. I also really enjoyed watching all the other european teams and how they did things, it was all very interesting. Overall a fantastic experience.
Big thanks to High Flyers for letting Asher run with them and making me part of the team. Thanks to Katie for putting up with my panic on the tuesday, keeping me company for the looong journey, bringing our good mate Tim and generally being a fab holiday buddy. Thanks to Jeanette for having Asher on the Saturday so that he could relax in the van rather than stressing himself out being tied up and to Nat for lending us the tent! Finally thanx to all the british teams who were around the ring supporting us.
Ooh and congratulations Jolly Jumpers :-)
Here is a vid of some teams competing, we are in the 1st clip, Asher is 2nd dog:
10 months ago