Friday, 30 September 2011

WC Live Video Link for 7th/8th/9th Oct 2011

Hello, just a quick blast of useful information!

I have been asked a lot about how to watch the World Championships & at training this week I promised that I would load up the link for the live online TV service, so anyone wishing to watch the championships they can do online for a small fee.

Please click the link and follow the instructions. Use the British Flag for English Language: 

Hope this is useful.

This weekend I am art Chippingham show, in the lovely British sunshine! I will report back on what we managed to do on Monday, although I wont be running very much this weekend if Im honest.

Enjoy the sunshine!


Thursday, 29 September 2011

Dutch Seminars & Shows in Belgium


Here is my new update!
Last Wednesday evening (21st) I set off along with Anthony Clarke and Sian Illingworth to drive up to Holland.

Anthony & Myself were due to give a 6 hour seminar on the Thursday, starting at 9am. For some reason we had decided it would be a good idea to drive over night, aiming to arrive around 2am.. However this was never a realistic target, and we actually arrived at 7am!!!

After a 1hour power nap, Ant & I got up and started the training sessions. We were at Carl De Rouck & Marielle Bugel’s training venue, which was lovely and also a little windy, which helped freshen us up a bit!

The day was focused on pull through and turns, handler positioning & timing and straight line selection. The handlers on the course were great and they worked very hard to improve on the areas we were focusing on. Also we managed to cope with the lack of sleep okay, we were very happy at the end of the day with how it had gone.
Here is one of my students vidoe from the day: (Click link to play)

On the Friday we did 2 sessions again, with different students. The weather was lovely for the two days and once training was finished, we drove south west back to Gent  in Belgium where were staying at the F1 hotel, ready for 2 shows that ran over the weekend.

The hotel was, shall we say basic. It was fairly cheap, but felt like more a offenders hostel than a hotel. It did the job though and we were fairly centrally placed for the two competitions.

Over the two shows we all had some fantastic results, between us gaining several wins, seconds & thirds. One of the wins was Scotty on the Sunday in Agility class 3. I was very happy with the results but more so the courses that we got were great preparation for the WC. Saturdays even had a table in it, and Sundays had the Frame tyre (the type that we don’t get in UK).
Here is a video of the best bits from all of our runs over the weekend: (Click link to play)
A big thank you to everyone who helped us organise the trip and was so nice to us whilst we were there, especially Birthe Verhaert who did a lot of organising for us.

On the evenings we went into Gent itself, which was a lovely city. We ate some lovely food and enjoyed the culture.

The drive back was long, I arrived back at home at 3am. On the Monday Greg, Anthony & Myself met up to train again for the Worlds. It was a good session but we did do some hard sequences. The weather this week has been very hot, so I am not doing to much with even my lessons, let a lone my own dogs.
This weekend is Chippingham show. I am going but not sure how much I will run with the WC so close, il only do the odd training round this weekend & maybe the Champ class.
Well done to Jenny Goude for coming 2nd in the ProPlan final, and well done to Barry & Kip for coming 2nd in the Alpha Agility Final. Yet more great results from my students this year, I am very proud of you all. Well done.
Okay, work to do now. Speak soon.


Tuesday, 20 September 2011

NIreland Judging & Training

NI Judging & Training

Last Friday I flew out from Birmingham to Belfast for the weekend. I was due to judge at a show on the Saturday, and conduct a training seminar on the Sunday.

The forecast for the weekend was not particularly great; in fact it was very wet and windy. I decided that although I normally dress up smart to judge, it was better to do a good job and be warm, than to look smart and to be cold!

I judged 1-3agility, 4-7 agility, 1-5agility and 6&7 agility. The last course of the day I built was one of my courses I have used before in Norwary. (I also used it at Dog Vegas this year) and it was better if you could send your dog to the weave, rather than take it into the weave. It made for a great atmosphere and the handlers enjoyed the challenge.

On the Sunday I did 2 x 3hours of training sessions. The first group was more advanced, whilst the second group consisted of slightly less experienced dogs.

I focused on efficiency in handling and also how to shape / que turns before the dog became airborne over jumps. Another feature of the training was weave entries, and how to a) teach your dog to find them b) how to handle and mentally approach the training of weave entries c) the progression and isolation of skills associated with weave entries.

The afternoon group were keen to learn motivational skills and how to stay connected with their dog whilst handling on the course. There were in fact several examples of the dog and handler ‘splitting’ but we managed to do some good work to maintain a consistent and effective handling style.

Thanks to everyone who organised and attended the seminars. I enjoyed my weekend judging & training.

This week is busy again. Wednesday I travel with my friend Anthony Clarke to do a 2 day joint seminar in Holland, followed by a show in Ghent (Belgium) over the weekend as preparation for the World Champs that are just around the corner!

So it is more days on the road before the final countdown to the FCI World Championships. Exciting times.


Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Update September 15th


So I have some training news firstly, the training day I am doing with Marc Saunders on October 22nd is now full for the morning session and has one space left in the afternoon session.

It is great to get such a good response.. Marc and I have a reserve list and are trying to find another date when we can do another training day. I am sure we will find something.

Last weekend I was at Gillingham show, it was a rather eventful show but for mostly the wrong reasons. There was an incident that would not have looked out of place on the school play ground! It did not involve me though I am happy to say.

I managed to get into the Championship final, but the final course seemed to catch everyone out, only 4 clears out of 20.. (I was not one of them!) Well done to Sian Illingworth for winning with Eddie.

Sunday I managed to make mis-timings with my handling and made silly refusals, but after some rough weather and strong winds I was pleased to leave the show. I ran Zed the Kelpie in the last jumping but still didn’t manage a clear. I have been running him in recent weeks, and done quite well with 3 wins and a 2nd.

Today I had a lot of lessons. Monday & Tuesday the weather made it impossible to train outside. Tuesday night was the start of the winter indoor classes which went really well. Anyone interested in joining please email me

I have just received the running orders for the World Champs: They can be seen at the website below.

It is not that far now. I am getting quite excited looking forward to France & being part of Team GB.

Picture from the EO Austria July 2011

This weekend I am heading off to Belfast to Judge at a show on Saturday, and conduct a training seminar on the Sunday. I will fly from Birmingham on Friday, and return on Sunday evening.
Hope everyone has a good weekend.

"Some people come into our lives and quickly go. Some stay for a while, leave footprints on our hearts, and we are never, ever the same"  ~ Flavia Weedn, Forever, ©

Friday, 9 September 2011

Training news inc: Marc Saunders & Lee Gibson Training Day Saturday 22nd October


So two updates in a week, im getting better at this now. Today I am leaving for Gillingham Champ show. Its a long drive and the forecast is, shall we say not the best, but we will give it ago!

I have some training news. The Indoor LGT classes start next Tuesday. If you are interested and have not recieved my email, please contact me for details.

For all my blog followers, here is the first public announcement of a super joint training event which see's LGT & Phaze2training coming together in the south of England.

Marc Saunders & Lee Gibson Training Day Saturday 22nd October

Performance enhancement & building consistency in your handling system:

This is a super opportunity to work with two of the country’s top handlers and judges as they work through a serious of exercises and techniques that will give you focus and structure to enhance elements of your handling.

The day will be aimed at improving aspects of your handing & consistency working with your dog on some complex and challenging sequences. The training will be of high intensity, but will also be presented in a fun & enthusiastic manner!

Key points of the day –

·         Handling techniques

·         Decision making & winning line selection

·         Front cross & rear cross execution / selection

·         Timing skills

Held at:

Forest farm,

Forest road,



RH12 4SZ

Spaces are available for the morning or afternoon. Sessions split into teams of up to 5 dogs & handlers working for 2 x 1.5hour sessions.

9.30pm – 12.30pm - Grades 3, 4 & inexperienced grade 5

1.30pm – 4.30pm – Grades experienced 5, grades 6&7

Each space will cost £30, if you wish to work 2 dogs (one in morning & one if afternoon) then a discount of 15% will be included on the cost of each of your spaces. The total cost would be £51 for a space in both sessions.

The spaces will be allocated on a first come first serve basis.

Please note:

Contact pieces will be used but it is advised that you have a fairly reliable contact method or are prepared to focus on other aspects, as the aims of the day will not specifically focus on the training / retraining of contact methods.

Same handler must work both sessions in order to obtain 15% discount.

I will update after this weekends competiton. Hope everyone has a great weekend.

Monday, 5 September 2011

A long time coming - a huge update!

Long Overdue Blog Update!

There is something I cannot work out.. when I return home on a Sunday night and have a quick breeze through my emails and Facebook.. I see everyone manages to get their runs from the weekend loaded on to the net and Youtube in no time.. how is this possible?? If it wasn’t for my friends videoing Fife and Wyre, I would not have either of Scott’s Championship ticket wins on film.

I have so many runs to edit and put online.. I just don’t get time to do it! But I will get it done... I promise!

As for my latest news blog.. well that is more like a memorial to the Summer time than news from the last week or so.

The month of August has been so action packed its been crazy.. in fact it all started back in July when our team set off for the European Open in Bad Hall Austria.

The European Open (29th / 30th / 31st July):

After a 12 hour mammoth drive of over 1000 miles we arrived at the team hotel which was very nice with good facilities. Well done to the KC for organising such a good hotel.

The EO was a bizarre event. It should be so good yet the way it is organised leaves a lot to be desired. The ground was wet, but not as bad as I have seen before. What happened was that there was too many classes/dogs to run before the finals in the evening. It ended up with the final being under flood lights that, well for the main part didn’t work and in the lashing rain. A real none event.

As for our team on day one, we were unlucky. The faults were mainly lots of silly poles and small errors in the individuals. Jack was C and C in his two runs, I just could not do the times with Jack as he is 9 now. I was close to making the final anyhow, and was happy with my runs.

Jack was 85th in individual Agility round & 43rd in jumping (36,39 seconds) out of 350 of the best dogs from around the world, I am very happy with that result.

Jack was the highest placed of all the team GB dogs in the jumping large class. The Sunday I also ran two Clear rounds with Jack. He was 100% and had a brilliant record at the EO, so I was very pleased with how I performed for team GB.

Kingdom of Fife Championship Show:

On the weekend of the 6th & 7th of August, we went up to Dundee along with Ceri and David who also had entered the championship class up there. It was a nice show but a very long drive up there.

I was running first in the championship agility round and knocked the spread down. In the jumping I was third which ment I was running the final at number 16. I like the course and knew Scott could do a good round. I was able to run Scott really flowing and we held it together, winning our first CC and qualifying for Crufts 2012.

Well done to Ceri for winning G6 Agility on the Sunday. This was to be the first of 2 wins for Ceri in August

Kennel Club International Festival (12th/13th/14th August)

This show is always a favourite of mine throughout the year, mainly because of the range of courses and foreign judges that come over.

In the British Open class, I had a jumping and agility round to try and make the final. In the jumping, I had a nightmare round, knocking 2 poles down and leaving us without a score after round one. This is something I think I am particularly good at these days.. Learning after a set back how to respond and come back from it. IO knew I needed a top 5 agility place, and set about getting it as I wanted to make the British Open final and try and qualify for Crufts.

The agility round was a good course, judged by the Italian judge. I had a game plan on how Scott was going to get his place, and we nailed it. Scott actually came 4th, and lucky for me I did as that gave me 47 points, 46 points didn’t make the cut for the final!

I had a few other classes but mainly trained ready for the final. This was a testing but fun course. Scott and I were of course early to run in it having scraped in, but Scott ran it brilliantly and was leading for the most part of the 35 dog final. David Alderson & Shaun Young just piped me (well done guys, really great runs), but I was thrilled with my 3rd place finish, taking us to Crufts on the Thursday as well as the Championship class on the Sunday!
(Photo thanks very much to Ian Watts)

Scott also had a 2nd place in the EO qualifier class on Sunday, this was a super run and I was very pleased about how well he ran it.

On a sadder note, our thoughts should go to Don Nun, who sadly passed away at the KC festival. You will be missed by all of us in agility.

DINAS (16th – 21st August)

Dogs in need is always a fun show, with as much emphasis on social and having fun as on agility. I wanted to qualify for the DINAS finals and Scott managed this by finishing second in the grade 7 league at the end of the week.

On the Tuesday was large dog Championship class, I made the final but one really silly bit of handling cost me about .7 of a second, and another slightly wide turn about.4, meaning I finished 4th in the final. I was still happy, apart from my mistakes, the run was sweet.

Scott won both DINAS agility 7 qualifiers, and had a 4th in Jumping. He also won another agility class on none qualifier day.

In the final, I had to beat a fantastic time set by Dawn Weaver. I was pushing hard and had a somewhat dubious call of 5 on the seesaw. It was one of those 50/50 shouts, and as I always say if you give the judge a decision to make, then you can only look at yourself for giving them that decision to make. If we had planted the seesaw, no fault. With the time I had I would have been 2nd so I was very pleased.

Wyre Championship Show (28th August)

From the 25th of August I was staying up at Dog Vegas show, where I judged Friday and competed Saturday. On the Sunday after much deliberation due to the weather at Wyre, we (Dave Russell and Jess) decided to drive across to Lancashire and take part in the Championship class.

Scott had a good jumping round, finishing 2nd and in the agility round, finished 3rd. I was happy with my runs and was confident going into the final, which had some great dogs and handlers in it.

I was last to run in the final, and it was being won by Karen Marriot with Puzzle. This dog is seriously fast and has stunning running contacts. So I knew we had to be on top of our game and also had to push in the right places. I nearly over did it on one turn (you will see on the video) but got away with it (just!). Scott crossed the line in 36.0.. something.. and Scotty had won his second Championship ticket. He needs just one more now to be agility Champion.

Olympia Semi final (2nd September)

Last Friday I had the semi-final for Olympia at Christmas. I have been lucky that Rory, Che & Jack have all competed there before, but it has been a few years since I have been so I was desperate to get back there.

In the warm up event Scott flew up and off the end of the seesaw. The run was fine but I did some contact training as I was sure that just a clear would be enough to qualify.

In the actual semi-final, I was number 20 to run. There had been a handful of clears but I was confident Scott would work the course well. He did a really controlled yet quick run, with a time of 33.02 and put me into 2nd place which was great, as I knew I would not be knocked out the qualifying places. Anthony Clarke & Andy Sandercock were second and first respectively. Well done to you and also everyone else who has qualified. Scott finished 3rd. A good days work!

Prestbury Park (3rd / 4th September)

I was a little disappointed not to make the Championship final, but in all honesty I have had such a good few weeks that I’m really happy and confident in my handling and Scott’s ability right now. We had a pole and a brick out the wall in jumping round, and along jump and a pole in Agility round, despite the quickest time, we didn’t make the final!

Instead I was Anthony’s groom whilst he ran both dogs in the final. On Sunday, Scott won a 6&7 agility class, and Jack had a 4th in g7 agility. Jack has been resting for most of this month after the EO and all the travel etc.

So that brings us all up to date! I have never written over 1500 words for a blog post before, but I guess if I hadn’t left it so long I wouldn’t need to write so much!

One more piece of good news for me. Scott will now be running Individuals and team at the FCI World Championships in France in October. Sadly Dave Leach has had to withdraw, and of course I didn’t want it to come about in those circumstances, I have now got the Individual chance that I felt Scott deserved all along and I don’t think too many people would disagree with that.

I am very much focused on the WC2011 now.. just over a month to go!

Thanks for reading


Thank you to Candice Robinson and Amy Lawson for the photo's. Thanks to Jess Coffee for the vidoe from the Championship final at Wyre.