It is said that you should reach for the stars, and that you are successful even if you only lift a bit above the ground! But … At the 2001 WC in Portugal we did actually reach the stars! To win GOLD at the WC is of course fantastic and no one can take it away from us!
The preparation for the 2001 WC began a year earlier, after the WC in Finland. It was the first year we participated in a WC and the first time we had the possibility to really check our nerves and compare ourselves with the rest of the world. To represent Sweden in a competition together with all the best agility handlers in the world was a great feeling. I took the task very seriously. We contributed with two clean runs in the team, which also was my aim. Individually I realized that it was not enough to play safe. After a clear run in jumping we were placed 29th and then ready to take a bigger risk in the agility run. We did, but Lotus missed the down contact on the dog walk. Without that mistake we would have climbed to a 9th place. With this experience I went back to Sweden, and started to make plans…
In order to win a World championship I had learned that I couldn’t hold back. I had to give all. I also understood that I must believe in myself and that the contacts had to be perfect.
Irené Stjärnås, the coach of the national team, organized so that we had the opportunity to practice mental training and positive thinking in order to perform as well as possible.
I changed training method for the contacts. I came to the conclusion that it must be possible to find a way that would make the dog really understand to hit the contacts! My goal was to transform the contacts to the best place in the world!
A year later it was time to go to Portugal and to represent Sweden in the national team for the second time.
I had written down important, good and positive things that I wanted to remember during the competition days. My own preparations along with a huge support from our Swedish supporters made me very excited. We went out on the course and ran exactly as we used to and we gave everything! After a clear run, we ended up in 6th place, now I had nothing to loose, we just to make a go for it once again.
While waiting for the individual agility run I tried to focus on the right and positive things all the time. As always Lotus gave me positive energy and when the Swedish mini team won a BRONZE medal and we danced a victory dance it gave me even more power! So when I stood there on the starting line and was faced with the final run I felt like Muhammad Ali J. We were ready to fight! The run was perfect. I sent Lotus on to the dog walk the second to last obstacle, the ultimate test of my contact training… He sped over it, ran all the way down and further over the last obstacle! This success gave me such a huge satisfaction all we had to do now was to wait and see how far it would take us…
It turned out that we had won! Everyone came running, it felt so unreal but fantastic!
Lotus and I were the best in the world!