So like in FMBB 2018 I will write here about my trip. I start from the top and every day add some new info at the end. So you just need to scroll 🙂
First of all, why I did come here? As most of people know Hawk has been quite difficult dog for me to compeat and train. Most of the problems have been seeable in obedience. Anyhow his nature has been calming down and in these continues searches of different training approaches I have managed to find some paths what lead better on. So in this year starts he has been better also in obedience. Of course it is not even close to this, what I have wanted to see, but at least better. As much as I got third place in Estonian IPO championships (and qualified) also with quite nice result I thought, that I should try. If I would get here in Italy B to something 83 -85, A and C over 90 I would be happy, as then I have managed to get maximum out of Hawk at the present stage. In my eye, if I really manage to get these points, then for sure it was good decision to come here. But, like you all know, Hawk is quite a mastepiece, who can create new challenges every step 🙂

Trip to Italy took 3 days (every day driving 10 – 12 hours) and 2300 km. I am happy, that I planned to be here on Saturday noon, as I really needed these Saturday trainings. Despite really warm weather the grass is here nice green. So the tracking fields for training are really easy and very similar to home fields. Training field, what I got was in the middle of forest a small piece of green. I made first track really easy and for me the only idea was to get Hawk energy out he has collected during 3 days in the car. I put some artickles, made 2 corners and one curve. Tracking look ugly. Ugly is even nice word to characterise the situation. Dog was moving too fast, making mistakes, checking not only in corners but also in straights etc. For sure the kind of movie, what will take your night sleep. After the track we went to training stadium. Here is so nice stadiums for training. Not just training fields, but several stadiums. For me it is so good, as it gives possibility to train more closer to the competition and so to get Hawk more close to the mood what makes problems for me. LIke tracking also the obedience was disaster. I did about 20 starts (nothing more) and all these starts dog thought, that now there will be sending out and he was flying in his own level.  Hell, I am doing just 1 time in spring sending out with some prize and every time I am in this point he gets crazy. Maybe I should do once of three years?  Anyhow Hawk got before totally tired than he understood, that there won’t be any sending out today.

Day two (sunday)

Again in the morning to tracking field and after obedience. In tracking I made two tracks. First as curve with ball in the end. In bases of yesterday I wanted him work more active to the ground. More power to the ground. As I cannot do much with food, it is only possibility. It worked nice. Second track was longer with 5 corners and 3 artickles and it went nice. Not ideal but much much better than yesterday. Need some more trainings for adjusting and it could be good.
Tracking was interesting in the way, that there is a lot of pheasants in the field. They make Hawk with their smell a bit crazy and for me it was interesting to see, do they eat all food from the track as at home crows. Seems that they do not eat the food in the same way, as most of it still was in the track. But it was fun with them.

In stadium I wanted to do nearly the same thing- starts and some heeling to the jumps and again to the start etc. Also some adjusting of Hawk state of mind in coming to the field stage. I must say, that also this was much better. Not ideal, but much better than yesterday. He was not so much of sending out anymore and even could use his brains in certain moments. For sure, I need some time more, but that’s why I am glad I came already Saturday.

Weather here is quite hot 30 degrees and over and there is a lot of moisture in the air. So when I walked first 100 steps in the tracking field I was all sweaty and seemed like there is not enough air to breath. Comparing to FMBB in spring were also was 30 degrees for me it seems more difficult somehow here. Probably because of the moisture.

Day three (monday)

So today was with trainings very similar to yesterday. First I went to tracking and did like yesterday one shorter with curve and ball in the end and second more serious. Today it looked very close to this, it should look. Of course always can be better, but it is close, what it was at home before the travel. So now I just need to look what draw I will take and in basis of this then make decision what day  and how I make some more tracking.

Next I moved to stadium. For my luck it was not too crowded and I got only in 1 hour waiting already to train. This was now the same stadium like saturday. There is somekind of magic with this stadium, as Hawk believes there so much more about that we just came to make sending out. Okey it was better, than first day, but not as good as yesterday. Anyhow I did full training making many starts and for sure no sending out 🙂 Also some aports to get him more calm in this element. In big picture I would say, that whole training went so and so. Not as good as I expected but also not too bad. Let’s see how the officials tomorrow look like. Today it was 32 degrees at 12 in the middle of day, when I trained and for sure it was too hot both for Hawk and also for me. Hopefully it will turn a little colder for competition.

So tomorrow are the vet control and official trainings. As I am this time like one man orchestra beeng in the same competitor, team leader and all the rest professions of the team also, for sure both vet control and training will be a little challenge. I have never been in such situation and would say, that interesting to see how it all works out. Anyhow I do not see problems right now and let’s see tomorrow.

By the way I give now two quick lessons about Italy also.

First. This thing in the picture is not ice cream, but gelato

It even tasted totally like gelato.

Second lesson is, that if you sometimes think that it just not possible, then you are wrong. It is always possible. I just saw on Saturday, how Audi A6 will be parked into the hole, where is 5 cm in the back and 10 cm in the front. And not a singel car was scratched and not a singel time any car touched the other. Here is two pictures characterising the final situation. So try at home to do some similar parking. I still think that it is not possible, but was some magic. Sorry, that the second photo is with so bad quality. But I took it after pizza and a beer and I was still shaking of the experience.

Day four in Italy vet check and official training.

Here the vet check was scheduled so, that every dog did it just before the official training and there was certain time for each group. I was in the same group (also in official raining ) with Brazil, Lebanon, South Korea, Luxembourg. I wanted to have breakfast also in morning and so I did not have much time, as breakfast opened just 08:00 and vet check was already 08:45 and I had 25 minutes drive. So I just went to breakfast before eight and eat what ever they had there. Everything run nice by time. I am in car already 08:10 and everything is just perfect. First Waze just jammed, then it took my cell with him and I was thinking hell I know where to drive. Then I managed to do restart and here I go and in first crossing find myself in morning traffic jam. In strange way there was not jams yesterday. Anyhow somehow I managed to move and I was at stadium 08:42. In the door of vet check they said to me, that I have three minutes left. I just thought better -3  than + 3 :). So not much time to walk the dog and make discussion about how he as grown up dog should behave in vet check.  Vet check was inside the building in small cabinets. I went in, Hawk was a bit energetic, but we managed to do all. Even really long discovering the chip.

Next planning of official training with all these 5 different countries in the same group. Well handled by the teamleader of Brazil, who wrote all down. I used small stones to play in the ground all through, who is moving where and when. It was fun 🙂 Could feel all this international spirit just before the official training. Earlier I probably would be quite nervous of all these things, as Hawk is demanding time for preparation and all such additional things are too much. But as I have been taking all this more chill up attitude, I enjoyed it like it is .

I did not do much before the entry, as I thought we have still ten minutes, it is too hot and we were just siting there and waiting. But then previous team ended 10 minutes earlier and we were called in. So I went there without any warming. Again prevously I would be really nervous about that nothing went by plan, but like I say you live just once and so you need to enjoy, what it brings 🙂

I was last dog doing obedience, so I could warm him up before a little and it went nice. All training went nice I think. I could even say, that it was one one of the best I have with Hawk in officials.  I did little heeling, both jumps and then couple of starts without sending out. It seems, that all these training here in different stadiums have helped to get Hawk to a little better mood. Of course there was things like barking in jumps and trying to jump over A frame and making salto after landing etc (as Hawk usual) , but in big picture I liked the training. I took a risk not running blinds and not sending out. I have managed to run blinds in several competitions nice. Also in Finnish Cacit, where I also did not run them n trainings. So even despite the problems in Slovenia in Spring I took the risk. Let’s see.

So on the evening is opening and draw and then we can rock and roll.
Here is picture after the training. It was hot and dog is tired. Sorry, that I am not in the picture as beside doinf teamleader job I do also the photographer job 🙂

Opening ceremony and drawing.

As much as I am both teamleader and competitor I needed to participate in teamleader meeting to get all necessary info. Between the meeting and the opening ceremony there was just 45 mintes, so I thought that I will go without the dog, as anyhow I do not have time to travel to hotel and back. In teamleader meeting was said, that everyone MUST have dogs, so I runned like hell, took dog directly from the room to car and then at the stadium directly to line flag in one hand and dog in another. Hell it was running and speeding. And then it was like nearly one hour waiting just standing until everyone are in the line etc. At least it is not boring. As had two hands and one carrying the flag and another dog and then there also came the ESTONIA sign, I was a bit out of hands. Anyhow friends from Spain came to help and took the flag and then organizers sent one person to help with sign. So we had such a international team – Italy having sing, Spain having the flag and I am with dog. When we were marching to stadium they said in loudspeakers, that now comes the Estonian team with three persons 🙂
Big thanks to the friends who helped me out. I am really thankful for this.

Draw is the moment, when all the competitors watch tightly catalogue and try to pick the best number. My approach is, that all the numbers are good number. At least with any number you can find something positive. So better to concentrate to these positive things not to negative ones. But the number I took was really good It is very similar like in FMBB this spring. I do first obedience, so I get the knowleage how it looks like and it takes some worries anyhow away. Then I have day off, I can make nice preparation for tracking and dog can rest. My start is in tracking very early. I need wake up around 04:00 and leave the hotel latest 05:00 to be in time in right place. But morning track is always better than afternoon 🙂

Bitework is in Sunday, so if necessary I can try to make some training in Friday after the tracking a on saturday. I think I should be happy.

First competition day. Obedience.

The ones who have been more closely looking my way with Hawk understand very well, that obedience is the part in IPO what has cracked and built again a lot of my nerves and also developed my brains. So first day and we will have fun in obedience. When I came here I thought, that if I get over 80 I would be glad and 83 – 85 is maximum I could dream about. I know that I have got several things better and I know that there is still a lot of sweat and blood to waist to get better.
Conditions for competition are difficult because of the heat. If I compear with Slovenia FMBB in spring, where was also same temperatures here seems the humidity much higher and it makes big difference. When I walk from hotel to car I am all sweat and smell like a big and it is just 100 steps. For me it seemed also, that the heat made for us also some difficulties in obedience. As Hawk was first in long down I noticed in aports and also recalls, that there was much less power then he usually has.  He had the same over burning energy, but there was less power.

I prepared Hawk much shorter than usually. Earlier it has been 20 – 30 minutes now I did just 5 as it was too hot and I was afraid to make more. I think that in big picture Hawk made better heeling. Of course it is long way from perfect, but it felt much better. In running parts we had problems but comparing to spring FMBB I would also say, that it was better. I am the fool, who forgot the stop in short leg of heeling. And I thought, that it is impossible to forget 🙂

Sit was ok, down was clearly slower and in my eye it was because he was tired. Stay was good, but stil some small steps. Recalls were a little slower but nice ending parts  In aports he was barking, but also less than previously also he was chewing less. But like I said, there was less power in jumps. In sending out he had better contact in heeling but slower in down. But how in hell the lay down can be better, if I do not train it. As Hawk is burning in every start, that now there is sending out and that is also one reason of the healing problems I do very little sending outs and so there is also very little down commands. I could make them more, but then I would have much more serious problems in heeling.

I would say, that I had the same kind of problems of drive, as I usually have, but they were better. Clearly I have seen, that all this season has been going to better direction. But I had problems what came with heat. I do not blame the heat, as it is all the same for all and dogs should work in every weather, but as I am analysing I see, that it had effect. In the end it was 83 points and I am really satisfied. Tomorrow short tracking training and then Hawk can rest and I go to mountains to chill up and make some photos.

6-th day in Italy. Quick change in training plans.

Like I wrote I had a plan to make one track and then give a rest to the dog and drive to the mountains chill up. I went to track and put about 400 steps track with 4 corners and two artickles. Hawk did such a perfect track. It was just super. So I thought, that if today will be full day resting, it could be easily that he will have tomorrow too much energy and then he will be unstable in track. I need my dog for tomorrow competition in the same level, as he was today. So I decided to drive to training field to make some blind search. As on of the organisers came to help me as he was helper, I even got some barking and bitework done. Somehow in the field Hawk doesn’t look at all tired and did his bad crazy things he likes to do. So in the end I was happy, I did this bitework training as it will probably help also for sunday. Tomorrow after tracking I probably will do some blind search more. Tracking will be interesting as there is very different kind of fields. Some of them have ditches in the field and dog needs to track through. It would be interesting to see, how Hawk will solve it. Anyhow tomorrow 04 morning rise let’s see how it will look like.

7-th day  in Italy – tracking.

Here you see the view from today tracking fields. Can’t be much better 🙂

I got in tracking same pints as in obedience (83) but funny way, they have totally different taste 🙂
I rised up very early to be at time in place. It was little more than hour drive to the meeting point.  Organisers said, that there is need to be 1 hour earlier. As draw was already 1 hour earlier I asked about should I come +1 hour more early and got yes. Anyhow we somehow mistalked as I was there 1 hour too early. One hour waiting, then 1,5 hour more, as I took last track in the group. Hawk had nice time to put his motor running. I did my best, but anyhow I felt he was running much higher than I would like to. As scedual was more than 10 minutes ahead I did not have enough time to prepare Hawk. I do not blame, as I could also just take this time and that’s it. But I needed so much a little privat conversation with him to use some not so beautiful words to tell him take the motor little down. As there was not such place I just went to raport with motor sound running high. Raport was also quite long as judge wanted to chat with all people . For Hawk it was too long discussion as it wa slike keeping handbrake and leting wheels run full power.

The start was nice he worked deep nose and active. He did just two mistakes checking in one point about 1 meter away and slicing about 2-3 meters one corner. all the rest was quite ok. He worked much more nose down than usually in such mood. Also after corners he did not speed as much as usually but he was active. To get high points in this competition there is need to go step by step checking all steps and beeng more calm. The starts from artickles should be also calmer. BUT, on last artickle he took it again to mouth. So damn, I lost 7 points on that. I am not so mad about these 7 points than about the problem, as I thought it was solved already as meanwhile it was okey in competitions. So 7 points is a lot to give away and today it was 83.

After I went to train some blind search and I would say it looked today much better than yesterday. Tomorrow Hawk will have day off and I will be most likely in stadium.

To use famous words from the well known movie – „Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you will get“. I did in Estonian IPO championships 265 points and as I was thinking after, it was quite of maximum I could make at the moment as nearly all succeeded in the level Hawk could to at the moment. Then I took the travel to Italy to FCI IPO WC and somehow I thought that I will do the same or even more. Today I understand, that it was a little optimistic thought as it is so big difference with compeating at home or travelling 3 days, living a week in hotel and having all the time 30 + temperatures with high humidity.

For me the choclate box was funny this time, as I got highest points of all three disciplines in obedience, what has been with Hawk total nightmare. I did in obedience the same points as in Estonian championships and I am so so happy about it. Tracking was close to the maximum, but I lost 7 points for artickle . For sure I am unhappy, that the old problem came out again, not having it in several competitions meanwhile. Bitework looked nice with grips, clean transition phases and even a little better out s in some parts, but the control was really much worse than ever. Total result 83 + 83 + 80 =246 It is not high score and like I said, I expected more.

Anyhow I can say, that I am satisfied. I am not saying, that it is good experience again, as I already have a lot of different experiences, but I would say, that in all three disciplines there was a lot of positive things what made me happy , but there was also negative things I need to solve out.

I clearly see, that for Hawk the temperature is problem. As always been as he is quite big and he somehow cannot handle the temperature. We also had 30 degrees at home most of the summer, but it is not compareable. Here the humidity is so high, that just coming out of shower and taking fist steps out the hotel there is need to go to shower again as you are all sweat. I clearly see, that physical training for Hawk could be better for such a temperature. Because of my knee I could not do it much and also I had lack of time as I concentrated so much to different disciplines and so I was out of time.

My plan for this year was 4 big IPO competitions – two of them world championsips (FMBB and FCI) + two cacit competitions. In the end of this 4 competition trip I should say, that I am satisfied. A lot of things have been better this year, than they were last year and in this row I should be happy also with the result in FCI IPO WC.

I was really happy I came here, as it was bigest ever hold FCI IPO WC and it was so well organised. So being part of it is so good feeling. Thanks to all organisers for such a big work what was done with heart. Also I would like to thank people who helped me at home to prepare and train to the competition. Also thanks to everyone who ha sbeen cheering and liking here