In conversation with Sandrine Farr
Last year was a fantastic year for Sue Rolfe. Her youngest daughter Emma gave birth to a second grand-daughter and her eldest daughter Sara got married. Agility-wise there were many achievements which culminated in winning the Pedigree Agility stakes at Olympia 2004, possibly the most important agility final in the UK, if not Europe. She gave this interview to Sandrine Farr after she had won the Pedigree Agility Stakes at Olympia 2004 for her club's newsletter. Hers is an inspirational success story.
SUE: Have realistic goals. On the day keep calm and try to focus on doing the things you've been doing through the winter, like the set pieces you've practised in training. If things go wrong, don't get cross with your dog it's probably your fault, work the rest of the course and learn from your mistake. If you don't compete very often, you'll be very nervous on the day and just walking the course and remembering the course can be very daunting. What I can say is that is that the more you get out there and compete the easier it becomes. Honest!
SANDRINE: What do you think of all the changes happening in Agility at the moment?
SUE: What I love about the sport is that it's fair. If you do the fastest clear round you win, it doesn't matter what your dog looks like or how stylishly it performs. In a sport you will always get winners and losers. If you change things too much to make progression more accessible to all, you might lose the competitive edge that makes agility exciting and produces top handlers and dogs. What Kes has achieved this year was difficult and therefore very, very special.
Sue wished to thank Mark & Karen Laker, who run the UpAndOver training club, for all their support over the last few years.
About Sue Rolfe...
Last year she won into Advanced with Kes which was her main aim, qualified for the Supadogs Senior Final, the Trek Pairs Final and, of course, Olympia. Since this article was printed in the UpAndOver club newsletter, she went on to win first part of the International event at Crufts for England and came second in the Crufts Singles Senior Final, putting in a brilliant performance. Currently Kes is top of the Senior League for her region in the Agility Eye tables.