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If you talk about Argentinian Agility, you must talk about Slivina Bruera, icon of our sport, one of that people that make Agility an artistic thing, one of the handlers that float on the course. Humble, simple, warm, generous, excellent companion; once again in Agility-Argentina, our friend Silvina Bruera:

Foremost, we want to thank you for your time and congratulations for winning your place in the EEUU team for the next World Championship that will take place in Chek Republic. We would like you to explain the qualification system that allowed you to achieve this place.

The team that represents EEUU in FCI WC is chosen by the AKC.
The AKC select a team of 15 participants (4 titular and one reserve in each categories, mini, medium and large).

6 pairs (2 members of each category) win their place in the competition that takes place in May (World Team Try-outs) and the other 6 pairs and the reserve, are chosen by the coach and the team leader, taking into account the results in the AKC Nationals and Try-outs.

To be able to participate in the World Team Try-outs, the pair from the large category must participate in local competitions in the 26” division (66cm), during one year to achieve:

  • At least 8 clean runs in Agility Excellent B class 26”, with a minimum speed of 3.6 m/s,
  • 8 clean runs in Jumping with Weaves Excellent B class 26” with a minimum speed of 4,9 m/s,
  • and 4 clean runs in Double Q Excellent B 26” (meaning both clean runs in Agility and Jumping the same day).

Con Tcam nos llevo 3 meses cubrir estos requerimientos, Septiembre, Octubre y Noviembre 2011.

With Tcam it took 3 months to achieve these requirements, September, October and December 2011.

Try-outs are two very intensive days. The First consists in 3 courses, and the best pair qualifies automatically in each category (mini-midi-large). That day is the one that we won with Tcam.

The second day consist in two courses, that combined with the ones of the first day, define the second place of the team in each category, based on a ranking of points obtained (example: 1st place= 9 points, 2nd place= 8 points, etc.). With Tcam we obtained the 4th place in this ranking.

This year 40 dogs participated in Try-outs in the Large class.

What were your expectations on these Try-outs?

My expectations on these Try-outs were knowing if I would be able to consider Tcam for international events. For example, how she would be affected by the flight, and running in a indoor place with artificial grass.
Also how we manage running international courses with the best dogs and handlers of the country. I wanted to know if it would be worth to focus in going for international competitions in the future. After retiring “Maja” from te international competitions, I wasn´t sure if “Tcam” could be fisically and emotionally trained to be my partner in this kind of adventures that I enjoy a lot.

Tell us who Tcam is

Tcam is a 4 year old border collie. Her father is “Blackwatch Gamble on Coty”, same as Maja’s father. And her mother is "Blackwatch Hi-C-Era Tala", a blue merle border collie that stayed with us and I was lucky to train and compete for about a year in 2003. I fall in love with her and dream to have a puppy from her since then. “Maja” and “Tala”, have the same mother.
That means that Tcam share 75% of the same genetic as Maja.

We would like to know how is Maja today, what was her injury and how was her recovery.

Maja had a minor injury in her left shoulder that I´m almost sure that occurred jumping without getting warm before and landing in a concrete floor. Her injure become evident in competitions when she started to make short steps before jumping, which was very unusual to her jump style.
After a rest period, fistic therapy and careful recovery, she started to participate again in Agility competitions in August. But as a result of this, I decided to make her jump only 50cm, that is to say she wont participate in international competitions where she should be jumping 65cm.

Maja is in her best moment of her career in Agility. She only participates in the 20” division (50cm), that seems to be the natural height for her. In this moment she is in the top 5 ranking of Border Collies that participate in AKC Agility in EEUU, with a steadiness of more tan 90% of clean runs since August when she started to compete again after the recovery of her injury.

What means for you to being part of the EEUU team?

To be part of the EEUU team is incredible for me. It was part of my wildest dreams and I thought that it was impossible to reach. In 2010, when Maja was selected to be the reserve of the team, I was very happy, but it does not compare with the emotion of being part of the EEUU team with Tcam, especially because I didn´t expected this.

Can you tell us something about the other pairs of the large team?

I couldn´t be more happy with my teammates. Besides being people that I respect and admire, they are fun people with a very positive attitude. I am very happy to share this experience with them.

Tori Self with Revolution got their place in the second day of Try-outs, they are a very Young pair, but with a lot of experience in the sport. She lives in Florida. The First time a saw her running was in 2009, USDAA Nationals. I went over to congratulate her, and I was impacted by her humility. I am her fan since then.

Daisy Pell and Solar was selected for her performance in Try-outs, besides winning the AKC Nationals. Daisy lives in Washington, so the First time I saw her running with Solar was in the AKC Nationals 2010, when I couldn’t resist to say how much I admire her for having that very Young dog so perfectly trained. Since then, Daisy and Solar are an inspiration for mi.

Chanan Fosty and Icon were also selected for their performance in Try-outs and AKC Nationals. Chanan lives near my home and I know her since several years, when both competed in the 24” division, Chanan withe her Boxer and i with my Doberman. There is long time since we share practices and we had been growing in this sport, I am a witness of her dedication, effort and passion she is committed in her training.

Terry Smorch with Presto was selected as reserve for their performance in Try-Outs and AKC Nationals. Terry lives in Minnesota, so I have the opportunity to see him in National events. He has a solid trajectory; he has been in the top ranking for years and with each new dog is still better trained than the previous one. An example of perseverance and dedication to excellence.

How is the preparation of the team for the WC?

The coach, Nancy Gyes, prepares and post exercises and courses in a private email list to each one for practice.

Besides the individual preparation, the team travel two weekends (one in June, the other one in August) to practice all together. The goal of these trainings is not only give us the opportunity to run WC judge´s courses, but also the opportunity to know each other and establish a team dynamics.

The first practice was in Seattle, where we ran 15 courses. Our coaches, Nancy Gyes and Kathie Legget were very generous organizing and helping us running better, with more consistency and speed every sequence of these courses.
Everything was perfectly organized and tidy. We had volunteers that build the courses and made everything for us, so the team can only concentrate in running the exercises. There was also a AKC representative, who was in charge of the transport, accommodation and food for all of us. And on top of that, Daisy Peel husband cooked a special dinner for the complete team on Saturday night.
All of them, very generous people that gave their time to make life mor easy for us and made us feel supported and loved!! It was a unforgettable experience.

The second practice will be in August, in Power Paws Agility, San Jose, CA.

You participated in some WC, and in all of them you had to cover the cost of your participation, and in lot of them you were the only Argentinian representative. We would like to know which will be the difference between that participations and the next WC.

I think I would answer this question better after the event.
Personally the major difference will be that I will be part of a team, being that only one time, I had the luck to participate in a WC as a part of a team in Spain 2005. Some differences is that the team must be in Europe the Saturday before to get used to the change of time, and it´s usual to have some practice in Europe the days before WC. Also there is a veterinary and a therapist for the dogs if it is necessary.

How are you preparing?

I continue taking 2 days a weed classes with Nancy Gyes, one is a semi private with international focus, in which I only dedicate to Tcam, and a group one with national focus in which I participate with Maja and Tcam. Also I keep working to maintain our physical condition: the dogs run in the treadmill and I bike.

Is there something in which you´re specifically working with Tcam for the WC?

There´s nothing I’m working with more intensity than others at this moment. I am still focused on not dropping bars and working on precision on contacts. I am also working on synchronization handling exercises with the bars on the floor.

What are your expectations in the WC?

My expectations are making four clean runs.

What means to you knowing that Argentina will be in the WC again with a team?

Knowing that Argentina will be in the WC with a team makes me very happy! I’m counting the hours to see and hold them all!!!

Is the A&C 2013 in your schedule for next year?

I have no planned my schedule for the next year, but I would like to participate in the A&C 2013, I just hope that the date does not match with the AKC Nationals.

Dear Sil, we are very grateful for your time. As always, we will be pending on your participation in the WC, and this year we´ll cheer up for two teams.

Silvina junto a Maja & Tcam y algunas de sus carreras más recientes