Onyx smashes it at Crufts with team Focus!!

Focus Crufts Flyball Champions 2020

Garry has always from a young boy wanted a Manchester Terrier, in 2015 he got in contact with Estella Saxton and met with her, Phil and their dogs, later that year he was informed that there was a pup available to him. Garry made the promise to Estella that he would put Onyx (Rattustrap Tantalum) on the green carpet and the tv for the flyball at Crufts.

Training Onyx for flyball has had its ups and downs and Onyx had a bit of a setback when she encountered a freak accident in late 2018 and alot of work had to be put in to regain her confidence.

Focus Flyball Team have continued their faith in Garry and Onyx and she remains the height dog on the top team.

Focus went in to the quarter finals at Crufts on the Friday and had to win their first race to ensure that they progressed through to the semi finals the following day, their team captain ran the line up of Mouse, Kenai, Panik and Onyx, Focus ran clean and beat Cambridgeshire well and that guaranteed their semi final place the very next day. All other races on the Friday were for places on that day. The team captain chose to alter the line ups several times so that he could rest dogs and equally give every dog and handler the opportunity to run at Crufts.

In to the semi finals and Focus were drawn against their good friends Killie Flyers, Onyx was rested for the first race as she does have a tendency to spit her ball the very first leg and there was no warm up race, Focus won this race and guaranteed their place in the final.

Focus then had to race Aces High who were the 2019 Champions, at 1 leg each and being best of 3 legs it went to the decider, Aces had a light for a spat ball and Focus were running clean but the spat ball from Aces rolled in to Focus’s lane and Roscoe the Vizsla stopped to pick up that ball at the exact point that Garry released Onyx, this resulted in 2 dogs in the lane at the same time, the judge called for distraction which was the correct call and the leg was rerun. Aces ran clean in the rerun and Focus finished 3rd in the semi finals but had done enough to qualify for Sunday’s final.

It was Finals day and Focus were drawn against Brigg Mutley Crew, Focus ran well and won the race, this meant they were racing against Karmandos (Garry and Onyx’s previous team that they raced with), the winner of this race would be crowned champions.

The first leg Focus ran clean and won on speed, the second leg there was a spat ball from Focus, the atmosphere was electric and very tense, could Focus hold their nerves as they went in to the final leg, Craig their team captain changed the order that the dogs ran in which turned out to be a very good tactical call, Focus ran tight and both sides got an early light but Focus had gained a huge advantage due to being the faster team and reran the handler fault of an early cross and came back faster than Karmandos and were duely crowned Crufts 2020 Flyball Champions.

There was tears of jubilation and some emphatic celebrating. We asked Garry how he felt afterwards and he said he was so proud of Onyx but more proud of the whole team and their achievement as flyball is a team sport and every person and every dog plays a part.

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