Today European champion Stefan Donker with his thoroughbred from Canada, Hincapie, came by for a mating with powerhouse from Norway, Ali. A combination that is worthwhile! Hincapie's bloodline is extremely rare here in Europe. She is also a very strong 28kg bitch with a perseverance to say the least. Ali is a 34kg male. He has never had a bad day and is now the core of my team.
Today our puppies are born from the combination of our wonder dog, Flauw, and the German Pointer, Zlatan, from Norway. Future assured!
Back from Sweden. We tried our best, but is was not ment to be. On day 1 we deliberately reduced the speed to get through the fairly long stage well. We ranked ourselves in 7th place. The pressure was therefore heavy, because the team was not tired or exhausted at all. The second race day all brakes were released and it went very fast. We quickly got into the right vibe and the dogs were running like a train. After checkpoint two, we had already caught up so much time that we were in second place. The loot was within reach. About five kilometers before the end, the young yearling in front got mentally difficult and started to lose his confidence. I eventually decided to anchor. This with a view to the development of the young animal. Which of course cost me the race. I went for the good of the dog instead of the glory. We left the game with mixed feelings.
Last training in the mud before we depart for Norway. There we train some days in the snow before we travel to Asarna, Sweden. We will participate at the European Championship.
The biggest dog/animal magazine of Belgium (WOEF) wrote a nice article about us. 5 pages long.
A little after midnight, Flauw gave birth to her first puppy, a black male. Many came after him and around 10 o'clock in the morning the 12th and last pup came out. In total, Flauw gave birth to five males and seven females. All are doing well and gained immediatly weight after the first day.
Our best dog, Flauw, is bred by Fun Racing Harley. A super male from Hege Ingebrigtsen in Narvik, Norway. Harley joined our team last season and he has proven himself well. Both the MD training and sprint went super for him. We are very curious about these puppies and we expect them mid-May.
We became 6th of the 35 top teams in the 'four-dog class'. We started the year with a view to the mid-distance. These are races of 35-50 kilometers. There the pace is naturally lower. But in early January one of the dogs fell out and we have to switch to the sprint. In short: 8 kilometers of super hard sprinting. Unfortunately, we only had three weeks to prepare the dogs. Our lead dog, Flauw, is crucial and without her, things go wrong faster. She takes care of the drive in the team. Without her, we lost 1 minute 10 seconds the first day and gained a 9th place. The second and last day we ran remarkably faster and we gained a 5th time. At the end of the two days we were in 6th place.
We had a lot of bad luck, but we continued. How the result would have gone with our superleader is forever a mystery. In any case, she will bring our team back to the top next year.
Even at the mass start it was more difficult without Flauw. We had a lot of bad luck this World Cup. We started very fast on Sunday, however, and jumped from the second row to fifth place. Suddenly we landed in the deep snow so we lost speed and dropped to ninth place. Two kilometers further, we overtook two teams at the same time when descending a hill. But the ropes were tangled several times. Finally I was able to overtake four more teams and had to take 16th place in that discipline.
After three weeks of training in Hamar, Norway, we are back in Belgium again. We have trained for the Mid-Distance race of 35 kilometers. The dogs did the training trail of 33 km in 1 hour and 20 minutes and it could be even faster. They could set a time of 1 hour and 15 minutes in the race. We are certain of that, because we had to slow down the first 18 km a lot and they could accelerate the last three km to an average speed of 30 km/h. Unfortunately, a dog trampled into the deep snow and bumped his wrist. We have chosen, with the World Championship in sight, to save the dogs and prevent further injuries. We took part in the sprint competition of 10.5 km with five dogs and a borrowed dog from Taina Teräs. The first day we had to stop for a collar that was unfolded, but we still ran the third time. Unexpected that the team could accelerate so much. The second day everything went well and we even drove the second fastest time. However, we were 5 seconds for that second place!
We raced this weekend in Holland at the KIVO Kempentrail. We used our new Traczer for the first time and successfully. We ran the fastest time of all participants and this with a nice 33.5km / h average speed. Click on the picture below for the video of the race.
Beside our litter with Greta we decided to do another litter. This in collaboration with Tommy Baes. He has a very good female, Nike, and we have bred her with our best lead dog, Dingle. After an ultrasound, we are sure that the breeding is successful. If everything goes well, Nike expects puppies on July 12th.
Greta gave birth to 12 puppies. There are 8 females and 4 males. All are very healthy! Good job, Greta!
Greta has been bred by Zorro from Patrick Wirz!! A combination that will insure our future in the sport!
What an amazing championship! We went out and hoped for a place in top 5, but we took silver.. My first season with 6 dogs and I am very proud!! After day 3 the dogs felt good and could even go for a fourth day. Thats also because of the great meat from Dinapet, the excellent dryfood from Brit-Petfood and the care of our vet-team Balto!!!
Hege Ingebrigtsen, thank you for mentoring our team! Without you it was not possible to stand on this level.. Your tips and guidence mean a lot to me..
Click on the photo below to view our peace on national TV:
Driving back home from our the Swiss Championship.. no podium for us, but still very proud! First day two wrong turns and and one time landed with my face down in the snow. We still ran an average of 31,6km/u over the 10.5km trail.. Second day Boris had a sore paw due to the snow conditions, so I drove with 5.. tryed to run with Flauw and Greta in lead, two yearlings! The trail was not that easy for them, but I braked a bit more for them and we ran without a wrong turn.. Again my young team learned a lot and we can focus now on the European Championship!! Go Go Go
Our first raceweekend went very well!! First day I made a lot of sled driving mistakes, but on the second day I braked a bit more. Made driving a bit better! Today we ran 18’46” on the 10.3km trail. Very pleased with our dogs!!! Especially to our yearling, Flauw, who ran in lead two days!
Many thanks to our mentor, Hege Ingebrigtsen!!!
We were asked by Peter Thuwis from the outdoor shop, Verreweg, to test the new clothes of Páramo Directional Clothing. 12km of heavy mud did not resist us. Super first test day!!
We are back from the Flemish championship. The dogs ran 4.7km for two days. Due to the technical trail, we were forced to compeed with our ATV. We still managed to be the fastest overall team. The first title of the season is in the pocket. Click on the link below for a glimp of our contest:
The organization of Xtreme Xperience asked us to give a demonstration at their event. Therefore, the sled dog sport certainly belongs to the category of extreme sports. We received many positive reactions about the dogs and their exhibition of strength and speed. Also, our partners came nicely in the picture.
The season is coming to an end. Yet we continue to work hard for next year, our debut in the six dog class. The youngsters learn the tricks of the trade and every day they get stronger and faster. Again, a young female continues to amaze us every day. Flauw, a bitch bred by Hege Ingebrigtsen, trains since the second training in lead. A dog with a enormous drive! That is a promise for next year. Click on the photo of Flauw, for a training video!!
Our dogs have been given all they have during the last two weekends. On 20 and 21 January we won the race in Unterjoch. It was a race against the clock. The first day the dogs went straight on instead of turning left on a crossroad. We ended up on the second place with 36 seconds behind the first team. The second day was faultless and we did the 5 km race in 9 minutes and 49 seconds. We won easily with an average well over 30km/h and it was a very mountainous landscape!! Together we reached a top speed of 41.8 km/h.
Click on the link for the movie of day 2 in Unterjoch:
The weekend after, on 28 and 29 January, we participated at the German championship in Todtmoos. The fastest teams in Europe were committed to come here and we could now see how quickly this young team really is. It was even more mountainous than in Unterjoch. Incredible tough climbs followed by rapid declines. Nevertheless, we achieved after the first day first place with a time of 7'31 '' over 3.8 km. The second day we had to stop with a problem with a pull line, but still ran a time of 7'33'' and this with a top speed of 46.5km/h!! Incredible!!! We maintained our first place with a lead of 1 minute 53 seconds on the second team. What a performance of Boris and Dingle!!
From now on we are going to train Flauw, Greta, Johan and Fongoelo to shoot next year with a brand new and very fast six dog team!!
Back from our training camp in Hamar, Norway. We also picked up our sixth hound, named Greta. She is the sister of Johan and she will be trained as a leaddog for our six dog team next year. After four days of training (in a row), the two racedogs put 46km of snow trails into their legs. Stefan also trained with the eight dog team of Hege Ingebrigtsen. A great kick and a huge learning experience. Are to Run racing team is now preparing itself forthe height of the season, the German championship in Todtmoos.
Below is a little video of our training in Hamar:
Last weekend we participated at a race in Opglabbeek. Our young dogs trained to pass a lot and they do that now without any problems. Dingle and Boris, are extremely sharp and the focus is entirely on the German championship in late January. But first we go to Norway for their snow training. They may do their first snow race, in Unterjoch, the weekend befor the championship.
In early december we will participate at a race in Helchteren, Belgium. Gradually the dogs get the necessary endurance. They can now easily pull the cart for ten kilometer.
The season has started again. Boris and Dingle have already around 70 km in their legs and the drive is enormous! Special thanks to Kariboe Hasselt and Lundhags!! Thanks to them the musher stays, during the cold and wet autumn days, warm and dry.
A days training with author, Stijn Moekaars. We set out to teach him about our sport. Together we are writing a children's book about my super lead dog Esdra and her amazing adventures. Publisher Clavis, Stijn and me will do our best to publish the book as soon as possible.
Our young hounds now know what we want them to do. They have trained a couple of months in Beglium in the mud and it goes really well. So now we wanted them to teach the necessary snow abilities. We drove to the beautiful " La Magdeleine " in Italy. The first training was somewhat stiff through the fresh snow and snowfall . The dogs were immediately presented with a very heavy trail. The following days increased their self-confidence and strength rapidly. By the end of the snow training it was obvious that we should not drive back home with the same young dogs , but rather with a powerfull and race ready unit!
At the end of last season we made the choice to change to the open category. In this class, it does not matter with what type of dog you run. As long as the dog is mentally and physically up to the task, he can enter the race. In this competition they ran mostly with hounds. This is a crossbreed from a husky, German shorthair, pointer, Greyhound, etc. Since people no longer look at the prescribed breeding standard of the huksy, but only rely on the performance of the dog, they developed the ultimate sprint dog. We look forward with great anticipation for next season. We will compeed with our super Siberian, Esdra, and our three new hounds, Dingle, Harry and Boris. We chose Dingle from the famous world champion, Hege Ingebrigtsen. Boris we bought at Linnea Lindmark, because she bred a super litter from hege's bloodline. Harry we chose at Rudi Ropertz, whose name is inscribed since 1980 in the European sleddogsport. We have already started to train our team and the prospects are promising. The difference between our previous huskies and these ultimate sprint dogs is already visible.
Esdra teaches Dingle the do's and don'ts.
The television program, Koppen, on één, has followed NPO Are to Run a whole year. After long shooting days and dozens of hours of footage, the reporters (Guy De Troyer, Celine Willmore, Teun Pipe and Johan Somers) made a very handsome movie. How do you become a world champion in sled dog racing? View the video by clicking on the picture below.
Last weekend we defended our championship title at the World Championships. This year it was kept in Scharnitz, Austria. The trail ran completely through the Valley, leaving no hills to climb, and this is just Are to Run's speciallity. Yet, the qualitative training took the upper hand and the dogs went to the extreme. Also Active and Esdra are remarkably lighter than their opponents. So it was not evident to compeed with them on the flat trails. As a result, Stefan and his two lead dogs couldn't renew their world title. Stefan says: "I am very proud of my two lead dogs! They didn't gave in to the fatigue and even went faster every time when I asked them to. That ultimate bond between me and my dogs, thats why I love this sport!! I'm super proud with our Silver! "
Next weekend there will take place a Viking festival in Tongeren. 500 Vikings from all over Europe come to Tongeren. The highlight of the festival is VIKIMANIA. The directed by Stijn Coninx and Jan Kriekels (CEO JAGA). Not only the Vikings will steal the show, also more than 300 volunteers participate in this spectacle. The life-size viking boat will be fired by none other than Jan Kriekels. It is up to Are to Run to transport him, on Arctic way, to the spectacle. What an entrance!
We are back from a super race weekend! We took 1st place in Les Saisies, France! This was without a doubt the heaviest contest in my sled dog career. I was warned it was a heavy trail, but when we were running it, it became very clear!! Almost half the race we needed to climb uphill!! I am lucky that Esdra is such a outstanding dog, without her it was impossible! Active and myself gained mental power only to look her!! PHENOMENAL!!
1e Stefan Goris, 2e Nathalie Rossignol, 3e Kevin Steensels
Next weekend we wanted to compete at the qualification race for the WC in Unterjoch, Germany. Unfortunately, the warm weather continues to follow us, because the race is called off. We have now chosen to participate at the race in Haidmühle, Germany. Hopefully it stays winter in Bavaria! Team Are to Run tries as best as possible to prepare for this World Cup qualifier, knowing that it is currently 9 degrees in Belgium!! Way too hot for the dogs to train on this level.
Are to Run's training camp is slowly ending. The dogs trained 50 km in snow. They start to get the hang of the distances, despite its very hilly here! Half the trail is uphill and they do this in full gallop!!
A Belgium film crew also came to make a nice documentary of how we prepare for the upcoming World Championship. We had three full days of filming. The dogs sometimes had to have some patience, because the cameramen were not as fast as us. This docu will be broadcasted around the end of March.
Preparing for our trainingscamp in Sweden!! We will stay at the Of Macmuirch kennel, from Benjamin Schaap en Nadia Fleming. We are going to test the new sled and start speed training, needed for the World Championship!!
We are just waiting for our winter outfits.. So Bergans of Norway can give us a super warm christmas!!
We have been asked for an exclusive workshop today in Stoumont, Belgium. The CEO of a successful American company, and it's board of directors, are planning an expedition from Finland to Russia in march 2015. Of course they need to pick up a lot of knowledge and a good level of fitness. They will be trained by expedition leader and mountaineer, Bjorn Vandewege. In collaboration with Escape Event!
On september 9, I gave a lecture in Tielt, Belgium, about the combination of talents, dreams and the dog-sled sport. Education Flanders asked me last school year if I was interested to to explain to hundreds of young people how I've become a world champion, during the event ' Nine Nine Fourteen '. What talents I have used and what was needed to make my dream come true?
On 14 september, we represent the sled dog sport at the event Xtreme Xperience! Together with the Luxembourg adventurer Raphael Fiegen. So drop by, sunday the 14th!! ;-)
The future world champions are born today. Esdra and her litter are doing super well!
All athletes who have achieved something in the year 2014, were honored at the champions celebration on Friday the 20th June in the city of Bilzen. We were surprised by the high number of athletes who won serious prices. I was very pleasantly surprised with the rating of sportsman of the year 2014!
Successful breeding!! We expect puppies of Esdra and Joel around 6 August!!
Thank you very much for the handsome delivery, Bergans of Norway! What a beautiful and high-quality clothing!
On Sunday 1 June Are to Run will have a workshop at WOEFdag. Certainly interesting for everyone who is interested in sled dog racing! We are ready for you from 9 to 6, on the provincial domain in Huizingen.
16-02-2014 !!!WORLD CHAMPION!!!
1e Stefan Goris, 2e Sandra Kaufmann, 3e Mikolaj Wlodarczyk
25-11-2013 !!EUROPEAN CHAMPION!!
We train very hard for the European Championship in Beloeil, Belgium! The dogs now pull 220kg (quad +musher) at an average speed of 22-23 km/h. In the video below you see a short training of team Are to Run (trail 1500m).
Today, we picked up Fant at the Jemano Kenel of Onno and Marja de Jong. It's a very opinionated and independent dog with lots of spunk. She will definitely honour her place as co-leader.. ;-)
Today the puppies came to visit my class. It was a unique experience for the children to be surrounded with so many small dogs. Also for the puppy's, it was an unmissable opportunity for their socialization!!
Meanwhile, Snotra did a handsome job! She brought 8 healthy puppies into the world. The are three males and five females..
During the long Easter weekend, (30 March to 1 april), team Are to Run and team Snowforce, will give several demonstrations at Animal Event. This will take place in Flanders Expo Ghent!
18-02-2013 Team Are to Run is n°7 of Europe!!
The first day we braked too much, so we finished 13th out of 43. It was a super fast trail and the team ran like a train! I thought we were going fast enough to make a good place and to save the dogs for the upcoming race dayes. This was apparently a misjudgment! The second day I did not braked, but the team didn't really get into a nice simultaneous gallop. Yet we rose three places with a 7th time! Sunday, the last match day, the dogs ran fantastic! With the 5th fastest time we took some places! After three tough days and 25 km further, we ranked at a nice 7th place at the European Championship in Haidmühle!
The race in Clausthall-Zellerfeld is a fact. We took first place!!!! The trail was extremely heavy. We were expecting a quick trail, but nothing was further from the truth. The snow was very soft. But the team did not care and worked itself trough it!
1e Stefan Goris, 2e Jan Groot Kormelink, 3e Bramowski Götz
It was a cold and tough contest in Frauenwald. On some pieces you saw no hand in front of the eyes, due to the heavy fog. Yet, it seemed not to bother the lead dogs. The sweeped over the trail.. As a result, a third place!!
1e Mateusz Surówka, 2e Matthes Isabell, 3e Stefan Goris
TVL is filming us!! Tomorrow around 7 pm a short report about dog sledding during the local news!!
First place in Alpe du Grand Serre, France! It was a very heavy trail. A Sturdy climb of 1, 5 km. Good thing the dogs retained their gallop, because I died twice during this monstrous climb. But once again a very happy return of a weekend mushing!!
1e Stefan Goris, 2e Marie-Line Marchal, 3e Kevin Steensels
Second place in Seefeld, Austria!! The dogs worked super and the speed was great. Unfortunately, the second match day was cancelled, due to the wether. It was extremly hot!! Global warming affects everyone, everywhere..
1e Mateusz Surówka, 2e Stefan Goris, 3e Iris Mauderer
01 & 02-12-2012
The first day of the Pampa contest, we stopped three times to recover. The front wheels were also almost the whole trail on lock. During the second day, the trail was a lot heavier, due to an overnight rain. Also our start time was a bit earlier, making it a bit cooler for the dogs. So let the guys ran the trail in one time. I am very definitely satisfied with this unexpected third place!
After a mind-breaking 25 hour ride we arrived safely back in Belgium. Benjamin and Nadia, thank you for this amazing experience. Active is already socializing with Chuck. The temperature difference is huge, but there he will be accustomed to it fast enough! Allt kommer bra med honom och se er snart! :-p
Meanwhile, VZW Are to Run is in Laxsjö, Sweden, with Benjamin Schaap and Nadia Fleming. It is beautiful here and a lot colder than in Belgium. Yesterday we trained with 15 dogs for the quad. What a gang!! But it ran very smoothly!
We are on the KIVO Kempentrail, Holland! It was a good day to see so many familiar faces. Instead of racing in the C1, we have trained with the quad in the Happy Dog Class. The dogs did it very well!
From today, we are sponsored by Brit-Petfood. The dog food is from top quality with an energy value of 4382 kcal. The dogs sure can find the necessary energy for training and racing.
VZW Are to Run did a demonstration on Animal Event, Holland. Always nice to show the people that sled dogs are born for this line of work!
The website is online!!