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Thread: Cardiff dad becomes world champion at sport that sees him running with his dogs

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2013

    Cardiff dad becomes world champion at sport that sees him running with his dogs

    A dad inspired to run with dogs by his 10-year-old daughter has won a title at the sport’s first world championships.

    David Bird, 36, from Pentrebane, Cardiff, had been a keen rugby player but was forced to quit four years ago after breaking his ankle. But when he was looking for something else to do to keep fit, his daughter Shannon helped him decide. The youngster told her dad he should try running with dogs attached via a waist belt – after seeing hurdler Colin Jackson attempt it on BBC’s The One Show.

    And, taking her advice, David won in the two-dog, male category at the inaugural CSJ Canine Max CaniX World Championships held at Pembrey Country Park, Carmarthenshire. He told the Echo: “I used to run when I was younger, gave up when I was 17 and retired from rugby four and a half years ago when I broke and ankle. “I was looking for something to do and my daughter wanted to do this.“ I didn’t know what to think. I was just looking at getting into some sort of sport.

    “It’s the hardest kind of running because you are not used to being pulled by the hips by the dog. Instead of pushing yourself to run, you are being pulled!”

    David trains on Castell Coch and the Garth mountain. At the recent weekend of racing at Pembrey Country Park, he competed with his dog Marble – a Border Collie – and a friend’s dog Tia, a German Shorthaired Pointer.

    David, a plant attendant at Aberthaw Power Station, had been 39 seconds behind the leader after the first day of racing but went onto win. “I knew it was going to be close, being 39 seconds behind him and I thought I may have gained around 30 seconds but it turned out I was actually 43,” David said.

    CaniX involves running cross country courses with one or two harnessed dogs or alternatively a bike or scooter with a dog pulling in front.

    The world championships, held just over a week ago, attracted competitors from Belgium, Spain and New Zealand.

    Full story here

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2013
    I do find myself occasionally drawn to the idea of cani cross. Not sure it would be Sam's cup of tea though. When we go for a run she is always behind or if I call her to heal, at the side. It would take a fair bit of conditioning to get her to pull along in front.

    I started at the bottom and I like it here

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